It’s great. It’s fem-affirming, it’s convenient and man-o-man is it ever cheap.
Here’s the thing that I notice most, now that we’re 4-months into this thing, having my 2 previous children on formula by this point: it’s exhausting being the sole source of sustenance for this little person.
And really? Motherhood is exhausting enough. Well, motherhood for an infant anyway. Once the kids are sleeping soundly through the night (yeah, yeah, “6 hours is considered sleeping through the night,” you helpfully point out. To that I say nuh-uh and you know it too) the exhaustion I experienced was primarily of my own making.
I’m not talking about just the getting-up-at-3/4AM-to-feed-her exhaustion, I’m talking about the feeding every 3 hours, the changing of diapers (some times clothes too), the reading, the singing, the floor time, the chair time, the do-whatever-she-needs time. I’m talking too – especially today – about the crying times.
What, for the love of all that is good and holy, do you want, sweet child of mine?!?!?
I mean seriously: I hold you, you cry. I rock you and sing to you, you cry. I feed you. You are quiet for a moment but pop off to remind me – through more crying – that this is not going to placate you for ever. I put you on your floor mat, you cry. I pick you up, you cry some more. I put you in your swing: yet more tears. Car seat, crib, bath, all of it: no dice.
But I digress. You’ll forgive me, I know, because I am tired. I am tired of being yelled at all day. And I’m tired of being the only one who feeds her (yes, I have a pump. Yes, I use said pump. And there are 4 bottles in the freezer waiting to be consumed. But it takes a while to get enough pumped to make a bottle, and MOMD & I are looking at taking some time away so those bottles are reserved gold right now). I would love love love to take off. To pick up MOMD from the train one evening and head somewhere… else. A beloved friend has offered to care for our 3 kids, giving us some time away. And I want to take her up on it, like… right now. Like every thing else though, it takes planning and preparing.
And so, I continue.
To feed (and not just the baby but the whole family), to soothe when possible, to entertain and be entertained. All the while I must remember to cherish these moments, because as so many helpful people point out, “the moments are fleeting,” or “You’re going to miss this,” or “before you know it they’ll be grown up with children of their own.” And while at the moment I do not at all appreciate these sentiments, I know they are true.
For she is my last baby.