Anna was 8 pounds, 13 oz. and full of squeaks and cries from the moment she entered the world. So much so that the pediatric nurse declared that this one was going to rule the roost.
It is amazing to me that having a baby is such a routine event and yet so miraculous. I know that several women, in rooms next to mine, have already birthed an infant, and several more will be born at Milford Hospital before the day is through and yet, to me, a life-changing event has occurred.
Now, the work begins and, as parents, we are faced with choices of how to start our child’s life.
The very first question is whether to bottle or breast feed. Research falls squarely in the breast feeding category and as a mother who breast-fed two children, I agree.
According to kidshealth.org, “The American Academy of Pediatrics joins other organizations such as the American Medical Association, the American Dietetic Association, and the World Health Organization in recommending breastfeeding as the best for babies.”
Much of the research from these organizations concludes that, “Breastfeeding helps defend against infections, prevent allergies, and protect against a number of chronic conditions.”
It is often called the perfect food for babies and nourishes all their nutritional needs for the first six months of life.
Yet, I know what a difficult and frustrating experience it is. When it comes to nourishing your child, if breast feeding isn’t working, how could you deny your baby?
Commercial formulas are monitored by the Food and Drug Administration and do a good job of replicating breast milk, providing all the known vitamins and minerals needed. They continue to move closer to an exact match.
In addition, breast feeding is very restricting. You cannot leave your baby's side for more than a few hours. Many women can’t or don’t want to be that tied down.
If there is one time that I wish I chose bottle feeding, it is the middle of the night when I am sure my husband should be having a turn feeding the baby.
In the end, every woman should make the choice that suits her and her family best. Whether you choose to breast or bottle feed, your baby will grow and be nourished.