June 10, 2012

My Thoughts on Breastfeeding

Yes this will be a post on breastfeeding. So if that is something that grosses you out or you aren't interested, please don't read ahead.

I knew when I got pregnant that I wanted to breastfeed my baby. I just knew it was the best for my baby so I was going to give it my best try. While working at the Pediatric office and Labor and Delivery, I had the chance to learn about techniques, positions, etc. I was supposed to educate when I had never done it myself!

When Amelia was born, it took the doctor awhile to finish and I was pretty uncomfortable so I received some pain medicine that made me sleepy. There they do the bath and assessment in the nursery so I let them take her, really with me holding her like a minute. I was sleeping off and on during the afternoon and finally about three hours later I felt like myself again, but Amelia was still in the nursery! I think finally about four hours after she was born I got to really hold her!

One of the things we stress in our hospital is to nurse as soon as possible. I was worried how Amelia would do considering she did not get the chance. The first feeding was a little come and go, like a lot of first feelings. My nurse came in for a minute to see the progress. I can't remember if she gave me any pointers, kind of felt like I was on my own. But with each feeding Amelia was such a good little feeder. She lost a little weight in the hospital (down from 8 lb 2 oz to 7 lb 11 oz) but nothing too worrying. I came home and kept nursing her. She would nurse like every 3 hours. I remember always stressing that she would nurse at least fifteen minutes. After her first weight check and no weight gain, I was grateful for a doctor who said lets just recheck her weight in a few days and encouraged me to nurse. And she gained weight like a champ and has fattened up ever since!!

Let me just say that breastfeeding is a lot of work. And it takes a lot of commitment, especially at 3 in the morning when your husband is asleep and you're up nursing the baby. And it's painful at first, pretty painful at first. But I stuck with it and now it doesn't hurt. I do love the bonding between Amelia and I. Now she look up at me and give me a little smile. Melts me heart! Of course she also reaches up and pulls my lip, pinches me, acts mischevious!

The other side about being a working mom is pumping and Amelia taking bottles of pumped milk whe I am gone. When I first started back at work, I was pumping a lot! Now I don't pump nearly as much. It's difficult with my job to pump. My job is different than other nursing positions because I have to watch my fetal strips all the time. So when I pump I have to find someone who wants to watch my strip for me for 15ish minutes. Which isn't a big deal but I have to pump 3+ times a shift, it's difficult. I could be pushing for 2 hours, in a c/s and recovery and so on. It's hard. I try to pump before and after work and my days at home. But I really dislike pumping. It can be frustrating when you aren't pumping the amount you think you should be.

Also breastfeed babies take less in the bottle than formula fed babies. Many times, I have had to correct people who say she is not getting enough at the bottle. I'm sure they mean well but seriously I know my baby. I also know that she nurses at bunch even when I work. She still nurses at night, she's growing. She gets plenty! Okay rant over! ;)

Amelia went to Indiana for three days with Joe and did get some formula because I didn't have enough saved up. But she did fine and came right back to me to nurse!! My little sweetie! I get asked a lot about how often I will nurse. My goal was 6 months so everything else is bonus! I think we will let her tell me when she's done. I don't think I will be on the cover of the times breastfeeding her at 4 but I think we will still have awhile! So that was my long post on breastfeeding after 7 months so far! Did you breastfeed?

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Heather said...

My goal was to breastfeed for a year. It was so hard! Especially the first month. Truth be told, I HATE breastfeeding...there, I said it. But I knew it was best for the kids, and lets face it, cheaper! Like you said, it did hurt a lot, I used nipple shields for a long time. But, I made it to a year with both kiddos, and if/when we have another, I'll breastfeed again! I may not have liked it, but I don't regret it.

April Yates said...

I'm one of those weird moms who loved it. Cara was constantly nursing, but I stayed at home and she was my only at that point, so it worked for us. She started to wean herself at 8 mo. and we quit completely at 11 mo. Bekah was more "normal" (15 min. feedings like Amelia) however she didn't want to stop LOL. I loved the bonding, and at a year we were only doing bedtime/night feedings, but the stinker started using me as a pacifier and was still getting up a couple times during the night at 18 mo.!!! So, I had to force the issue. If we have another, I'm not sure what BF would look like, but I'd def. do it again.

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