Caroline is wearing a onesie and her adorable little madras shorts today which I decided she has not worn enough. Sarah and Michelle literally gasped when they saw her. Michelle said "I can't wait to have a baby to dress up this cute." Mom beamed ear to ear; mission accomplished! My response to them was that this is true and you suddenly don't care so much about you wear so long as your baby looks the absolute cutest she can possibly look. It is painfully difficult for me to send her to daycare in onesies and pants. I am satisfied however that she is not coming home with pretty party dresses stained with avocado or sweet potatos. Very satisfied!

Sassy Satin

In the car on the way to work I was thinking about that. I looked down and saw my pressed black pants (much in need of a dry cleaning as I can make out the faint milk stains on them from their previous wearing - nice) and my sassy satin shirt. I looked into the rear view and saw my simple low pony with the ever present flyaways. I was wearing tinted moisturizer, bronzer, blush, even mascara! In comparison to my usual at home wardrobe of shorts and a t shirt with an unwashed pony today's outfit choice was clearly more sophisticated, polished. If nothing else work has given me an opportunity to be a little selfish, to take the extra 30 seconds to apply the mascara, to dare to wear pressed pants and SATIN. This is a good thing. I am SUPER psyched that I can wear all my pre-preggo clothes, but now I look at them in new ways ie can I pump in that top? I guess what I am trying to say is that after 6 months I am feeling like my clothes, albeit the same clothes I have had for quite some time with a couple new friends, are so foreign to me still. Is that strange? It is a real treat to get to wear them and sometimes I feel not so me, even though these are my clothes... does any of this make sense???


There was a long debate on another site I frequent that I often refer to as the beanies. This is a group of women who originally met while planning their weddings on theknot, moved to an msn board called the beantown brides - hence beanies - and have since relocated yet again to a new site... I digress. These women have been in my life for 4 years now and while we are all married now and are clearly not picking floral arrangements, attending dress fittings, or choosing a honeymoon destination, we are still quite connected across the web, as connected as you can be through a website I suppose. Some of us have purchased homes, some have had babies (Caroline was one of THREE babies born in quick succession), and we continue to have lots to discuss completely unrelated to weddings. It is a highlight in my day to catch up, to laugh, to enjoy the successes and offer support to my fellow beanies. The reason I give the back story is to illustrate that this community has evolved over time and typically is a picture perfect example of women supporting women.

Yesterday a comment was posted about the NY Times article detailing that hospitals will no longer provide formula samples to new mothers to take home. This simple post spawned a four page debate about breastfeeding, leading to some excellent discussion, but also some hurt feelings. While I chose to nurse Caroline, I would never think less of a woman for choosing not to.

I am quite happy to hear that the hospitals are no longer going to send women home with formula. It gets to be SO overwhelming! I think hospitals are doing a good job (though more needs to be done) these days educating new moms about the different feeding options, offering lactation consultants, classes during your post partum stay...

Each time I see my parents they hand me the coupons that the formula companies have sent to their home in error and I mean EVERY time. I save them. Did I accept the formula from the hospital, you bet I did. Did I accept it when it was given to us at our prenatal class, heck YEA I did. Why? Because I was fearful that I would FAIL and not be able to nurse and I would need this formula at 3 in the morning and instead of sending Steve out into the cold night to locate a food source for Caroline, this formula would literally save us. She has had one bottle of formula that I know of in her life. I am proud that I have been able to supply the other gazillion oz of milk she has eaten in her nearly 6 months and that her new chubby little thighs and chipmunk cheeks are because of my hard work. (patting self on back!)

So here is why I think the hospitals are making the right move to STOP offering this. The benefits of breast milk are well-known, 'nough said right? So why are the hospitals allowing these companies to inundate new mothers yet again with their products? $$$$$$$ And it makes me angry on some level! I am all for choice - let the mother make her own decision - but handing her a free canister of formula doesn't seem to advocate choice does it? When you leave the hospital, nursing mom or not you get your goody bag courtesy of Enfamil or Similac (we actually use the bag for day care and it is awesome for this purpose - so I guess that kind of ruins my argument huh?) BUT they don't send you home with the formula and a pump do they? Insurance often doesn't cover the cost of a pump does it? Pumps are expensive which is why I still to this day, dedicated nursing mom that I am, have a simple affordable version. Why aren't some of the pump companies advocating the way the formula companies are? If a mother expresses an interest in nursing why can't they offer that mother a pump in her goody bag? $$$$$ Once you buy the pump and supplies there is very little upkeep you must do - maybe you buy replacement parts or freezer bags, but you aren't going to be investing 30.00 a week on their product for at least a year... Can't the pump manufacturers do something here to offer a choice?!?!?!

The debate on the forum quickly moved away from this topic and onto the decision to nurse or bottle feed. I often feel like my nursing is not nearly as accepted as bottle feeding. I have begun to get questions about how long I intend on nursing and I sometimes feel like people are uncomfortable around me if I need to feed my child. Whereas a bottle fed baby's mom can whip out that bottle without any looks, I need to hide my child under a blanket right? Wrong. Bottle feeding moms feel the same shame that us nursing moms feel. They feel like people look at them the same way we think people look at us. Isn't it all just too ridiculous? The debate raged on and though it seems to have tapered down, the sides needed to declare a truce. Do you see my point? WOMEN SUPPORTING WOMEN - Why oh why can we not just support one another... it absolutely baffles me...

So nurse your baby - bottle feed your baby - just feed your baby and love your baby --- that's all that REALLY matters and if you and I make different decisions that doesn't make one of us wrong or one of us right. Period.


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