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The Breast IS best…

December 27, 2009

I’ve been seeing breastfeeding bill boards popping up around lately.  There is on on 422 in Warren, and one on 224 in Boardman.  This is SUCH a great thing!!!  I nearly jumped out of the car with joy when I saw them.  Of course, this doesn’t mean diddley squat as far as actually GETTING people to breastfeed, but it’s a great thought(it’s the thought that counts, right??).

I had a tremendous struggle with Ian.  My grandmother worked in a hospital in her 20s and 30s and her JOB was mixing up formula all day.  Though that was 60 years ago, that is, of course, for her, the right way.  Her kids were raised on it, and they’re all fine(ummm, thats’ debatable).   I was raised on 2% cows milk(I always hope that since it was the 70s that there were no antibiotics or hormones in the milk I received, but hey…  truths not known can’t make you go slowly insane, right?).  My mom said it hurt too bad when she tried the first time(Really?  I found the first latch-on a joyful, painless experience, not unlike attaching jumper cables to your nipples.  That’s why I kept doing it.  There is video footage of Ian’s first latch on[face ONLY of course], and my mother still jokes about my eyeballs actually bugging out of my head when he latched on).   But then, she didn’t experience birth either, as the mid-seventies was a time when it was popular to ‘knock women out’ for their babies arrival.  She has no memory of it at all.   Between the 2 of them, my support was nil.  Jon was extremely supportive, and encouraged me to the best of his ability, but sitting and watching me cry in pain and frustration is not really his bag.   La Leche League was my hero.  I emailed the Warren rep so many times I don’t even know.   She even helped me through a plugged duct that happened a few weeks after I had stopped nursing.    The weaning occurred as soon as Ian had 2 teeth that occluded.  He drew blood, and I screamed SO loud, that was the end for both of us.  He was 9.5 months old.  I switched him to raw goat milk after that.

If it isn’t enough to convince people with biology that the breast is best, then how about with economics?  The US government spends over $600 million a year to provide formula for its WIC supplemental food program.  WIC actually provides free infant formula to 37% of all infants born in the USA.   I had heard and read that stat before.  When I googled to find the exact stat, I got this blog as a result:

If stats on cost, waste, and $ amounts of dr. visits prevented interest you, that blog post is you’re thing.  It’s got it all.

Why else did I go on this ‘rant’, aside from the billboards?  Yesterday, we met with Jon’s Dad’s side of the family.  Jon’s cousin has a son who will be 1 year old in January.  Jon’s other cousin(not present yesterday) also has an almost 1 year old, a daughter.  Now, the little boy is just SOMETHING.  He’s a little wonder.  He’s adorable, active, personable, he’s got it all.  Mom is a SAHM, and he is just beginning to start on ‘real foods’.  He’s been solely breastfed.  In October, we met the little girl for the first time.  She totally seemed in a ‘daze’.   The eye contact, the personality…  it just wasn’t there.  The little boy was at that same party in October, and though they are only weeks apart, they are really MILES apart.  Why does it seem like you can always spot a formula-fed baby by they way it sits and stares at you with it’s mouth hanging open??  Is it just us(me & Jon)???   Maybe I just don’t understand, and never will.   I guess I’ll just sit back and be thankful that I am the person that I am and I did enough research to know the right thing to do, and I did it, even though it wasn’t fun.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. January 1, 2010 11:37 am

    Excellent post! I agree with this
    so much…there seems to be a whole sector of society that is just uneducated to the positives of breastfeeding and refuses to acknowledge that formula is substandard. My kid had thrush until she
    was 8months old and it was rough. Hence why I’m still nursing: I am a tough mama. I am strong and I am willing to do whatever it takes because it makes me stronger too.

  2. January 1, 2010 11:39 am

    I Left the wrong blog address on my last comment! Oops! It’s hard to type on the iPhone!

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