This post will be really taboo to many of you but I feel it just needs to be said. My son has been on donor breast milk now for over 4 months! He is thriving! He is nearly 7 months old and close to 20lbs! Not only is he just big, but he is solid. He came out solid! I had him very naturally in a birthing tub without the use of any drugs. He was a much different birth than my pitocin-induced, stuck on my back, starving to death, birth of my oldest 3-year-old daughter. And the reason for going natural with him was, simply, because I wanted to see what real birth felt like. And if I have another baby, I will be having him naturally without drugs. I loved my experience with my son! It was so real and I felt so alive!
Immediately after he was born, I nursed him. He was a champion nurser. He latched on wonderfully. We were in our groove for 2 months. Then the most unexpected happened. My younger sister died. About 30 minutes after she passed away, my son needed to nurse. And I’m not kidding you when I say that I tried to nurse my baby but NOTHING would come out! It was as if my boobs stopped working. Physiologically it makes sense. Your brain is very connected to the function of breastfeeding and stress is one of the worst inhibitors of milk supply.
I was stuck. What would cavewoman have done? She would have given him to another mama in her village to nurse him, but that doesn’t happen anymore…so I thought. So, to the store to buy formula I went…and out the mouth of my baby, every formula I tried, went. He could not stomach commercial formula. As if the grief of losing my sister wasn’t hard enough, I now had a fussy, colicky baby to deal with. Then a miracle happened.
One of my friends gave me some frozen breast milk to try. I thought it was gross at first but then started researching it. It wasn’t gross, in fact it was what many cultures do in my kind of situation. I learned that clean, donated breast milk was the 2nd best option (mother’s breast milk being the first best). I learned how to trust my son’s donors. He began thriving again! In the few short weeks he was on formula he had lost nearly a pound, and he was only 2 months old…not good. I used a few different sites to find donated breast milk and for 4 months he has been solely on it! But lately, our milk stash has run short. I scrambled to find answers on what to do. I was so fearful to put him back on commercial formula. Then someone asked me if I had heard about the Weston A. Price’s homemade formula recipe. I had heard of it since we had followed the practices of Nourishing Traditions for 3 years now, but my son did so terrible on cow’s milk formula that I was worried about giving him cow’s milk. So, I researched it more and saw that I could substitute goat’s milk. We are using the Meyenberg powdered goat milk and I’m adding vitamins and supplements to it. He is only taking it half the day and the other half is donated breast milk. He is doing ok on it. He still spits up a ton, but not as much as he does on commercial formula. You can find the recipe I’m using here: https://www.westonaprice.org/childrens-health/recipes-for-homemade-baby-formula#vgmf , but I still am looking for donations for my little man. I would love to make it to, at least, a year on donated breast milk…more if I can! Please, please, please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have some milk you would like to share with us. We are more than willing to pay for shipping and supplies. I will gladly replace your storage baggies. We are also willing to drive 100 miles (we live in Savannah, GA) in the surrounding area to pick up milk. You can find me on Facebook: Jackie Ritz, or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org !