The Dreaded "S" Word  

Friday, December 5, 2008

December 2008: 0 months old

This week has been fantastic. All three of us had a pretty rough time at the hospital, but now that we are home things have been running much smoother and are way less stressful. Before giving birth to Bailey I had made the decision that I wanted to breast feed her. If you have discussed this with me it may have seemed surfacely that I was undecided about it, but in reality it was something I really wanted to be able to do I just lacked confidence in my ability to actually do it. I have heard a lot of things about how painful it can be at first and so honestly it scared me, but I have also heard about all the nutritional value it provides the baby that formula can't do. So to protect myself from being let down I typically under estimate my ability to do things, silly I know but doesn't is feel better to surprise yourself than to let yourself down? Candi and a few of my friends have been talking to me about it a great deal, telling me how much of a connection you get to your baby through breast feeding and I think they are right. Bailey did pretty well with latching right from the beginning. It wasn't exactly easy, but I think it could have been harder at the same time kwim? Having a c-section though did make the breast milk take a little longer than if I had had her vaginally. By night three Bailey had become overly hungry and irritable from lack of sleep. Her nurse from the nursery had come in around 5 am to take her for her vitals and to be checked out by the pediatrician (routine every morning). She had been fussing all night and would only sleep if she was cuddled up next to me in bed. By this point I was on empty as far as sleep went and was looking forward to the two hours I was about to get. Unfortunately when they had brought her back to me I found her with a pacifier in her mouth and she was going to town on it. The nurse tried to tell me that most babies can use pacifiers and breast feed, but not my baby that's for sure. She was supposed to eat at 7 am and by 11 she still hadn't latched. Finally a lactating specialist came in and worked with us for a whole hour and we finally got a successful latch. Bailey had passed out from being worked up for so long so I felt it was safe to call the nursery to take her for an hour so that I could shower and eat some lunch before the next feeding. John was at work because it was black Friday, and I didn't feel comfortable leaving her in the room unattended with as many people that feel the need to walk into your room at the hospital that I don't know. I had thrown the pacifier away so I didn't think to tell the nurse not to give her one. One hour later she wheeled Bailey back in my room with another pacifier shoved in her mouth. I wanted to strangle her. So once again I fought with Bailey all afternoon to get her to latch with another lactating specialist assisting. This time the baby was done with me. We were able to persuade her back on with a guard but it wasn't easy. That night when she was weighed she had dropped in weight significantly. The on call pediatrician came in and lectured me about how I was making both Bailey and myself miserable, and I need to think about what is right for the baby. He had me in tears. I started to doubt myself, was I being selfish? I thought I was trying to do what is best for the baby and now I am being told that I am a bad mommy already. The lack of sleep, hormones and frustration where more than I could handle. My baby had been crying now for almost 24 hours, and meal time was more than I could handle and I was doing this alone because John had been working. Thank God for Candi and the help of John. Candi swooped in to my rescue and gave me the support I needed. Candi showed me how I could supplement without actually giving Bailey a bottle, which was not something that the on call Pediatrician offered up as advice. I requested to be released because the hospital was more than I could handle. A lactating specialist came in to see me before I left to offer some additional support. These ladies where a lot more helpful than the nursery nurses. They showed me many tricks to help John and I teach Bailey how to latch. But honestly in the end I would have given up and would have been sad about it, if it wasn't for Candi's support. The nurses and the doctor had discouraged me completely and made me feel guilty for trying to breast feed instead of just switching her to bottle. We were released on a Saturday, and set up an appointment with a new Pediatrician on Tuesday. The breast feeding was a struggle all the way up until Monday afternoon, and then something clicked with Bailey. She became a little champ at it. When she weighed in on Tuesday she had only gained back an ounce upon leaving the hospital, and since she had lost a little over a pound the Doc was a little worried. I explained the situation to him so he recommended I bring her back Friday to be weighed in again to make sure that she is getting the nutrition she needs. We had no problem with this, because of course we are concerned about her more than anyone and want what is best for her. If that means supplement then that is what we will do. At this point my biggest issue is no longer getting her to latch, it's waking her up. Once she had a full belly all she wants to do is sleep. John and I have to apply the torcher method every two to three hours to make sure she eats enough. We undress her completely, put cold wet wash clothes on her, apply lotion, tickle and change diapers just to wake her enough to eat, and then do it all over again when I switch sides. It's not surprising that she likes her sleep so much, John and I are both sleepy heads. Anyway I am happy to report that she gained 10 oz back in three days. She has become a good little eater. We no longer have to worry about supplementing her, and in fact the Dr. was so impressed that he went ahead and did her two week check up so that we won't have to come back until her two month check up! Meal time is no longer an issue, and has become enjoyable for us both. GO BAILEY, and Thanks Sis we couldn't have done it with out ya!!

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2 comments: to “ The Dreaded "S" Word

  • jpeck
    December 6, 2008 at 7:54 AM  

    Man I hate that! I had similar experiences with BOTH of my kids at the hospital (they had low blood sugar so we had to supplement for a while)...even down to a nursery nurse making me feel bad about trying to breast feed! They don't seem to be very supportive- I tried to deal just with the lactation nurses with Jack.
    I'm so glad you stuck it out and had Candi's help!! It's definitely worth the initial struggle!

  • alyak23
    December 6, 2008 at 11:40 AM  

    Yeah she's the best big sister ever :o) She has been so great with EVERYTHING! The nurses and the Dr. were a bit overwhelming for me, so it was quite a relief to have someone so supportive.

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