There is no dignity in motherhood

baby led weaning

Becoming a mom is a beautiful experience. I love my little girl, and most days I enjoy being a mom. It’s amazing the amount of love I feel for my little one, how deeply I feel for her, how profound the experience has been. Despite some ups and downs, I wouldn’t change it for anything. But that doesn’t mean it’s always pretty.

As I’ve mentioned, Harley is starting solids. That might be a bit of an overstatement, though. She doesn’t really eat yet. I actually don’t think she’s quite ready yet, so it’s more about the textures and experiences than it is about nutrition. That’s why I’m so glad that I’m going the baby-led weaning route – she gets to set the pace and we minimize the chance of making meal times traumatic for her or turning her into a picky eater in the future. Usually, I just offer her a taste of whatever I’m having, but today I thought I’d make her something just for her… but that doesn’t mean it was elegant to do so.

You see, much of what I’ve read is that it can be best to mix whatever food with breastmilk. It then tastes more like what she’s used to and she might find it more enticing. One of the recipes I saw for baby-led weaning was oats. The interesting thing was to take oatmeal and microwave it for 2 minutes so that it becomes cooked but pretty dried out into a patty – you can then cut and cool it and babies can easily pick it up and eat it. At least, that’s the theory.

In the hopes of making it taste like delicious baby oatmeal cake, I figured that instead of using water or milk to make the oats, I’d use breastmilk. So there I was this morning, leaning over a bowl of oats, milking myself. It wasn’t pretty or elegant or something I’d ever imagined I’d be doing, but I managed. Of course, as luck would have it, Harley was completely disinterested in the food. Almost none of it made it into her mouth, and when she did eventually swallow a small amount, she ended up puking it all up anyway. At least the texture play was good for her, though – she seemed to enjoy squishing it in her hands and throwing it around a bit.

Baby-led weaning isn’t for those who need to get their kids on solids in a hurry, or for those who struggle with a mess, but it is pretty fun to watch Harley with the food, even if it did sort of feel like a waste after all that effort.

Motherhood is so weird – how can something so beautiful be combined with wiping dirty butts, cleaning up puke and milking oneself? Absolutely bizarre.

Oh, and please let me know what were your little one’s first foods. I’m curious about what else to try – Harley doesn’t seem too intrigued by the oats at the moment, or butternut. So far, the only thing she ate and liked was tapenade and gem squash.


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