Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Weaning...

Almost everyday I wake up and swear that I am done with breastfeeding. We're almost to week 14 of nursing and it's been beautiful, but mostly it's been a lot of work. I've really tried hard to be unselfish and do what is best for Henry, but sometimes it's too much. After 13 weeks, it's still painful from time to time, we're still doing it about every 60-90 minutes and I'm still waking up to engorged breasts every morning(yes I get up to pump). 
We're coming up on 4 months, which I believe is when our pediatrician will give us the go ahead on rice cereal and some fruits and veggies? This is also the point where I'll be returning to work. So I find myself at a crossroads. 
Before you jump on my case, I know breast is best. That's why I've fought through and pushed myself this far. 
But goodness, I've never been so excited to wear a real bra again. I forget what it's like to not have to plan your outfits around breastfeeding. Don't even get me started on my pump. I can't wait to drop kick it out my back door and I cannot wait to not wake up in the middle of the night to throbbing breasts. I'd also like to be able to workout again and not have to change nursing pads every 30 minutes. 
Then there's also the flip side. Henry loves to be nursed. I have a ton of milk frozen, but Henry finds comfort in actually nursing. Sometimes it's the absolute only way to calm him or put him to bed. It's also the only way I can(sometimes) get him to nap. Dad can get him to nap with the bottle, but not this lady. He'll have to be bottle fed while I'm at work. I'm sure a lot will change when I go back to work...
I don't completely hate nursing. I love what I've been able to do for my son so far. I love it when he falls asleep on me and we cuddle for hours. I do think I'll miss it when it's over, that's part of what stops me from giving in, but sometimes I think our journey may be coming to an end. 
Like I said, I have a stash, so it's not like he won't be getting breast milk at all. He just won't be nursing. 
Does your body really adjust to just two feedings a day? I've heard of women nursing once in the morning and once at night. I'm always so full(probably because I nurse 67383862billion times a day), that it seems impossible for my body to adjust that drastically. 
I know so many of you have nursed a full year+, but are there any of you that exclusively pumped or stopped altogether? I'd love to hear from you. To everyone, what was weaning like for you?
Again, please no attacks. This is my safe zone and ultimately I will do what is best for my babe and myself. :) 
Love to all of you. 
xx,
Melissa Loren

7 comments:

  1. When Addie was just 6 weeks old, I had to go back to work. I exclusively pumped until she was 7 months old. (She hated nursing so I figured breastmilk from a bottle was the next best thing!) It is certainly possible. You have to pump as often as you would nurse him, so that may be every 60-90 minutes at first. And yes, your body will adjust. You know I nursed Ingrid until last November - and for the last few months, I was only nursing twice a day. Then the last month or so, it was only before bed. And yep, there was still milk. To help with the engorgement, you might try not pumping in the night. Yes, it'll suck for a few days, but your body will adjust and learn to make less milk. There's also a strategy in The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (I forget what it's called) but you just pump or nurse on one side at a time and only 1 breast will become engorged. It's a good way to train your body to make less, etc. You can do it. If it is still hurting at this point, it might be because you are so engorged. I would get help from an LC because I don't think you should still be hurting 3 months in. There might be something they can help you with that'll make it completely pain free. Keep on keeping on. You can totally do it! You have already made it past the hardest part.

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  2. Oh, I was also going to mention... we fed Addie cereal and baby food at 4 months and I really regret it. They just aren't ready for it and it's not great for them. There's actually a lot of research saying that rice cereal is not good for babies at all. We waited to feed Ingrid homemade or organic purees until she was about 7-8 months old and she still wasn't too interested. Definitely doing baby led weaning with this next one - which is basically letting them explore real food on their own terms - no purees. Instead, they might suck on a banana, play around with bits of diced avocado, etc. Just know there are other options! Pediatricians are always so quick to recommend rice cereal but there are no benefits to going that route! xoxo

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    1. I'm so glad to hear someone else had a baby that wouldn't do baby food purees. Avery is going on 9 months and won't eat anything unless she can feed herself (rusks, rice puffs, etc) and I'm just kind of going with it now. I wish we had done baby led weaning with both of them, it would of saved everyone a lot of tears.

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  3. I was engorged alot myself, being jaxon wont take a bottle for me at all only wants to be nursed. Sometimes I think he uses me to comfort nurse ha ha. And its the only way I can get him to sleep also!!!!. Nursing is so hard, and time consuming. I have also thought about quiting and he is 8.months old today. But I ised to nurse and be a pump natzee(sp) trying to store breast milk. I was over producing and leaking all the time too. Whats funny is he doesn't even like my frozen breast milk it tastes funny to him and he refuses to drink it lol!!!! Did all that work for nothing. I quit pumping so much my milk production went down. Now I no longer have to wear nursing pads. My milk production actually went down too much!!! I had to buy fenugreek and eat a loy of oatmeal and I have it back now, but I still dont have to wear pads. I think my body got used to eat and I quit leaking. I tried rice cereal and it constipated the hell out of him:( we are now soing baby oatmeal and he does alot better with that. He is a little.on the small side and the dr got ob to me for feeding him more baby food then nursing, said nursing and milk are the best for the baby the first year. That milk is way more important then baby food. I honestly had no clue, I thought food would be more more important, but I guess its not. Plus I keep telling myself if I quit ill still have to buy formula and that so expensive I would rather be using that money for something else. :( its a no win situation lol. When do u have to go back to work?? I would try now to stop pumping as much. Maybe skip the morning pump and nurse henry asap when he gets up. It will hurt but after a few days it gets easier. Good luck girlie your doing great. ;)!!!

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  4. You need to do whatever is best for you and your baby. Don't listen to negative things from other people. Everybody is different. You are doing great!

    meplusbmakes3.blogspot.com

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  5. The pressure to breastfeed is tremendous and I totally get the guilt and torn feelings about weaning, but ultimately you are the one that gets to make the decision of what is best for you and that sweet little boy. I breastfed exclusively for 9 months with Lucas, then did half and half when my supply dropped until he was 12 months. With Avery, I breastfed exclusively for 6 months and then my supply dropped off almost completely and now, at 9 months, I only get to breastfeed her once or twice a day (and yes, your supply will adjust to accommodate twice a day feedings if that's what you want). I have a feeling our breastfeeding journey is almost at it's end, even though I had wanted to breastfeed for 12-15 months with each of them. Everyone's journey with breastfeeding is different, bodies are different, needs are different. You have to do what is right for you, and I'm sure you'll have lots of support in your decision, Mama.

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  6. You ladies are lovely! Thank you for your wisdom and kind words!

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