So for today I have a great post from a lovely lady that I am afraid to say I stalk on a regular basis, i am a true fan of her insta story duets with the hubby and how to raise 3 boys, a mini dog and cat ( I actually have no idea how she makes it look so darn stylish) . Sareta like me has a little one with dairy free needs and she has kindly shared her story of how having a little one with dietary issues can have many hard times and can often be a long journey of worries and stresses.
OK, I admit it, I judged and now I am reaping karma from my lack of knowledge and perhaps for falling for society’s ‘stupidness’. I was one of those people who side-eyed mothers for breastfeeding their kids. When I say kids I mean kids with teeth. Toddlers, big kids, kids who talk and actually ask for milk and pull out your boob out in the middle of Asda kind of kids. Because of this my youngest, who I breastfed until society deemed it ok, is diary intolerant. You got me good karma, le sigh.
I wasn’t able to breastfeed my eldest due to him being in intensive care when he was born. I breastfed my second for about 3 months, he was labeled as a “hungry baby”, so I couldn’t keep up with his demand. I wish I had more information about this because we could have gotten around it. When it came to baby number three I was prepared. I went to lessons, bought a special pillow (totally didn’t need that) and took Fenugreek everyday just incase. (Fenugreek has been proven to increase milk supply). I was a baby feeding pro.
Even though it was going well, a year went by and I thought it was time to make the switch to cows milk. Mainly because, you know, people tell you to. People tell you that a cow should start feeding your baby. Saying it out load sounds rather farcical. Why on earth would anybody judge someone for giving his or her tiny person human milk over cows’ milk?
Sorry, for a few years I admit, I was a stupid lady. Just because it’s been normalised in western countries, I like many, just follow the advice from “experts”, “experts” or perfect strangers who know nothing about you or your children. Sounds ridiculous doesn’t it?
This is when all those clever mummies’ who ignored people like me chuckle. Their little (big) ones are perfectly fine and healthy drinking from their beautiful bosoms. They haven’t had to deal with the tummy cramps, the green sticky goo that exploded through nappies every half an hour. The Doctors appointments that only confirmed what we knew in the first place. The endless discussions about how dairy intolerant means that he can’t consume cows milk but can eat eggs as they do not count as dairy.
It’s funny, I wish I could go back in time and breastfeed for longer, even if I expressed, he wouldn’t have had to go through all the nonsense that came with being dairy intolerant. Family members ‘forgetting’ or not looking at ingredients labels meant an entire week of staying at home, double the amount of nappies, quadruple the amount of wipes and thank god for ‘Metanium Nappy Rash Ointment’. This yellow nappy rash cream is a bit of a bastard to get off of clothes, but it’s the only thing that would protect his little bum.
I know, I know, others may have it worse. It’s not life threating, it’s more inconvenient. Now that he’s not in nappies, it’s a case of him being on the loo more often and slight tummy upsets. I know a few adults who put up with this inconvenience just so they can enjoy a Vanilla Latte with extra cream. I really couldn’t be bothered suffering like that; there are so many great tasting alternatives out there.
He is not allergic to dairy, he is intolerant. We’re just lucky that the effects haven’t been that severe. Someone offering him a bag of ‘Cheese Puffs’ could be catastrophic if that wasn’t the case. Milk solids are the devil btw. I am so sympathetic to nut allergy sufferers. I have stopped threatening to throw handfuls of cashew nuts at my sister who swells up just by sitting next to a bag full of nuts. Reactions like that are crazy scary.
Two years on, we’ve mastered it. We know what to do, we know what he can eat; he is old enough to tell people that he can’t have cows milk. Although sometimes he sounds like a condescending gentrified hipster discussing the contents of cows’ milk. It can be quite cringe worthy to say the least, obviously depending on our surroundings.
Both Sainsbury’s and Tesco have the best ‘Free From’ aisles and I’m a coconut milk convert. I’ve trained myself to actually dislike the taste of cows’ milk. I will send back my coffee if they forgot my special request. Imagine, this non-baker actually spent roughly 6 hours baking a dairy free Star Wars birthday cake; his massive smile was worth all the sweat (literal) and stress.
So, again, I’ve learned my lesson. Karma, thank you for dropping some knowledge on this formally small-minded brain of mine.
Breastfeeding mamas, keep doing what you’re doing, don’t let society tell you any different.
A cow is fine it’ll do, but ultimately, breast is best. Especially if you’re raising a little human and not a calf.
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