Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Pumping breastmilk

I know this is a detail NO ONE wants to read, LOL, but since it is now an all-consuming part of my life, I'm going to have to share it. Maybe it will help the lone pumper out there who is going through the same thing.

Day 1 & 2 when baby was born, I was put on Magnesium Sulfate, which is evil, evil stuff. I sat there in bed letting it eat away at my muscles. I kept asking the nurses and doctors about getting breastpumping initiated (I knew it was important!) but I just don't think it was possible.

Day 3, coming out of Mag Sulf took most of the day. Every time I looked, odd brown shaped cartoon characters followed my line of sight. Ok, that sounds really exaggerated, but it was true. I kept seeing brown monkeys. Which is better than with Z's birth, when I saw black demon faces. I'll take brown monkeys anyday! I started pumping around 11am ish, and got my 1st yield: about 10 ml combined from both breasts. I continued to try pumping, but no longer got anything. An LLC (Lactation Consultant) came whipping into my room talking about the Greatness of Breastmilk. She whipped out a fancy chart detailing all of the many times I should be pumping and how much I should get at each pump. She wrote a Big Number at the top of the chart, showing I was *supposed* to be getting this number at each pump. And she criticized me for not getting the pumping started sooner. She came in briskly, saying, "this is Day 4" (even though it was Day 3) and I felt very belittled by the whole event. I spent the rest of the day crying over the pump and getting...nothing...

Day 4. I decide I'm going to pump like there's no tomorrow even if NOTHING comes out EVER. And so I do. Starting the nighttime of Day 3, well into the daytime of Day 4, I'm spending every spare minute at the pump and educating all those who wander into my room of the simple joys of breastpumping. Well, actually, it's not really all that joyful. But I pretend...By evening, I'm finally seeing a few rare drops of liquid fall into the bottle. Plop............plop......
Another LLC came into my room this day, but she was so encouraging and helpful. What a difference! I know who to call on if I need help!

Day 5. Now I'm getting 5-10 ml per pump, which isn't much, and baby girl is actually consuming more than I can provide. But it's a start. I'm just going to take each drop as an extra blessing and keep working at it. And if you want to know what you can do to help - be my supporter and encourager! Yes, my lil baby is getting some formula, and yes I want so much to provide everything she needs! And yes, I desire to have one of those sweet suckling babes at the breast. But sometimes it doesn't go that way. I'll continue to pray, continue to hope, but just having a healthy baby (breastfed or otherwise) is ultimately my goal.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your last line is the best! A healthy baby whether breast or bottle feed is what is important. You are doing your very best and that is all you can do! So don't sweat it!

I'm sure Lisa might have some advice. But remember it's not worth getting upset over! You've got a beautiful baby and that's the best!