Yesterday afternoon I gave Ciaran SMA for the first time. I had planned to carry on with expressed milk but I realised in the afternoon that he was screaming after a breast feed and that I hadn’t taken any milk out of the freezer. I found one of the emergency cartons of SMA at the back of a cupboard (DH got them when Ciaran was a couple of weeks old and hit his first growth spurt – we thought my milk had dried up lol!). I dusted it off and checked the best before date and then tipped it into a sterilied bottle.
I gave him about 5oz and to my (and my visiting mum’s) amazement he knocked it back – he gave a funny look after the first gulp as if to say “what is this Mummy? It tastes a bit different” and then contentedly fed. He sat happily for the rest of the afternoon, sitting up on his nannies lap and playing trains with her and Ben (we all have to pretend to be a train, we take Ben to the shops, he gets off and then we all go home – boring to an adult but exciting for a toddler!).
That evening I decided I wasn’t going to waste the rest of the carton and gave Ciaran the last 3oz in between breast feeds before putting him to sleep. As I sat with him cuddled into my arm in the darkened nursery I realised that giving him a bottle wouldn’t be tinged with guilt like it was for Ben; I had exclusively breast fed him for 18 weeks, I loved feeding him but now I felt that it was best for Ciaran, Ben and I if we introduced a bottle. Who knows I might still breast feed him a couple of times a day until he starts solids, I might not, but either way I don’t think I will have the same black cloud of guilt that I had when I put Ben onto the bottle.
The only problem is that I still breast feed him to sleep and need to knock that on the head at some point if I ever want to have a life (or people willing to baby sit for me!).