Got Milk?

Wow, I can totally see why so many new mothers give up on breastfeeding. It's so hard!! Which is weird, because you would think it would just be very natural and come so easily....the baby should instinctively know what to do, you should instinctively know what to do...but oh doesn't happen that way.

I am over the first week of "ow, I'm so freakin' sore", but it was so frustrating because Eva wanted to feed ALLLLLL the time. It took her an hour and a half, and 30 minutes later she wanted to feed again. My health nurse told me not to let her do that, so after 40 min to an hour I took her off, and she was grumpy and screaming in my face for an hour. After a week of this, my nurse told me she wasn't gaining enough weight and she was screaming because she was still hungry, so I should let her feed as long as she back to an hour and a half of nursing. Seriously! This is ridiculous. I was getting to the point where I was crying all the time, because all I was doing was sitting in the same freakin' rocking chair with my boobs hanging out. Eva was rarely ever happy, and wasn't even sleeping, so her and I were both exhausted.

FINALLY, yesterday I got some relief! I made an appointment to see a lactation consultant (this business of breastfeeding is so hard, there is an actual nurse that specializes in it!) We discovered Eva is a lazy sucker, and because breast milk comes in with supply and demand, my breast milk wasn't coming in like its supposed to. Now I have all these devices to help my milk come in, including an electric breast pump that makes me feel slightly like a cow being milked. But its great because my baby sleeps now! And she's happy!! I've never seen her so happy and content. And I'm happy, because I'm getting sleep!! I feel human again....


Mrs. Querido said...

Breastfeeding your first one is soo much harder than women make it look! I had three months of agony with Mr. Dramatic. But, then I discovered burn patches! Go to your first aid part of the pharmacy and locate the burn patches (down here the brand name is Second Skin). Put them in the fridge for a little bit and then apply to the sore areas of your breasts. They work like wonders! It helped me heal up from the cracking and bleeding. I was able to continue breastfeeding him until 13 months when he weaned himself.
You have a second one to try out breastfeeding on...give it another go! Here are some tips from a woman who has nursed all of her children and is currently still nursing her youngest:
1) Don't supplement unless you absolutely have to. As you stated, milk flow is based on supply and demand. If your baby doesn't demand much of your body because she is getting fed elsewhere, you won't have enough milk.
2) Trust your instincts. Doctors, nurses and lactation nurses can only tell you what they know medically. They cannot tell you what is best for YOUR child, because they don't know your child like you do. Follow your mother's heart and do what you think is best for baby.
3) Only nurse 10-15 minutes on each side. I made the mistake of nursing for an hour the first day and it was sooooo painful.
4)The pacifier is your friend. When I first started out, I didn't want my precious babe to have a pacifier. I was going to be his pacifier. HAH! If you want to sleep without having to whip out a side each time, USE A PACIFIER :)
5) You need a good breastfeeding support system. My husband and my mom both encouraged me even when I was ready to give up because it was such agony. Without them, I wouldn't have gone on. Cheerleaders are sometimes necessary to boost new-mom morale.
6)You can read all the books you want on the subject, but sometimes too much information is just TOO MUCH. Hold your baby whichever way works for both of you. I never could get used to the football!
7)It will get easier, I promise! Don't give CAN do it!

All of the above aside, you have to do what works for you. If you can't breastfeed, don't feel guilty. You don't have to live up to some ideal of motherhood...just be yourself :) That is all your baby needs you to be...mommy.

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