Happy half a year birthday little Harry!! Well, I say ‘little’ but there isn’t anything particularly ‘little’ about my chunky monkey; today’s weigh-in confirmed that my 10 kilo monster is tracking the 98th centile very nicely thank you very much. He’s not supposed to be that big: breastfed babies are traditionally smaller than their formula-fed counterparts… allegedly!! Perhaps it’s the quantity of cake that I’ve consumed whilst feeding him, or perhaps I’ve just been feeding him too much (not possible to overfeed a breastfed baby is the mantra, I do believe!)….whatever it is, and I think he’s just a tall boy that will thin out eventually, the last six months have largely been filled with feeding, day and night.
And I wouldn’t change a thing about it.
I feel privileged to have had an easy time and lots of support at the beginning (not so with no 1 son) and proud that we have come this far. Feeding your baby is the most wonderful and most draining thing all at the same time and its bloody hard work! Whilst its true that there are no bottles to sterilise or kettles to boil, feeding on demand is just that…demanding. But I’ve loved every minute of it. I loved the constant suckling of the first 2 days of Harry’s life and I’ve loved that every couple of hours, we get to snuggle together. I haven’t really minded all the night feeds either and this time round, I haven’t felt taunted by the mums of formula-fed babies whose little ones sleep through the night. I’m not judging feeding choices here…far from it…and I know that for some, it is not a ‘choice’. But the perceived race to get your child to sleep sometimes feels alienating to someone who has chosen to truly feed ‘on-demand’. This time, I don’t care!
So ‘big’ Harry is six months today and the weaning is just starting. Although I intend to continue feeding him, this marks quite an important point as, up until now, all 22lbs of him has come from me and now it’s time to begin to loosen that tie. I’m excited for him that he gets to experience new things, but I’m also mourning the passing of the first stage of his life. Six months signals all sorts of things: sitting upright in the big buggy (although he’s been doing that for months…there’s no way I could squeeze him into any cocoon after 3 months!!); eating food; moving into the nursery (sort of, possibly…usually ending up in our bed!) – all things that move my little boy onwards on his journey. I’m sad, but I’m ready.