I feel like my breasts are useless. I have a baby who needs to be fed. And I’m wracked with grief again because I may have used them for the very last time already. I comforted my girl in the hospital and she took in a tiny bit of colostrum.
It’s a drop in the stupid bucket because I know what I am capable of. And cancer took that away from me.
There are 5 agonizing weeks where I could use them to feed her. I really could. Except then my life would be at risk again. They would be engorged and filled with milk during surgery and the risk of severe complications will impare my recovery. But there is so much time between now and then for me to resent this commitment.
Yeah, she’s doing great on formula. Yeah, she gobbles it down. Yeah, it’ll sustain her and save her life and she will thrive.
But I hate the way it smells.
I hate how it makes her breath smells.
I hate the color of her poops.
This life saving replacement makes me so upset and resentful. I’m angry.
Formula is the right option for so many people for so many reasons. It’s just that my reasons are not my own. This is not my choice. This is an ultimatum. And I hate being backed into a corner when I was a rockstar feeding my firstborn from my own body for more than a year. It’s not just a bond for me, it’s a promise and a commitment and a protection.
This is no easy way out. This is far more difficult because it requires so much more forethought and careful sterilization. Now more than ever because my second child is born premature.
With George I was so confident going to visit places because I knew he would never go hungry if I was with him. I could always, always, provide for him with just my breathing body. Now I have to rely on past Brianna to always keep it together and make sure we have supplies. Sterile supplies. Formula. Sterile water. Sterile mixing and storage.
It is a daunting prospect. Sometimes I let myself down. When it’s my own hunger or my own discomfort, I have only the weight of my own life and I can reason with myself and make compromises and be patient. I have no grace or patience for any person who would require compromise, patience, or reasoning with a child of any age over their hunger. I give myself no room for error. And that rigidity frightens me of not meeting my children’s needs and my expectations.
So I am angry at the formula that was so generously handed to me. It’s a literal gold mine stacked up in my living room and I hate the sight of it.
I am sad and angry but I want to come to peace with it. I need to find grace and come to terms with my circumstances because this resentment is no way to live.
To be continued.
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