Sunday, July 24, 2011

Dear Kal: I love your face...

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Adoption and Breastfeeding

Kal at 18 weeks old

I am totally pro-breastfeeding. Breast is best... I definitely think that. But I understand that not everyone's situation is the same and not everyone chooses to breastfeed or can breastfeed. I think a lot of women give each other crap about their breastfeeding decisions (whether or not to breastfeed and how long to do it, etc.)... and I really wish we could just unite as women and support each other rather than tear each other down when it comes to bearing and raising children. Women can be harsh and hate on each other like nobody's business!

But I digress!

I didn't put much thought into breastfeeding after I transitioned my brain over from trying to conceive to adoption. I just thought that it was obvious that Kal would be a formula baby and I was about 90% okay with that (and that was good enough for me). After the fact, I've learned so much about stimulating milk production in the adoptive mother and about breast milk donors (including the birth mother donating her milk to the adoptive mother)... that I kind of wished I had done more research as soon as we knew we were going to adopt. Maybe we could have figured out a plan to make sure he could've been exclusively fed breast milk for at least the first few months.


We have been lucky enough to have some breast milk donated to us from a friend that we've been using back and forth with formula. He's been taking it pretty well and doesn't appear to get an upset stomach or anything from switching back and forth. That supply is really limited, though. So it'll run out soon (I'm thinking we've got about a month left) and we'll be back to exclusively formula feeding.

I guess I just wonder what I would do with a second adoption...? I'm not sure I crave that "connection" that actually breastfeeding would provide, so I don't know if I'd go the route of taking hormones and stimulating my own production. It might cause me a lot of stress, actually. Messing with my hormones always puts me on a track to crazytown... fertility meds were enough! Plus I work, so pumping would be a serious nightmare. I think if the birth mother lived close and offered to donate, I sure wouldn't say no.

Just interesting to think about.

Side note: Both Zay and my brother think it's friggin' gross that Kal drinks donated breast milk and they refused to help make bottles at first. Ha ha. My brother comes in, opens the freezer and says, "What is this - ice cream?" Lol. Noooooo, not ice cream! But I don't think it's a big deal at all... Is it really that taboo to share breast milk in today's world?

They also really do make ice cream out of breast milk. Check it out.

Stay-At-Home Daddy

Zay stays home with Kal while I go off to work everyday. We're not your typical Mormon family, but that's okay. We do what works for us and we don't mind being unconventional. :) I guess I could say he's more of a work-at-home dad, since he still has many barbering clients that he attends to. But his main priority is taking care of Kal... and he's so awesome at it!

I don't mind leaving everyday to go to work, because nothing makes my heart just melt the way it does when I see my two favorite guys together. They have formed such an amazing bond and Zay just cannot wait for him to get older so he can teach him how to play basketball (Zay's first love...). Plus, he is a much better organizer/cleaner and cook than I am... so it just kind of fits.

And I was soooo blessed to get the job that I did (at the time that I did) so that we were even able to adopt Kal! I'm so grateful for it and I don't take it for granted! Kal gives me all the motivation I need to drag myself out of bed every morning, so I do it with a genuinely happy smile on my face and a pep in my step. Ha ha ha. People seriously look at me suspiciously when I'm happy at work on a Monday. But I don't care. I just keep smiling.

I get pictures like these sent to me throughout the day that just thrill me!

One of the reasons Kal's birthmother chose an adoption plan for her son was because she wanted him to have two parents - a mom and a dad - to raise him. I'm so grateful that Zay and I are in a position to offer him something that he might not have otherwise had. As awesome as Zay was before we adopted Kal, now that he has a son to raise and set a good example for, he's been making such great changes in his life and steps forward in his walk with Christ. I love it! He wants his little daddy's boy (who no doubt will want to go wherever his daddy goes) to follow in good footsteps... and follow him to heaven. He's been working hard as a stay-at-home daddy (something only a real man could pull off, I think) and I'm so happy things have worked out the way they have. :)

And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)

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