July 25, 2011

My First 2 Weeks of Breastfeeding

Mommy & 3 day old Miss A
Let me begin by saying, motherhood would be ten times more enjoyable if I could get at least a five hour stretch of sleep throughout the night... For some reason, I wasn't anticipating the true meaning of sleep deprivation. Miss A is hungry every 2-3 hours for the most part. However, I think she just went through her first official growth spurt because she was hungry every single hour yesterday! Feeding her is getting very tiring. I have to remind myself that her tummy is very small & breast milk digests faster than formula, making her hungry more often.

Overall I don't really mind breastfeeding because it is easier than getting up and making warm bottles every 2-3 hours. As soon as she was born, the doctor handed her to me and I fed her. She latched on perfectly the first try. The first week she ate for 15 minutes on each side. That was good! Now she goes for about 10 minutes on each side or only 15 minutes on one side. I have no clue the amount of milk she is actually getting but I assume it's the right amount because she has gained her birth weight back and is definitely over 8lbs now. She also has plenty of wet & dirty diapers!

I like breastfeeding because I know it's the healthiest choice for Miss A. Like I already mentioned, there is nothing to prepare when she is hungry. If someone is around I just go somewhere private to feed her. Otherwise, I usually spend the entire day in my bra. It's easier. I also like breastfeeding because it is really great bonding time. Sometimes she is just sleepy and falls asleep, but other times she is wide-eyed and staring up at me while she eats. It's precious. <3 It's also nice to know breastfeeding has many health benefits for the both of us, including helping me burn off my leftover 15lbs from pregnancy!

Breastfeeding is not my favorite thing because my boobs are sore! It might be getting better... but I really don't think so. I'm pretty sure that she latches on correctly and it's just my body taking forever to adjust! I use lanolin after every feeding and so far have not had any bleeding/cracking issues. [That just sounds terrible!!!] The worst part is when my boobs are engorged & they're filled to the max with milk. I pump sometimes if Miss A is not hungry but I don't want to increase my milk supply by pumping in between feedings. Sometimes if she waits a good 3-4 hours before getting hungry, I pump an ounce of milk from each side before feeding her. This way she doesn't struggle for so long trying to latch on. It's also less painful for me. [BTW, I use the Medela Swing Breast Pump and it works wonders! I can't image using a hand pump... mainly bc I pump one side while feeding her on the other side... I am getting better at multi-tasking!] In general breastfeeding does not hurt, it's just the initial latching on! Several nurses told me that the pain from this will go away soon. [Still waiting...] Another inconvenience is choosing which clothes are easiest to breastfeed while wearing. I personally think it is harder to find clothes to wear while breastfeeding, compared to my third trimester of pregnancy.

Regardless of the self sacrifices I have to make in order to breastfeed [and take care of my child forever...!] I feel obligated and want to continue breastfeeding. My goal is to breastfeed solely, no formula for at least 3 months. I will do a reassessment at that point. It really depends on whether or not I find a career job that is worth having. I have to like it and make enough money to see if it's worth paying for a babysitter and losing precious childhood moments 40 hours a week.

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Thanks for reading!
xx Monica xx

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