Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Nursing update

This is an email I wrote to a friend today....sorry I don't have time to write a real post, but it has some updates from my last post that I wanted to share. Thank you SO much for all of your encouragement and suggestions!!

Thanks so much for your email!! It's amazing how emotional breast feeding can be, but I feel like other moms are the only ones who understand. My husband and his parents try to be supportive but to them it's just not a big deal - who cares if we end up using formula? And, honestly, I don't love breast feeding and I am not opposed to formula in theory, but suddenly being faced with it made me feel like I was failing my boy! So thanks for understanding.

Yes, James had a short frenulum, too, but we did get that clipped when he was about two weeks old. However, before the clipping he needed the n.ipple shield to nurse, and after he got it clipped he got frustrated if I tried not to use it so we kept using it. I read things about the nipple shield potentially reducing milk supply because the nipple isn't as stimulated AND it can reduce milk flow to the baby, but I talked to a lactation consultant who said that is outdated based on old n.ipple shields, but the current ones are fine. So we kept using it. However, in the midst of all of this I tried not using it again and he suddenly seems to prefer to nurse without it! Hooray! And I can't help but think that it does feel like my nipple is being stimulated more and maybe that was part of the problem?! Also, I took your advice and called a lactation consultant on Monday night and she has been an amazing support. All of my friends have used her and she does it as a community service for FREE! She has been coaching me over the phone (so she hasn't observed the latch, but I think/ hope it's fine - but she will come to my house if we need it), and had me start feeding him every three hours around the clock (oy, back to the super early days), pumping after every session (except the middle of the night), and feeding him and extra 1-2 ounces of what I pump for the afternoon/ evening sessions when my supply is the lowest. I feel like it is helping - his hasn't cried while eating much today! She has me call to check in everyday to tell her how the nurising sessions are going which just feels like such a support. She said if he's not 10 lbs. at his doctor's appointment tomorrow she wants me to supplement with formula, but she will coach me to do it in a way that we can wean off of it once she gets my milk supply up. I feel SO much more hopeful and haven't cried for the last two days. More importantly, James has been happier and I hope he is gaining weight!

Thank you for your prayers! I feel like we are on the "up," although I confess with how difficult these last few weeks have been it is difficult to not fear another "down" spell is right around the corner. I am trying to trust the Lord with each day and take it one day at a time.


Amanda said...

I'm glad that things are going better! A good LC can make such a difference. I'm glad that you are finding your confidence.

E said...

wonderful! I a LC that was amazing and that made all the different. We use a sheild for about 10 weeks bc of a lazy latch. you are doing great!!! Keep up the good work!!! his immune system will thank you!

Daniele said...

I'm so glad you decided to contact an LC. I think the key to staying sane through mothering is really using your resources-friends, professionals, family and, of course, the Lord- who all support you in raising James the way you want. Keep up the good work!

The Swann's said...

Oh I've just gotten a chance to catch up! I can't believe how much baby James has changed over the last couple of weeks! Such a handsome little guy!!! It looks like his eyes will stay blue since they are so blue! Do yall have blue eyes?

Nursing is difficult in the beginning! I would recommend lots of skin to skin and letting him suckle as much as possible! Throw out the pacifier {if you even use one!} and be his pacifier! Also the fenegreek has been known to cause gas in babies. You could try Brewer's Yeast {delicious on popcorn!} and make some "lactation cookies" which are also delicious in lieu of Fenegreek for a break to see if you notice any difference in James?

Do put James in a carrier and take a walk to get some vital vitamin D! You and him would greatly benefit from it! And I would put up the pump as too many women get more stressed by watching the output or lack there of and just let James do what he was born to do. Supply and demand.

you're doing FANTASTIC!!!!! Such an amazing woman and mom to follow your instincts and put up a worthy fight! It will pay off!

Still nursing, 21+ months later so you if you want to talk please feel free to e-mail any time! Hugs mama!!

Sarah B said...

Glad to hear things are looking up for you two.

Jessica R said...

Thinking about you - did he gain the weight? Nursing is extremely tough, so be sure to give yourself plenty of grace. Just because every second person in the world has the equipment does NOT mean it's easy or second nature! It hurts, it's hard, we wonder if they're getting enough. All totally normal. You're doing great! :) xoxo