Boob Aptitude

Who knew something so simple would be so difficult? As I mentioned previously, I struggled with breastfeeding in the beginning. Because of my birth trauma and/or the surgery that followed, I have a low supply. And my baby has a bad latch. She only grabs the nipple, instead of the area around it. I tried to fix it in the beginning. I’d take it out and try to get her to open wider,  but I eventually just let it go. I was tired, and she was frustrated. Milk still comes out, just not as much as it could. Of course, a bad latch usually means nipple pain. I had a couple instances of that – blisters on the areolas. (Good morning! Here’s some TMI for you!) But I just put her in a different position until it healed up. I just don’t have the energy to correct it. I’ve watched breastfeeding videos online, and I know we don’t do it right. But it is what it is. Milk comes out, and she is swallowing, so I’ll take what I can get. I highly recommend new moms to get it right in the beginning though, so you don’t have to go through this. I’m just not a good student, I guess.

I saw a lactation consultant for a few weeks, trying desperately to increase my milk supply, so we wouldn’t have to continue with formula. I take Fenugreek, Mother’s Milk and Domperidone, which are expensive. I don’t think my supply has  increased at all, but I’m afraid to stop taking them in case I lose what I do have. So, I’ve had to accept it. We’re a formula family who supplements with breastmilk. I will do my best, and there are worse things to worry about.

I know when I go back to work in a month that I’ll probably have to stop breastfeeding. I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep it up once I have to pump at work. I’m barely able to pump two times a day as it is now. And at work, I’ll have to use the gym for pumping and just hope that no one walks in. And as someone who found it difficult to find time to grab lunch, what are the chances I’d find time for this?

I know I’m going to miss it. I never understood before what made breastfeeding so amazing. Mothers always talk about it like it’s the greatest thing in the world. And now I get it. Maybe it’s the hormones, or maybe it’s the bonding. I feel amazing when I’m feeding her. It’s incredible! I’m sad that every mother doesn’t get to experience this.

My emotions and mood swings have mostly settled down, though I still have occassional breakdowns. Recently, I had an intense one. I just felt so overwhelmed. Tired and in a panic about going back to work on October 1st. How on earth will I be able to be away from her for 45+ hours a week? Every minute with her is so precious. I just don’t know if my heart can handle it. Even for a talk show host. DH talked me off the ledge again. I know he’s worried about me. I promised him I don’t have PPD. I’m just worried. I worry a lot more now. Worried she’s not eating enough, not growing enough, not sleeping enough. We saw our pediatrician on Monday and she’s doing fine. She’s up to 11 pounds, 1.5 ounces, which means she gained an ounce a day this past month, which is right on target. Yay! Such relief. We weren’t supposed to see the doc again until she’s 4 months, but I wanted an appointment at 3 months just so we can have her weighed and measured again. Yup, I’m going to be that mom.

I’m super grateful that I’ve had this time with little C. I know a lot of moms don’t get three months to get to know their baby and snuggle them whenever they want. I’m going to shake off the downer moods and try to just enjoy her, my beautiful, beautiful daughter.

I’m writing to her. I want her to know some things about what she’s like and how much she’s loved. Growing up, I would’ve treasured the assurance that I was loved. Here’s a little snippet:

Dear C,

Your father and I love you so much. I never knew parenthood would feel like this. Like the world is going to turn out OK afterall. Like I now wear my heart on the outside of my body. Like we were blessed with the most beautiful and sweet baby ever born. I don’t know how we got so lucky, but we will be grateful for you every day and treasure you every minute. You won’t ever doubt how much we adore you. Please keep that in mind when you want to run away at 7 and get that facial piercing at 15.


                                                                                                Your mommy

2 thoughts on “Boob Aptitude

  1. Going back to work is hard at first, but as with most parenthood related stuff, it gets easier as you do it day after day. There will be a moment when you think to yourself, “why did I have a child just so they could be raised by daycare/a nanny (basically someone who is not you)!!!”, but this is an illusion brought on by the anxiety of being away from your child for 45+ hours a week. It gets better, you gain perspective and you make the time you are together time of love and family.

    You are a wonderful mother, enjoy your daughter and know that the worry too, while it will not go away will lessen. Charlotte is indeed a beautiful, sweet baby who is blessed to have such caring parents.

    1. Yeah, I have that moment every day. Someone else is going to raise my child. It makes me so sad. But I know I’ll get over it. It’s the price we pay for living here and having the life we have. We’ll do the best we can and hopefully she won’t resent us someday.

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