The early weaning days

Phoenix’s hunger is relentless. Over the last few weeks he’s seemed rarely satisfied and there have been a lot of tears before bed and nap time. So as a result I’ve had to throw in the towel on the exclusive 6 months breastfeeding and introduce some tummy fillers. I don’t really mind, I’m proud I’ve got this far just breastfeeding and appreciate that from the moment your birth plan goes out the window as soon as you go into labour, you learn to be flexible in all things ‘baby’ rearing 😉

Phoenix is now 19 weeks and I felt he was ready to start a slow introduction to solids. It’s tough knowing weather or not they’re ready and I was a bit nervous about giving him anything other than milk. There’s loads of things I read which can apparently signify if a baby is ready to start on solids – can he hold is head up? Is he over 15lbs? Is he interested when you eat food? Is he draining both breasts? Blah blah blah. Ultimately I just went with the ‘he’s hungry, I need a little help here’ school of thought and so I got started.

Introducing foods to a baby is both exciting and a little scary. After only giving breastmilk, I felt like when I started giving him food it would be tainting his organic little insides! So we started him on baby rice before bed time which I felt really comfortable with as you mix it with milk so it just feels like a chunkier milk. The first time I made it up quite runny as I thought it would be easier for him to swallow but after a few days I actually found it easier to feed with it a bit thicker. He was surprisingly good with the spoon considering it was his first time. Actually if I had to invent a feeding device the complete opposite to a nipple it would probably be a spoon so he did really well. I’d say we had about a 50:50 bib to mouth ratio which for a first attempt I didn’t think was too bad. After just one week he was amazing with the spoon and now he opens his mouth whenever he sees it. I think he’s going to really love food. Although thinking about it, if a child of mine and Ben’s was going to be good at anything, it was going to be eating. I think this video captures how he felt about taking his first steps into the world of food…

As the baby rice went so well I’ve also introduced an additional breakfast of baby cereal as they seemed to be fairly inoffensive ingredients wise. We’re on the Heinz banana one at the moment, which by the way smells sooooo good, just like Angel Delight. I haven’t tried it though as I don’t want to shatter my illusions: anything sugar free can’t be that good.

So to recap, for the couple of weeks I’ve been doing the baby rice before bath time each night using expressed milk followed by a normal feed and baby cereal in the morning about an hour after his first feed of the day. So has it made any difference? Hmmmmm, I’d say yes and no. Overall he seems much more satisfied and there is a noticeable difference at bedtime and naptime; much less crying and fussing (hoorah!) But, and I’d say it’s pretty big but, we still have the 3am feeds and he still feeds throughout the day approx every 2-2.5 hours. I guess I’m just going to have to sit tight for a little while yet until he gets brave enough to go right through. There have been a few nights where he has been able to go back to sleep just with just the dummy, but most of the time he wants a little top up. He always go straight back to sleep though afterwards so it’s not too bad.

I took him to get weighed today as I got really paranoid that I was over feeding him and ‘change for life’ leaflets would start being shoved through my letter box, but he’s just under the line so that’s good to know we’re on schedule. I’ll carry on like this for another week or so and then I’m bringing out the big guns…the sweet potato; try not to sleep with one of those inside you! (NB: I will not actually feed him a whole sweet potato)

If anyone has any top weaning tips please add to the comments below for all to steal!

Ems x

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7 thoughts on “The early weaning days

  1. Vicky says:

    Hiya, Phoenix birthday twin Charlie has also just started the big feed!! He too is enjoying banana porridge and as I’m going to try with baby lead weaning I have started giving him small bits of veg from our evening meal! To be honest he just sucks the veg and then spits it out but apparently that is all part of the learning!! He weighs over 16ibs so I think he’s ready for it now!! Good luck xxx

  2. Hannah says:

    My daughter started having solids at 15 weeks – I completely went against the guidelines, but then I believe that every child is different and as I wanted to continue to breast feed her, the only option was to give her a bit of solid food. I completely bypassed baby rice cuz she hated it (she knows whats good for her!) and started her on rice pudding and custard with fruit puree in it. She loved it and still devours every food type I give to her.

    Try not to worry about what other people think and what books and the Internet say. I’ve fallen out with my sister in law about it and it’s just not worth it. You know your child more than anyone else does, and if you think he is ready for something before the WHO or whoever else say so, then go for it.

    x

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  4. Honest Mum says:

    I breastfed exclusively for 6 months and boy did my baby want to eat, he had 3 courses on the first day I weaned him. Friends of mine said their boys in comparison to their girls wanted to eat lots more. My baby O literally ate rice, stewed fruit and yoghurt in the first week!

  5. Kirsty says:

    I had the same issues – needing a second bottle at bedtime, waking 2-3 times overnight. I started E on solids a week ago and he hates them. The faces he pulls!! So far we’ve tried baby rice & apple. Today is carrot. He must be keeping some down though as he now only needs 1 bottle at bedtime and 1 overnight feed. I just wish I could find something more enjoyable for him 😦

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