Thursday, May 31, 2012

Nursing Issues!


For those of you that follow me on FB you know that Zeke had some nursing issues. This is really for documentation purpose, but here's the whole story.

While in the hospital Zeke had lost 10% of his body weight...he went from 7lbs 5.4oz to 6lbs 9oz. That is actually a normal amount of weight loss, but my milk hadn't come in yet and they didn't want him to lose anymore. So we came up with a his next feeding we gave him formula (I hate doing that) and then I pumped while he ate that. Then at his next feeding I nursed him and then he was given the milk that I pumped during his previous feeding and then I pumped again. The idea was that he would nurse and stimulate my breasts, but then he would get the extra that I was pumping as well. Good idea right?

Well....this turn Zeke into an even more laid back chilled baby and actually turned him into a more lazy baby. He wanted his milk and he wanted it now and the bottle gave him that. It got to the point where he wouldn't even latch onto me and would just scream at my breast. Not exactly what a new mommy wants. I was really feeling low and this came right around the time when I started to feel like my hormones were really messed up and I hadn't' taken my anti-depressant since the day he was born....bad combination folks!! I was sitting in bed holding him and sobbing. It was not good! That was Sunday and of course with the holiday weekend the lactation consultants wouldn't be in the office until Tuesday. I was able to talk to two LC's over the phone and through those conversations I was given quite a few ideas to try to see if they helped. After trying a few of them we figured out a combination that worked for us. The biggest help came from my friend Kim....I had called her earlier on Sunday...crying of course...after we got off the phone she started to pray for us and then she remembered this syringe that Micah (her husband) had used when he had some work on his tooth. It has a crooked thin spout at the end and would be perfect to use for breastfeeding. Her and Micah brought dinner over for us that night and she gave Michael the syringe for me to try.

Since Zeke is an instance gratification guy the first thing I had to do when it was time to nurse was prime the pump per se. I watched a video on You Tube...don't you love You Tube...on hand expression. I must say it's quite interesting watching breastfeeding videos of other ladies, but you know you gotta do what you gotta do. After learning how to properly hand express my own milk I started doing that before even bringing Zeke up to nurse. The milk I was able to express would go in the syringe to help entice Zeke to nurse. So when I brought him to the breast I could squirt some milk in his mouth to calm him down and then I would put a little on my breast so he knew that's where it came from. Thankfully on Monday after a day and half of just pumping and feeding him breast milk through a bottle he finally nursed from me directly again. For a breast feeding mama like me I was in heaven. I LOVE to nurse my babies and to hear that sound of him gulping up the goodness that God designed my body to produce for him....pure joy!!!

So that was our ritual starting on Monday. In the beginning he would get too tired to nurse from the second breast so I was still having to pump and then feed him a bit more by bottle, but that was another thing we changed. In the beginning Michael was the one that was giving him his bottles and although it was nice for Michael to get to have this bonding time we came to the decision that Zeke was getting a bit confused about who was supposed to feed him. So for the time being it became solely my job to feed him both by nursing and with the bottle. He needed to understand that food only came from me! By Tuesday afternoon he was nursing regularly from both breasts so I didn't need to pump anymore and feed him extra from a bottle, but I was still having to hand express and use the syringe. Then by Wednesday he was really getting it and I no longer needed to use the syringe. I still have to hand express, but I just do it directly into his mouth when I bring him to the breast.

I still don't feel confident about nursing him outside the home since he is a bit of a high maintenance nurser. He's also so tiny I really need have to have the Boppy and blankets to help support him. Thankfully the one time we've gone out he didn't need to nurse. If you had asked me on Sunday if I thought that he would be nursing this well by Wednesday I would have laughed in your face. It really is astonishing to me and an absolute answer to prayer.


Melody said...

How stressful! Thankfully, I've never had a babe with nursing issues. I can only imagine how incredibly sad and frustrating it would be especially in the midst of adjusting to adding a FOURTH little one to the family : )
So glad he is doing better, and answer to prayer for sure!