Friday, August 6, 2010

ode to breastfeeding

Breastfeeding has lots of e's. e's but not ease. You would think I would be the breast feeding pro by now. I have had five children. the nurses assumed I was an experienced mother. well I am. just not in breastfeeding. no m & m's here just lots of ill at ease. when I was pregnant with my fifth child, I had decided. committed. was excited to at long last be a successful nurser. I didn't buy one bottle. I was given a very elegant nursing cover up at my baby shower. I had the books. I had nursing bras. I was ready.

two years prior to my pregnancy with my fifth child, I had just delivered twins. prior to my delivery of twins I had had two natural births. no medication. just arrived at the hospital 30 min before the birth of my first and 2 hours before the birth of my second. delivery of my babies was never a problem. quick labors and big babies. then the twins came a long.

I grow big babies. two at a time was too much for my body. I kept going into preterm labor. they gave me a steroid shot to help their lungs in anticipation of an early arrival. I was put on bedrest. I was given shots to stop labor twice at 29 weeks. after almost a week of hospitalization and attempts at stopping labor, the twins were delivered as an emergency c section at 33 weeks. they required oxygen and NICU admittance. our daughter required several weeks stay due to persistent apnea.

when I found out I was pregnant again only 1 year and 5 months after the traumatic experience of their pregnancy and delivery, I was so concerned this would all happen again.

Anytime I felt practice contractions I was afraid I would go into pre term labor again. Due to the emergency c section, by doctor said I could try a VBAC if I wanted to but it would require over an hour drive to the hospital that would do it. Since my labors are notoriously quick, I thought that probably wouldn't be a good idea. So I was scheduled for a c section again. When the time came, it did not go well. I was scheduled on a Friday at 39 weeks. I went into labor that Thursday. just 12 hours prior to my scheduled appointment.

I had to work with a doctor on call. I reacted to the spinal they gave me and ended up really sick to my stomach and my temperature dropped. I had to stay in recovery for hours after the birth. and now we are back up to my desire to breastfeed.

They asked me if I wanted to nurse his first feeding. I couldn't. I was so sick still that I couldn't move or I got dizzy and threw up. I couldn't stop shaking. so my husband gave our new baby his first bottle feeding.

Several hours later, I started to feel better and began my journey of trying to successfully feed my new baby. He latched on right away! My milk came in just two days later! The lactation consultants offered help but I declined! Things were going SO well.

Prior to my twins, I had tried to nurse my second child, but the doctor was concerned that she wasn't gaining weight. I eventually gave up nursing for formula with her.

This time, I wanted to conquer breastfeeding. Things went really well while my husband was home and he was able to watch our two year old twins and I was able to recuperate from the c section and nurse. Then I went to the baby's check up. He was not gaining weight. I was devastated. I could not believe it. Everything was going right this time and yet he wasn't gaining weight. The doctor suggested supplementing with formula.

I continued to nurse and then ended with a bottle of formula. This seemed to satisfy him and his weight didn't drop. But he still wasn't thriving in the doctor's opinion. Opinion. see my last blog.

I persevered supplementing. Then nursing became painful. really painful. I stopped nursing for a few feedings and went to a lactation consultant. She agreed something was wrong. I was treated for thrush. I decided to pump while I healed. Then my husband went back to work. I had two two year olds running circles around me, while I tried to pump. The last time I tried to nurse, I tried and tried to get him to latch on correctly again and finally gave him the bottle and he guzzled it down.

I became depressed and discouraged. THIS was supposed to be my successful nursing child. It was falling apart quickly. I loved nursing for the first 3 weeks and now it was becoming so stressful. I didn't have help with the twins and I couldn't get the rest that I needed and the time to figure out nursing again after healing. I went back to a lactation consultant one more time in a last ditch attempt and decided something had to go. I finally relinquished my dream to formula again.

As a side note, we then had to adjust his formula because on pure formula, he was suddenly throwing it up. Which he had never done breast feeding. We switched him to no spit up formula and he held it okay and began to thrive.

so here is my story for national breast feeding week. I desperately wanted to be successful and look forward to trying one more time if we have another child. But some of us have to resort to formula and sometimes that is okay too.

I think I will console myself with m & m' s.

Mothering magazine

Mothering magazine has a blog site: M...and....m. enjoy!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


opinions. no m & m' s in opinions. In my opinion, people with lots of opinions, have way to much free time on their hands. People with concrete opinions and lots of them think that they have single handedly figured life out for us. thank you!

but are these gurus that we climb up large mountains to find in caves dispelling the meaning of life on us? no. these are the people that we bump into at the grocery store or see at family reunions or meet at church or run across on facebook. These are the people that have decided which detergent we are to use, which restaurants we should eat at, which discipline methods we should use, which hairstyle is most flattering on us, and definitely how much we should weigh. I'm sorry. Did I ask?

These people seem to want to convert the rest of the world to match their lifestyle so that they can live in their perfect utopia with all of their little mini mes and never have conflict or ignorant people to live with ever again. As far as I recall, at some point, Dorothy returns to Kansas. and wiser. for people weren't as she thought they were and she realized that things weren't so bad as she had thought originally.

so what to do with these anti m & m people? will they eventually self destruct as Hitler did? He had lots of opinions. when push came to shove, he crumbled. what happens to these people when they can't convert you? They get angry. why are we so stubborn. they are just trying to help us. why can't we just see what is best for us? when we look close at these people, I think we find lives that we don't agree with. we form our own opinions. but we keep them to ourselves unless they decide to hike up the mountain for some very solicited advice. or wisdom. which ever. just always carry a bagful of m & m's because they probably could use one the most.