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Thread: Exhausted and very frustrated

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    Thank you ladies. I'm not trying to get defensive or snap at anyone. I know y'all are trying to do what I asked- help. So it's appreciated I am ultimately wanting her to exclusively feed from breast with the exception of the two mandated formula supplements she has to eat a day. I appreciate the referral to other momma's who have been there before. Housework will take a break. And as for school work, I was temporarily stopped due to the surgery but I have to finish my class as I'm 3 weeks away from the end of the course work. I would delay it further but I used the navy's tuition assistance and I must pay for the class if I don't finish it. My family is all in Texas and closest relative is an older 70 y/o aunt in San Francisco area , so no help there lol. We active duty only get 6 weeks post partum and that's because I was given an extra "free" week due to our situation. I'm not trying to sound like a nut case, it's just like I mentioned earlier, rough start. Anyway, time to go pump. Thank you for sharing!

  2. #12
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,117

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    Thanks for giving us a more complete picture of what is going on. You definitely had a rough start! But a lot of what you've experienced is normal, given the situation you were in, Not seeing milk for 5-6 days postpartum after a c-section is pretty common, particularly when you have a baby who is unable to nurse (or is nursing, but not well), and even more so if you are unable to pump due to medications or after effects of surgery. The pre-e could also be to blame; I have read anecdotal reports of magnesium sulfate (which I assume you were given) being responsible for delayed milk production.

    Will your baby nurse without the shield? If so, that's GOOD: baby + bare breast usually results in better milk transfer and better supply than baby + shield + breast. If she won't nurse at all, just keep doing lots of skin-to-skin contact and try to bottle-feed her in a breastfeeding-supportive way (cradled close to your bare chest, using a slow-flow nipple, pausing the feeding frequently, switching sides halfway through, etc.).

    Aside from your difficulties with nursing the baby, it sounds like pumping hasn't given you a huge yield, and there could good reasons for that. Things to think about:
    - your pump- anything less than a hospital-grade rental probably isn't enough, though a Medela PISA would be a good runner-up
    - pump frequency- in order to bring in a good supply, most moms need to pump about as many times per day as an average newborn eats, which is usually about 10-12 times per day
    - your shields- properly fitted shields will ensure maximum stimulation from the pump
    - your contraception choices- I assume that you're not using anything, because your DH is deployed, but if you happen to be using hormonal contraception that could be putting a damper on supply
    - your general health- certain conditions like thyroid problems and PCOS can cause issues with supply, so if you have a family or personal history with those conditions, see your doc
    - herbs- fenugreek, blessed thistle, and ordinary oatmeal might give you a small increase in supply
    - drugs- when all else fails, Reglan and Domperidone are Rx antinausea drugs which can increase serum Prolactin (the milk-making hormone) and thereby increase supply. They have additional side-effects and are not for all moms, so discuss them with your health-care provider before taking either one.

    ETA: call your family in TX. If they are the type of people who CAN offer you the help you need, now is the time to call them in.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,594

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    Sorry for all the issues momma! But you have given your dear baby a wonderful start in life by providing you milk for her, no matter how much. It is easy to feel as if we have somehow failed as moms. Too easy! I have been a mom for almost 10 years and have moments of feelings of failure every single day of that time. I still regularly have a moment (or longer) of feeling defensive or concerned if I think another mom is somehow dissaproving of my parenting or my choices or whatever. I can say that in almost every case that I have seen over about 2 years on the forums regularly, I have seen that the moms here really do want to help other moms get to whatever their goals are.

    OK, so, Sorry if you have covered this-is baby able to nurse effectively at this point? Without pain to you? If not, is anyone working with you on that particular issue? How often does baby nurse?

    The way I understand it, pumping 10 times a day or more is suggested when a baby nurses very poorly or can not nurse at all. Otherwise you can do a combo (nurse more and pump less) when trying to up compromised production. IS that different than what your LC said? In either case, you can pump in any pattern you like, as long as there is no really long period between a session of either pumping or nursing. Babies don;t nurse on a regular pattern at this age, so pumping need not be done that way either. It need not be every such and such hours as long as it is frequent enough to get 10 sessions in 24 hour day. Pump as it works for you.

    I have a few suggestions, take or leave as you like

    1)Is there is any way to not return to work April first? At least not full time? I get it it is the military (I married into an Army family) but I also know there is wriggle room sometimes even so. I think you can make a very strong case that denying your baby as much of your breaastmilk as she can possibly get is potentially health compromising. And going back to work when there are issues this extreme will almost certainly compromise your ability to do that to some degree. When a mom is trying to get baby back to the breast and trying to up production, working full time makes it very hard. Even a week or two longer could help. This may not apply if you are military but what about the California family leave (if you are in CA-you mentoned Aunt in SF)http://paidfamilyleave.org/

    2) Bring your Symphony to work. Yes it is heavy and bigger. But it is still portable. There is a carrying case with a strap. google it.

    3)Work smart-jettison things that are not working for you. For example, over hydration.
    Newer studies show a breastfeeding mother must be properly hydrated, not overhydrated to make adequate milk. Dehydration impedes milk production but being overly hydrated does not help and of couse can cause health issues in general. Yes nursing mothers drink more water and are more thirsty -and they should drink to thirst.

    4) Consider a lactation aid (sns, lactaid) for supplementing

    When you or others give bottles, use paced bottle feeding. http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...astfedbaby.pdf

    Good resources for accurate, evidence based information specifically on low production issues: The book Making More Milk and www.Kellymom.com (Very good low production articles) and www.lowmilksupply.com
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; March 20th, 2013 at 04:22 PM. Reason: forgot stuff including baby's gender! Sorry

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    California
    Posts
    418

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    I think others have given good advice. I'm sorry you have gotten off to such a rough start with the emergency c-section, preemie, etc. Given all that, I think the fact that you are still hanging in there, still TRYING to give your baby breastmilk, is very commendable. I know you only have 10 days before you have to go back to work, but I think it's possible to make significant progress with your pumping and supply even in that short time. You have to be dedicated to doing it, it won't be easy, because you have to pump 10-12 times per 24 hours if you want to increase supply. There are also ways to make pumping more effective; check out this page from Stanford that is designed for mothers of preemies to help them pump more milk:

    http://newborns.stanford.edu/Breastf...roduction.html

    Basically, you want to get as much breast stimulation and as much milk removal as humanly possible, to increase your supply.
    Also, if you have never pumped more than 20ml per breast despite pumping every 2 hours, I would wonder if perhaps there is a medical problem getting in the way of milk production...for example, a retained placenta fragment can keep you from producing a full milk supply, as can thyroid problems. Maybe it's time for an evaluation from your OB/GYN? I don't know, just brainstorming and trying to help. Best of luck, and congrats on sticking with it this far. I hope you get to where you want to be!!
    First-time mama to Joshua, 10/29/11. 29 months and going strong! for 14 months; now finished with pump weaning!

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    lllmeg, there's always room to ask for extra time off, or at the least, work half days....something I'm going to attempt. If all else fails, I shouldn't be denied "leave" (days taken out of my accrued days). Taking the symphony is actually something I pondered, which looks like something I'm about to do. She has not been successful at latching on much less eating from BF. And Joshua's mommy, medical issue is sadly something that hasn't left my mind after other posts in other websites-an issue that has been raised. I did receive magnesium for 4 days, so not sure if that might have something to do with it. I know you ladies are trying to help, again, it's very much appreciated. We'll see what the future has in store for us...I have my OB/GYN checkup on the 25th so I'm headed in with a ton of questions!

  6. #16
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,117

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    Sorry we haven't been able to produce a clear-cut answer to your issues, mama. I know this has to be extremely frustrating!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,465

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    Right here Kim.

    Way too lazy for formula

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    4,894

    Default Re: Exhausted and very frustrated

    Hi Mandy! I've been brought in because I had a similar experience when my daughter was born 7 years ago. She was born at 33 weeks, after 2 weeks of magnesium, severe bleeding, 3 blood transfusions, an amnio and the threat of a hysterectomy via emergency csection. I was not awake for the birth and didn't even lay eyes on my baby for 24 hours and didn't hold her in my arms for 48 hours. She was hospitalized for 28 tumultuous days, where she did not latch a single time. She was on entirely breastmilk by day 3. I completely understand your rough start. You have gotten some fabulous advice and I don't need to reiterate that. What I can give you is BTDT advice and some words that were given to me by my pediatrician who had a preemie and a lactation certification. Feel free to continue to try to latch, but don't expect results until she is "born". Before the due date, it's all just about catching up. And man I can cry now thinking about how right she was. My daughter didn't even latch until her due date. Then it took another week before she actually nursed at all. A month before I could toss the bottles and 3 more months before we got it all to perfect. She went on to nurse until she was 18 months old and is now a healthy 7 year old.

    The message that you should be getting from me is all you need is time and patience. You are already worlds ahead of the place I was in at that point. Your baby is growing and latching. I found the milk expectations outrageous for my little bean. Don't get me wrong, my milk output was phenomenal - and I only used a PIS - but she wasn't eating more than 20ml in a feeding. And those were her hearty meals. I will say that from the second I got that pump on the second day there was nothing that was going to keep me from it. I excused myself twice during my baby shower to pump. Twice. In 3 hours. I set my alarm to wake at night even when she was still in the hospital and people thought I was crazy. I was so incredibly sick too. But it was the least I could do for my baby, who I felt like I failed by not being able to hold her in. Once home, all I did was try to nurse, bottle feed, pump, wash bottles, change diapers, try to nurse, bottle feed, etc. I did nothing else. My husband had started a new job the day I was hospitalized, so he couldn't take time. I ended up taking 5 months from work even though I was a consultant and didn't get a single penny of disability. Why? I'm crazy stubborn.

    You can do this, mama. It isn't easy. But what worthwhile is? But it is so worth it. Because it's such a tiny part of their whole lives. All else can wait. Housework, showers, even the job. If you can get additional leave, get it. Trust me you will never regret it. I dealt with every issue under the sun, a wicked case of thrush, oversupply that cause my baby to be sick, reflux, apnea, anemia, mastitis, plugged ducts, bloody milk, raw nipples, you name it. All I needed was time and patience. And these llladies here to hold my hand while I did it.
    If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun. - Katharine Hepburn

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