Formal means, according to a basic Google search, is a list of ingredients for something.
Baby’s are part of both man and woman. In my opinion, of the creation of God. And from God, all things were made with the perfect solution to any possible question humans have.
One is breastmilk vs formula.
I always go back to the thought of the industrial revolution where machines made human life a little easier to live but also brought in so many problems. Problems we have gone and turned a blind eye to for a few generations now.
There have always been cheats in the world of selling, buying, and trading where a consumer gets ripped off and is worse off than where they began.
I feel that is what is going on with the recent news of baby formula being shipped to southern borders and with our grocery stores seeing limited stock.
Before news broke at the end of the week about formula shortages, I had seen a social media post of a woman asking where she can receive a temporary supply of breastmilk. As a new mom again, after about an eleven-year gap, and currently breastfeeding, I had some questions when I saw comments come across for groups and organizations where to get breast milk from.
Then several memes and news articles began popping up on my own accounts of those who favor breastmilk over formula, and all the middle ground debates on the topic.
In 2011, my first son was born and like my mother and her long generation of women to breastfeed their children, I was determined to as well. All my life I wanted to be a mother. I play-acted as a mom to my many cousins when they would come to visit, so I’ve had lots of practice. Later, I’ll share the practice of my dream of being a teacher where I post about homeschooling.
The thought of not being a mom never crossed my mind. But in 2011, I was also dealing with separation for a divorce that was inevitable due to abuse from a toxic person.
With a divorce, a mom to a very young child is faced with so much in regards to rearranging her life to become a single mom. Fortunately for me, I had family and friends’ support throughout my divorce.
One thing that I was determined to not let the divorce impact our lives, was the bond of mother and child, and our established way of feeding through breastfeeding.
It became apparent early on that the other side tried to force this unbreakable bond of mother and son to its core. Part of that core is the tie of a baby’s food source. Ours again was breastmilk.
It was a conversation that I had before marriage, during the marriage, during pregnancy, and past delivery, that I would breastfeed for as long as I could, with the exception of not going beyond a certain age. But when it came time to discuss weaning, we would talk again for an easy transition for our son.
One topic of conversation was that with breastfeeding, we could save money from buying formula and not have to deal with deciding which brand, or the dreaded scenario, what if the baby doesn’t like it and gets colicky or thrush? I was not willing to go this route as long as I was healthy to breastfeed, I was going to do everything to make it happen and have a good healthy supply of milk. And I did end up having a great supply of milk.
Many women alike know that when the topic of breastfeeding goes past a certain age, men get vocal about our bodies and the development of children. Not all cases are extreme like mine, but for the women who understand that men think children are on some time frame when it comes to nursing, it affects spouses and causes disagreements and fights.
I just didn’t have the loving support of a true man when it came to raising our son. And the lack of love played out through the court and custody battle.
Not a topic I enjoy talking about much, but since the outcry for formula has erupted, it brings that stressful time back to my memories.
Through the custody battle, I had to fight not only for justice, as you may discover through past online petitions and news articles of family court corruption, but for the right to continue to breastfeed my son. Many times you’ll hear that breastfeeding my son was “disgusting”, “gross”, and whatever other word they tossed around to the judge’s ear.
As I mentioned above, they wanted to shatter my bond, and to do that was to break apart things that created emotional, mental, and developmental bonds. Which they began to accomplish by creating longer visitations away from me; knowing he was a breastfed child.
I remember the moment I met a woman in the grocery store who bought something that caught my eye in the checkout line. We started up a conversation and it was as if we had been waiting to be friends for so long. She introduced me to a woman she worked with at the hospital and her daughter because she was a nurse in the maternity ward.
We planned a breastfeeding meeting soon after, for new moms wanting the support to nurse their babies. It was okay that I wasn’t a mom to a newborn, but to a toddler so I could give testimony of my experience since I would be the mom who has breastfed the longest-in terms of age of our child.
The turnout was so amazing in our community. I had never been a part of something like that. Just like I’ve never been around someone who’s been divorced and let alone, a very complex situation in custody. I’ve felt alone for so long.
But I had my son during this mom and baby get-together, and I could share a little bit about my situation. How I’ve been able to keep the bond going strong with my son and still nurse him. I told them that several people, women included, wanted to stop me from nursing my toddler. (A younger-aged toddler at that.) My son was a little shy to be around so many babies, it was a humbling experience for us both.
I mentioned that despite the uproar and outcry they tried to create in their narrative for court hearings about me breastfeeding, I kept on. I had to. I could see the changes and toll it was taking on my son. Workload as a mom got tougher working my custody case 24/7 to keep up with the lies, but now to help a child navigate through a broken family at an early age.
I was sure to mention, that if anyone in their lives tried to do the same thing, let it not affect them. Everything is possible when a mother wants the best for her child. That society should not have a say in what we do for our children, meaning things which are for their benefit, health, and growth. Our children depend on us for food. And, God gave us the food to provide for them.
My own mom had worked at the same time she was still nursing my siblings and me. Her work allowed her to pump during working hours, by giving her privacy in her office to do so. They were all about family support. Less than I can say for the military “family support and advocacy” that I thought was available for me.
Though people may be against breastfeeding, it comes down to only the mother and child. No one else is responsible for raising your child(ren). If you planned on breastfeeding as your way of feeding, then hold strong and true to your decision. If it’s your ideal plan to continue nursing through the baby stage and into toddler years, then good for you, and cheers to longer health and immune support for your child. If you plan to continue to breastfeed while being a full-time mom, then good for you. There are many ways to continue breastfeeding. Stay-at-home moms to the working mom, it’s all possible if you want to see it through.
I don’t believe a mom should be shamed for breastfeeding, no matter the situation she is in. As we see today, I’m sure many babies are suffering from experiencing hunger for the first time because of the formula shortages. I have always hoped that women fight for what their bodies weren’t designed to do if they were blessed with motherhood. God gave us the gift of making life, as well as food to support that life we grew. It was all thoroughly thought out.
Why should a man try to create the wheel when we see recalls and low production of a “replacement” with baby formula?
If you need help feeding your child, I encourage you to ask for help wherever you can. Many women and mom groups do have some wonderful ladies who can provide answers.
Those reading this, please feel free to comment with linking resources available for support or stocked food banks.
Blessings to human motherhood.