Thursday, October 30, 2014

Breastfeeding goals, writ small

I've been experiencing a low supply problem with breastfeeding, and this past week Freddie has been going through a growth spurt, making that harder.  But rather than bore you with the details, I'm just going to share my approach.  We've been trying out YNAB for our finances this month, and while it's similar to the Google spreadsheet we'd been forever tinkering with before, this is way better, and keeps us more focused.  I like the CONSTANT VIGILANCE but also hey man it's cool you overspent in the lunch budget, let's just move stuff around and remember you're not a failure, just work with what you have two-pronged approach.  It's all about breaking up long-term goals into manageable chunks rather than going at it government-style and trying to forecast and budget money you don't physically have at the moment.

I'm taking the YNAB approach to breastfeeding, in that from here on out, I'm going to simply concern myself with the amount of milk I have, rather than try to worry about the amount of milk I'm going to have.  This week I have an amount of milk in the freezer and fridge which will cover, say, 4 days.  Anything I pump is a bonus, but I'm not factoring it into my long-term breastfeeding goals.  I am no longer trying to breastfeed for a year, for six months, or a week.  I have enough breastmilk for four days, so I'm trying to breastfeed for four days.  If I get to the end of those four days and I have more breastmilk saved up, great!  I'm going to try to breastfeed for however many days that will cover.  No more long-term visionary plan.  That's simply too big and stressful to think about.  I need smaller chunks of the pie to work towards.  And when the supply issue makes it clear that hey, I don't have enough to cover that goal, then to the store for formula (already researched and picked out) we go to supplement.

This feels way more mentally manageable, and somehow makes me feel slightly more in control and less of a failure.  I have a plan.  It's kind of a shitty plan, since it's not ideal.  But life isn't ideal, maaaan.  I'm doing everything I reasonably can to breastfeed my daughter as long as I can, and right now "as long as I can" looks like 4 days, according to my "budget".  So, if I make it that long, I'm successful and have reached that goal.  And we'll go from there.


  1. <3 So much love for these struggles and these plans. Please don't forget that IT'S OKAY. Whatever you end up doing, it's okay. You are giving this child an incredible amount of love that will translate in the best childhood ever. Entire generations were brought up solely on formula. If you have to switch to it earlier than originally planned, whatevs! You are doing great.

    1. Thank you -- It's like, I know in theory it's really truly okay. It's just hard to know that, and then still feel feelings. You're right -- the love conquers that.