Monday, July 6, 2015

The Story of Little A and the Boobies That Could

Ahhhhh... breastfeeding. It's a magical - and incredibly frustrating - experience! Baby #2 proved to be quite a challenge in the eating department, as I'm sure is apparent from previous posts. I thought I'd gather it all together in one place for other breastfeeding mamas...

Little A was born in May, and he latched on no problemo! I thought we would be good to go, since he seemed to be drinking swimmingly. 

But, those first two weeks turned into a nightmare, as A was always hungry, never slept, and consistently cried. My mom was in town for the birth and those first two weeks, and we tried every trick in the book. No dice. He was NOT a happy camper. 

He was so cute when he was mad, though. ;) 

After two weeks of screaming, crying (from both of us), and way too many Google searches, I made an appointment to see a Lactation Consultant. Boy, am I glad I did!! The poor little guy was barely eating HALF of what he needed! I am so grateful for the technology we have to determine how many ounces babies eat after a feeding. It's incredible! 

The Lactation Consultant suggested I buy a pump, and start supplementing. So I would feed him, then pump, then feed him a bottle of what I just pumped. Every two hours. Let me write that again in case you missed it. EVERY. TWO. HOURS. For two months, this was the routine, and let me tell you - I was done. In addition to this incredibly time-consuming feeding process, Little A was not digesting it very well. His BMs turned very mucousy and very liquid. This was a sign of dairy-intolerance likely, I was told. So I stopped all dairy. This, however, did not help the eating problem. 

Sooooo we switched to formula for awhile. You can read all about that horror here. Needless to say, formula was not going to work for little A, either, so after 2 weeks, I decided we were going to try breastfeeding again. 

YES - I was able to restart my supply!!! It took alot of work, alot of nursing, and alot of sleepless nights; but we did it. Clogged ducts were a HUGE issue for me (check out this post for more info on that), since my supply was increasing, but A wasn't eating it all to keep it up. I looked and looked for a breast compress that would fit around the whole thing, but no dice! I finally gave up and made my own.

After restarting the supply, we still needed to figure out why he wasn't eating enough, and why the mucousy stools! I kept off dairy, and that helped significantly with the BMs. It just took a couple of weeks for it to run its course. 

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As the research queen of my family, I took to Google again to find out what was going on with the little man, and decided it must be a lip tie. So, back to the Lactation Consultant we go, and ask about a lip tie. With a "that could very well be" and a "make an appointment with the ENT", we were off! The ENT discovered that A did indeed have a lip tie! But not a lower lip tie - an upper lip tie. Hence, the suction issues. One quick snip and we were out the door. I sat in my car breastfeeding the poor baby to help soothe his pain, and then he was fine. 

From then on, we have not had one issue (save for dairy) with breastfeeding and are currently going on month 13!! I never - I mean NEVER - thought I'd be one of those mom who not only is breastfeeding past a year, but is also becoming a huge advocate for the #normalizebreastfeeding movement that's sprung up! I am so very passionate about helping other moms succeed at their breastfeeding goals, and support those who are working at it with all their might. I didn't think I was going to be able to breastfeed Little A, but here we sit, wondering how long it'll be before he weans. (Personally, I'm not quite ready yet. These moments are just so very precious.)

I hope this post, and the blog in general, become a great source of encouragement for you moms! Let me know in the comments how your breastfeeding journey is going, and what kinds of topics would be supportive for you! 

Thanks for reading,

Milk Mama Heather

Looking for more? Check out this post on Breastfeeding Myths People Keep Telling You

Disclosure: I am not a medical professional, and all information on this site is strictly opinion. If you aren’t sure about your situation, please seek professional medical advice from your doctor. This post contains affiliate links, which allow me to obtain compensation on products that visitors purchase. That said, I do not link to products that I would not personally recommend.


Lydia @ Thrifty Frugal Mom said...

So glad you were able to figure out the issue! That had to be frustrating. I love breastfeeding and am a huge fan of it, but when my 2nd child got thrush really badly at about 4 mo. old and then gave it to me (in my breast it showed up as yeast), I was about ready to throw in the towel. It was the most painful thing I've ever experienced other than child birth! But I managed to stick with it and we finally got the thrush/yeast all cleared up and I nursed her until she was nearly 16 mo. old.

Enjoy those moments breastfeeding. They go by so quickly! :)

Rachael DeBruin said...

Hi Heather! Thanks so much for visiting my blog & linking up with us :)

So interesting that you were able to get your supply back up after stopping...I didn't even know that could be done, well done successfully anyway...good for you!

Kayleigh @ Sugar in My Texas Tea said...

We also had an upper lip tie!! My story is so similar to yours. Way to hang in there!!