11 May 2011

do the boob.


One of our most basic needs, and one I was having a heck of a time giving my little lady. I struggled with breastfeeding from day one in the hospital. For the first week of Frankie's life I was a wreck. I was a sweaty, topless banshee. I smelled like I had hiked the entire Bruce Trail.
I was told nursing may be difficult for me as I didn't have much breast tissue - but it didn't really hit me what that meant.

What that meant was that Frankie wouldn't ever be satisfied & would be screaming to be fed - and if she wasn't screaming, she'd grumpily fall asleep - probably just to take her mind off her hunger. She would then wake up...screaming to be fed.

So I called the Lactation services of the hospital & they comforted me & told me to come in - they told me they could help me.

And boy howdy did they! Breastfeeding brings with it so! many! emotions! - and the guilt I felt about not being able to provide my kid with her only real demand broke my heart. It made me cry several times a day. The lactation consultant I got hooked up with gave me back my sanity - she told me it was OK - she patiently held my hand & guided me through all my options; and I tried them all. Herbal supplements, tube feeding, finger feeding, nipple shields, pumping, formula supplementing, prescription meds, understanding that happy mom = happy baby & coming to peace with the fact that giving my baby formula was not going to mess her up.

Now I am weaning off the prescription meds (side effects are NOT cool - I feel worse 5 weeks postpartum than I did 40 weeks pregnant!), I am pumping, I am happy to be giving Frankie about 50/50 Breast milk/formula & although I am sad to not have to go to see the Lactation consultant anymore, I am glad that Frankie & I have hammered out some kind of deal & we are able to forge ahead on our own.

How to thank someone for getting me through the toughest thing I've ever had to go through?

No, it's not a curling stone - it's a knitted boob!

I wasn't sure how it'd be received but I'm happy to report that she loved it. She more than loved it - she squealed! It was like she had always wanted a knitted breast & now she finally had one. She even said they may call upon me to make more for teaching purposes.

Have a beloved Lactation Consultant in your life? Knit them a boob!


Amy said...

The lactation consultant responsible for Kate in the NICU ruined my life when she was in there. She convinced me and the chief doctor that I wasn't providing enough milk and began supplementing with formula without telling us even though Kate was latching well and never lost an ounce. Then the head lactation consultant listened to my concerns and kicked her out of Kate's unit. It was the best. I should have given her a wool bewb.

Emily/Knit Addictions said...

That is awesome...your knitted boob I mean, not the struggle you had to go through. Breastfeeding is one of those things that everyone thinks 'should' be easy. I mean, mother's have been doing it since time began. But I know more and more people who struggle with it. I too struggle for a long time, those first few weeks were awful. So it's awesome you hung in there and sought the help you needed. Whatever we have to do to feed our children is good, whether formula or not. But deciding you wanted to try to nurse and sticking with it no matter how hard it gets...it takes a lot of strength. Props to you!