A Hard Month

Since Penelope was born we've been told, constantly, how lucky we are. Our child has barely ever cried, and has never had trouble sleeping or playing independently.

JINX (although, I don't believe in those things, but you get my point)

The past few weeks have been so, so hard. We aren't too sure what is going on, but I have basically narrowed it down to:
a) teething
b) low milk supply
c) just plain..boredom?

Penelope cries mostly during the day, and is happy and calm when we go outside for walks or for a fun outings. I go out a lot during the day, but it's exhausting to be constantly pushing my stroller, and where we live there isn't really anything to walk to.

We've actually started supplementing my chubby monkey with formula (PLEASE no comments about that!), since I feel empty all the time, and she calms down when I give her the formula. We're just trying to do whatever will help her, but I am struggling with never knowing what to do.

At our recent doctor's visit we were told to basically just keep doing what we're doing. My doctor said not too worry if I have to supplement with formula, and if she seems to want it to just give it to her (even though she's weighing in at the 75th percentile).

ALSO, we're moving this weekend! I'm both excited and nervous about moving. Excited because we're near lots of shops and fun things to do, so I can actually get out on my own and be outside for a good chunk of the day. Nervous because I'm going to be home alone a lot more, since my Mom won't be around, and I'm already feeling exhausted and at the end of my rope.

I'm off to enjoy whatever peace and quiet I have while my child naps.

she's still my little angel!


  1. just one formula comment (you KNOW I'm in favour of it, so no worries there): don't be ashamed. I can tell by this post that you're on the defense before anyone's even said anything. You know your body, your baby, and you made the decision. period. don't be ashamed, especially if Penny is thriving! You are a GREAT mom.

    also - babies have stages and they never stay in one for long. Oli just started waking 1-2 times after his 6pm bedtime and we have no idea why. usually just cries and cries. probably teething, but it's frustrating! he was our happy baby (Lily was a good sleeper but not as happy go lucky as he)! but I know this season will be short and will pass, just gotta keep that in mind :)

    1. thx emily!! the reminder that it's a phase is important, since this is our first "phase" so it's hard to think of it as temporary!

      and you're totally right about being on the defensive about formula feeding. So far I have had lots of hurtful comments but I think coming out about it will help me to embrace this decision and get support from other mamas like you!! Ill try not to be as defensive though :)

    2. ahhh i wish those who have been saying negative things would gain some perspective! what is worse? a baby not thriving or a baby not drinking breastmilk? common!

    3. Emily makes a great point!!

  2. Here's the truth, sweet mama--as soon as you feel like you have it all figured out and you have a solid routine something happens (sometimes you know what it is, like a sickness or teeth pop through or they grow two inches in a month; sometimes there is no apparent reason at all and you feel helpless!) and everything changes. The routines that worked quit working. The methods that soothed your tired baby leave them red-faced and screaming at bedtime. Your sweet, sleeping baby just doesn't any more. And it feels like as a mama (and daddy--a lot if this is really hard on daddy, too!) you have to hit the reset button and start all over.

    Also, re: formula, you know my heartache there. It was at 4 months that we realized I just didn't make enough milk. I look at Rog's 4 month pic and he's so skinny and, for me, it was my own pride and fear that caused me to put off formula, and my heart still cringes. I have to cry out to Jesus all over again because it just kills me that I was so blind to how desperately thin my baby was getting because I barely made any milk at that point :( And you know I tried EVERYTHING from herb drops that made me vomit to pumping after nursing and power pumping (where you pump for an hour, stop for an hour, pump, stop, etc) to carefully timed drinking of a hoppy beer to even trying medication. None of it worked. What I regret, personally, is all the times Roger was screaming and hungry after nursing and wanting mama but I was too busy telling him, "Just a few more minutes," because I was trying to pump and "get my supply up." When we finally quit nursing at five months (and I never leaked or was sore even once, that's how pathetically low my supply was) I had a happy, growing, blissful boy. Suddenly he slept and was just happy all the time :) And the thought that Roger might get cancer at age 2 and it was my fault for not giving him breast milk antibodies long enough is just absurd. If Jesus' good plan ever included illness for Rog it's not on me; Jesus wasn't surprised by my low-milk supply. He allowed it and made the body that didn't make enough milk, and I can worship & trust him.

    Point being, you've seen Rog grow and he's just about as happy and healthy as they come. Jesus has blessed us greatly and anytime I see breastfeeding nazis trying to guilt trip me I cling to Christ and remember his good will, his good plan, and that my identity is hidden in him.

    I'm so sorry for your hard time but I do pray you run to Jesus through it. Motherhood is so amazing and so hard and so beautiful; it's how you cleave to Jesus through the pain and joy and even repenting of your own sin that will tell Pen how real and good and loving Jesus is :)

  3. I had a completely breast-fed kid with nothing added to his diet until 9 months, and I had a bottle-fed kid from the age of 10 weeks old. They are both happy & healthy teenagers now! I did what was best for my body, my husband (cause he was at the end of his rope too!) and my kids at the time. If there is something available that lessens your stress, and calms your baby, don't feel guilty about it or think you are doing something wrong! I can relate to everything Tami is saying above - I had one horrific experience with breast feeding, and one that started horrificly but ended wonderfully. I also had kids that seemed to get into a nice pattern, and then out of the blue would decide to try something new! At one point for about 4 months, with 2 babies 19 months apart, I was getting approx. 3 hours of sleep a day because they were on different sleep schedules. There will be stress - you will think you will go crazy - you won't, and you will live to tell your story and encourage someone else! I have a page in my journal from 16 years ago when we were struggling with Delia sleeping through the night, and I put on headphones in one room, and Wayne put on headphones in another, and I wrote a whole page of "I am the worst mother in the world". I go back and read it from time to time when I start to question the decisions I'm making now with my teens. We all have doubts at every stage, and we all have stressers at every stage. They pass. We survive. And so will you.

  4. Formula comment! Hahah.
    1. You are doing a good thing for your daughter. Formula has everything she needs.
    2. I found that Blessed Thistle & Fenugreek increased my milk supply.

  5. thx everybody for your wonderful and kind comments, sorry if this post was a bit complainy!


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