Friday, July 4, 2014

Weaning My Little One: Diary of A New Mum

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When I had my first born, weaning was something we had a really really hard time with. Maybe it was because we were first time parents, and there was so much information and advice coming in from so many places that we got confused.

I exclusively fed my baby for the first six months, we no formula or anything. Once she was 6 months, we started giving her solids little by little. I was feeding her till she was 2 years, but then had to suddenly stop as I developed some infection.

That was one really bad time, not so much for me, as for my baby. She was 2 years old, and she needed me a lot for her feeds then, and somehow, she was not able to adjust to the fact that I stopped feeding her. It was a really tough time, with her refusing to take any bottle at all, and only begging for a feed. We had a really difficult time getting her back on track.

So, when I had my second baby, I was pretty sure that I would wean her off earlier, and in a way that would be smooth for her.

I exclusively fed her again for the first 6 months. Though we were traveling for a wedding, and her doctor suggested we could give her formula milk since she was 5 months old then, we tried once, she didn't want, and we were happily back to feed.

Once she was 6 months, we started her on the following: (but this was done very gradually, like one new item for a week and moving on to more but one by one)
  • daal ka pani
  • rice water
  • sooji
  • khichdi
  • vegetable soup
  • cerelac (while traveling)
  • mashed banana
  • boiled apple
  • mashed boiled rice
  • sweet potato
We gradually moved on to non veg once she was 9months old and started her on chicken, fish and eggs.

Thankfully for us, she was really enjoying the food and looked forward to eating her meals. So much so that the moment she would see her bowls or spoon, she would start jumping and asking for food. And once she finished her own, she wanted to eat what her sister was eating as well (or we!)

The part I was worried about was the milk. We didn't give her any additional feed (powdered or otherwise) till she was about 9 months old. Then, we began giving her the regular carton milk that we get from Amul.

Contrary to what most moms told me, that I should give her formula milk, I chose to give her regular toned cow's milk from Amul. We prefer the carton version as there is no worry about boiling and cooling and all that, and each time we travel anywhere, we carry a few of these cartons/tetra packs with us. That takes care of giving her milk even if we are staying in a hotel.

I started slowly at first. A bottle in the day, when she was not very sleepy. Other times I would still be feeding her. Gradually I started tucking it in more often, about 2 more times in the day, when she would generally take a feed. She has a habit of having at least a bit of milk even after a full meal.

Now she is about to be 11 months and I have been giving her the bottle for the last few weeks (2 weeks or so.) I have stopped feeding her in the night, and she has about 2 bottles through the night, which is 250ml each.

At the moment her feeding has completely stopped. She is only on outside milk and is doing fine. Though she did get cranky a few times when I was giving her the bottle, I realised it was because she was already quite tired and sleepy by then and did not want a bottle. I have now started ensuring I give her her meal and the bottle when she is in a good mood and not too hungry or tired. That keeps enough time to burp her and change her and put her down to sleep. It also ensures she does not fall off to sleep with a bottle in her mouth.

Right now, she is about to turn 11 months old, and she is eating everything and anything that is cooked at home, including oats biscuits and such. We cook the same meals for all of us, without any spice (mirchi) and she happily has all the vegetables, rice, roti, daal and everything that we have.

The transition has been pretty smooth as of now. I know when and how much milk she needs, and have also managed to let her take a bottle from hubby, which she generally didn't do earlier but now is okay with.

I wanted to ideally nurse her till her first birthday, but as she seems to be adjusting well to this new routine, will hold on to that as of now.

- Debolina Raja Gupta

And like I always believe in and say:
'Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children' - MJ

Happy Parenting!!!! Be good to your little one, and to the millions of little ones out there who truly need every bit of love and compassion they can get.....Be a grown the little ones.... Debolina Raja Gupta
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