Good morning, friends!
Today I wanted to share a little bit about my person experience with breastfeeding. Every new mom has their own story to share, and I think being open and honest can help others see that they aren’t alone in their struggles!
Before Addie was born, one of my biggest concerns was latching. I had heard so many stories of women who had difficulty getting their babies to latch, so I was worried I’d have the same issues.
Fortunately, latching was never an issue for Addie. The lactation consultant helped us the first several times, but by the time we left the hospital, she was latching and sucking like a pro.
Addie quickly returned to her birth weight, which is always a good sign that she’s being properly fed. However like most new moms, I was still always nervous that I wasn’t feeding her enough. Especially because when I pumped after feeding her, I typically got very little milk.
When we went for our 1-month well-check, the pediatrician said that although her weight gain was minimal, she was still progressing. So he wasn’t concerned, and he encouraged me to keep breastfeeding.
So we went another full month with just breastfeeding. I continued to be nervous that I wasn’t giving her enough, but since she was typically content throughout the day, I wasn’t overly worried.
At the 2-month well-check, the pediatrician confirmed my fears when he said that she hadn’t gained enough weight. Although she had gained in length and head size, he was concerned about her weight. So he told me to start supplementing with formula. Specifically, he told me to nurse her like normal and then offer her 3 oz. of formula at each feeding.
I did this method for almost two weeks. I was excited to see that she was gaining weight, but I also started noticing that she wanted to nurse for less and less time. It was at that point that I realized that my supply was dwindling.
My lactation consultant said that Addie was probably starting to get a “lazy suck” because she was used to getting milk much easier from a bottle. She recommended that I pump 3-5 times a day to try to increase my supply.
So that’s what I did. I started nursing only a couple of times a day and pumping 5 times a day, for 20 minutes each time. I’d give Addie some breastmilk bottles and some formula bottles.
Unfortunately, this method did not increase my supply. I continued to produce only about 10 oz. a day, which was about a third of what she was eating each day.
I tried taking the fenugreek supplements, but they made her really gassy. I also tried the lactation cookies (see below) that work for a lot of women, but I didn’t see much change.
And now, I’m waving the white flag.
I have cried a lot of tears over this decision. Just typing this post makes me teary-eyed. As a mom, you want to do everything in your power to provide the best for your child. And according to the “experts,” breastmilk is the best. So it’s a hard pill to swallow when you realize that your body has essential ‘failed’ you.
But there’s so much to be thankful for. I’m thankful that I was able to exclusively nurse Addie for two months, and I was able to give her breastmilk for another month after that. I’m thankful that there’s the option of formula for women who struggle to breastfeed like I did. And ultimately, I’m so thankful to the Lord for my healthy, beautiful little girl. I know that in the end, we’re both going to be just fine … despite things not going quite as planned.
One of the things being a mom has already taught me is that I cannot control everything. But I can find peace in the fact that my God is in control. He has always been faithful, and He will continue to show His faithfulness to my family.
Whew, well in other news …
I know I said that the lactation cookies didn’t work for me, but I know that they’ve helped many other women. So I wanted to share the recipe that I used.
Just click on this link: lactation cookies. I used the recipe called “Major Milk Makin’ Cookies,” created by Kathleen Major.
I followed the recipe exactly, and I ended up with almost 4 dozen cookies! If you don’t want to make them all right away, do what I did: form balls of dough and put them on a cookie sheet that will fit in your freezer. Stick the cookie sheet with the balls of dough in the freezer for several minutes, until the dough starts to harden. Then throw the balls of dough into a Ziplock freezer bag. When you want to bake some cookies, just put a few in the oven and you’re good to go!
The secret to the cookies is in 3 ingredients: oats, flaxseed, and brewer’s yeast. Make sure you buy brewer’s yeast, and not some other kind of yeast!
The cookies actually taste pretty darn good … they’re just a little more dense than regular chocolate chip cookies!
Hope this information helps some of you new moms! And just remember that how or what you feed your baby is not the only indicator of how good of a momma you are!
And finally, the winner of the giveaway!
Random Sequence Generator
Here is your sequence:
Anna brink JULY 18, 2013
I liked the Facebook page!!! love you, Kristen!
Congratulations, Anna! Email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I’ll give you details on how to claim your prize!
Question for ya …
What did everyone do this weekend?
We took Addie to the pool for the first time on Saturday! We only had her out in the sun for 5 minutes because it was so hot, but it was fun seeing her expression (or lack thereof!) when we first put her little toes in the water!
Anyone else want to share their struggles or joys related to nursing?