Sunday, October 31, 2010

holy exhaustion batman...

It would take little, if any, work at all for me to dress as a strung out crack addict for Halloween tonight.

We were doing ok... until.

We've been trying to get in bed around 10.  I'll feed E and then we all go to sleep for a few hours.  She's been getting up every 2 1/2 or 3 hours.  She'll nurse and go back to sleep.  Until last night.  Or was it the night before?

Latching on was a foreign concept to a starving little girl last night.  She wasn't interested.  At. All.  I had no idea what to do.  We had no idea what to do.  Short of putting chocolate on my nipple I was at a loss.  I have plenty of milk (read: soaking her with milk).  I thought we had the latch down.  Guess not.   So I pumped and gave her a bottle.  I didn't want to.  I cried about it.  I cried most of the night actually.  But after she had the bottle she slept for a while then we went through it all again. 

With swollen, bleary eyes I frantically googled this morning and found the number for the local LLL (La Leche League).  I am NOT a breast feeding proponent (I really think it's an individual decision and no one else can tell you how or what is best for you and your family).  Cannon never latched and he got breast milk from a bottle for about 12 weeks until I was tired of being a cow.  He is a perfectly healthy, smart, mostly formula fed baby. 

But this time, I wanted to try again.  More for me than for E.  I wanted to be able to do it.  For some reason it was really important to me this time.  So, imagine being exhausted from a new baby.  Sitting in her nursery in the middle of the night, bawling.  It was not a pretty sight.  Ask Dan. 

After a conversation with the LLL lady who was absolutely nothing short of delightful and pleasant when I called her at 8am on a Sunday, and a few deep breaths we got a latch this morning.  For half an hour.  Thank. God. 

We're going to try and feed her every couple hours today so she doesn't get extra hungry and frustrated before we can latch and hope that helps.  We shall see. 

Could be quite a treat for the trick or treaters. :)

The Best part?  It's a new day.  A cloudy, foggy, exhuasted day but it's a new day.

Oh and please consider this an advice solicitation from any of you super breast feeders... I'm soliciting advice.  :)  You know who you are.


Katie @ Loves of Life said...

Just so you know, I'm almost done my 6th month of breastfeeding Eme exclusively and the SAME thing has happened to me on a few occasions. What I've found is she wouldnt (when younger) latch if she was OVERLY tired and OVERLY hungry. Bad combination for a hungry girl. Getting milk from the boob is totally more work then a bottle. On those few occasions if I had a pumped bottle ready I'd either just give in and give her the bottle--or, I'd just sit there, rocking her, trying to get her calm enough to relax and latch. It would sometimes take 20 plus agonizing minutes (of screaming)...but eventually she would. I'd typically start the process for her (kind of squeeze the milk out, sorry, TMI? ha) that she'd understand its RIGHT.THERE. Plus, it helps her to have to work less to get it coming.'re doing great. Keep at it, lady. You know, until it gets too much. But you should feel good about where you are!

McCulloch Family said...

I nursed both girls for almost 8 months and not one part of it came naturally. It was a LOT of work both times, especially in the beginning. So don't for one second think that it comes easily for any woman. It's hard work and dedication. It's late nights and cracked out days. It's crying for both babe and mom. But you take some breaths and know that next time will be different, if not a little easier.

I agree with the previous comment about the bad combo of hunger & your game plan of feeding BEFORE those things happen is a great idea. I also found that if I were engorged (sorry TMI) the latch was NEAR IMPOSSIBLE. I remember several times I'd have to pump BEFORE offering the bre.ast or anticipating when she'd feed next and pump a little to take the edge off and reduce the engorgement. Just my two cents.

The only other things I can think of when I had a tough go at it were my scent had changed (used lotion and she HATED the new smell), it was something I ate last nursing session that upset her tummy and she didn't want to try the teet again, or the engorgement that I talked about above.

You already know that you're not a failure if this doesn't work you're ahead of the game in that respect. You're giving it a valiant effort and that's really all you can do.

Hang in there, girl. And keep at it. You're still learning and so is she. The longer you practice the easier it gets.


Anonymous said...

First of all, props to you lady. I can't imagine having a toddler running around while going through the process I did with the K-Monster and breastfeeding. It took me almost three months before I knew I was glad I had made the decision to nurse him. I went through so many feelings - excitement, failure, frustration, -then I got mastitis, that was awesome-, he was a leach on me and my life for a while, then, all of a sudden it just worked and was easier then anything else. I LOVED it and still do. Now when I have to give him a bottle, it's annoying for me. :)

You are normal and not alone sister! A lot of whats already been said is so true. I had to let him cry in my lap until he figured it out a couple times, using tricks previously stated. Keelty also went through a phase where he would only nurse from one side for a month and a half. Every baby is different. I remember calling friends for advice and getting completely opposite opinions or advice that had no effect on us.

Keep the faith and we'll be thinking of you. Call any time. It always made me feel better to talk.