This month of breastfeeding coincided with my 75th month of breastfeeding. And so this is my breastfeeding diamonthsary! I breastfed my eldest child (now 12 years old) for 18 months, my 2nd child (who is 5 years old) for 30 months and right now, I am still breastfeeding my third child who is 27 months old. Put end to end, I have been breastfeeding for 75 months. I am gradually weaning my youngest now.
First off, I am a non-judgmental breastfeeding advocate. I know there are women who simply cannot breastfeed due to physical or career reasons and I respect their decision. I maintain, though, that breast milk is the best for babies and I would wish all babies were breastfed.
Here are 75 things I learned from the 75 months I’ve been breastfeeding.
- I have learned that breastfeeding is time-consuming but so worth it. Let me tell you why.
- I have learned to use my breastfeeding time to pray, with my prayer list in hand.
- I have learned to use my morning breastfeeding time to plan for the rest of my day.
- I have learned to use my afternoon breastfeeding time to take a nap.
- I have learned to use other breastfeeding times to read. Oh how much I have learned, with a wi-fi phone or tablet in hand. I’ve read up on news, blogs and many other stuff.
- I have learned to use my nightly breastfeeding time to review my day.
- I have learned that, really, breastfeeding times have given me back time that I need to just lie down. I tend to be workaholic and would weary myself before lying down.
- I have also computed that with an average breastfeeding time per day of 1 hour, I would have breastfed for 1x30x75 = 2,250 hours.
- I have learned to think of those 2,250 hours as 2,250 hours of hugging my kids close.
- Breastfeeding then, has given me 2,250 hours of stroking my baby’s forehead.
- Breastfeeding has given me 2,250 hours of pinching my baby’s butt.
- Breastfeeding has given me 2,250 hours of giving my baby backrub. All my three kids love a backrub from Mama.
- I have learned to be just like my mother—a shameless breastfeeding mom. Breastfeeding is natural and I can breastfeed anywhere.
- I have breastfed in very public places—church, malls (right on benches), busses, bus terminals, boats, airplane, parks, doctors’ clinics. Anywhere.
- As a preacher’s wife, I lead quite a public life and I have breastfed while entertaining a visitor or having a church activity.
- I have learned that breastfeeding has saved our family so much money.
- I have computed that had I spent a thousand pesos a month (some spent so much more) of formula milk for all 75 months that I have been breastfeeding my 3 kids, I would have spent 75,000 pesos to date.
- Breastfeeding has saved me from the expenses of buying and washing milk bottles.
- Breastfeeding has saved me from hours of washing milk bottles.
- Breastfeeding has saved me detergent and water used in washing milk bottles.
- Breastfeeding has saved me gas used for sterilizing baby bottles.
- Breastfeeding has done away with hungry babies impatiently crying while waiting for milk to be mixed and cooled down.
- Breastfeeding has saved me from lugging around bulky paraphernalia when going out or during travel.
- I sat next to a formula-feeding mom in a boat and I simply had my breasts and my baby while she had a thermos, a thermos bag, milk dispenser, warmer and baby bottles.
- I have learned to breastfeed while eating. I have perfected the art of eating with one hand while supporting a nursing baby with the other.