I noticed, after reading through the posts since her birth, that I haven’t addressed why I’m not breastfeeding.
I had every intentions of doing so. I got nipple cream and a manual pump. I bought a feeding pillow to help with the feeds and take the strain off my arms etc.
When she was first born, in recovery, the midwife asked me what I planned to do in regards to feeding. Of course I immediately said I wanted to breastfeed. She went about trying to get Scarlett to latch. Unfortunately at that time I was so cold due to the loss of blood from surgery equaling anaemia so my nipples just would not “come out”. Scarlett got very distressed quite quickly and it became apparent it wasn’t going to happen at that point. I was partially off my head on drugs so I didn’t want to force the issue until I had all my faculties lol so I had her on forumla, which I had been prepared for and brought some cartons of ready made stuff with me. When I was on the postnatal ward and she was due a feed, again a midwife helped me try to get her to latch on. She became very distressed again because 1) there wasn’t much for her to latch on to and 2) when she managed to get in the right area, nothing was coming out. Hearing her crying because she was hungry was too much for this newly postoperative mother so I said to leave it once more and they gave her formula.
Once I was home from hospital (the next day) I tried hand expressing before she was due for a feed to try stimulate my boobs to produce something, anything. A midwife came out for my first visit the day after I was home and she helped me try again. She suggested we try the manual pump to help the nipple “stick out” a bit. It helped with that and whilst she did latch, nothing was coming out. Not a single drop. The midwife said that she was only 2 days old so to give it another day or two and my milk should come in. Day 3 is usually the magic number. So I did some more hand expressing, with no avail. Scarlett was fed on formula each feed as I didn’t want to traumatise her any further by making her latch to a milk less breast.
A few days past and my boobs started to feel different a little. They didn’t swell but they felt a little heavy. When she was a week old they suddenly felt like lead weights. I figured this was it. My milk was coming, finally. I got the pump out, I tried my hardest, nothing came out after an hour of trying. I hand expressed on and off all day. Nothing.
By the next day my boobs had drastically stopped feeling like lead weights and we’re almost back to normal. I asked about for advice and it seems that I never got any milk.
So 5 weeks on and I never got any milk in whatsoever. I was disappointed, obviously. And people have asked me what happened to breastfeeding as I had openly said its what I had planned to do. My reply was “well apparently this cow doesn’t produce milk, she produces sarcasm”. That made people laugh.
The disappointment didn’t last long. I have a support group on facebook of 80-90 ladies who were due in February (except a few of us due in January), all from the UK and I had been listening to their updates about how their babies have been feeding every 90 minutes for a few days, cluster feeding and basically just not sleeping half as much as Scarlett. It kind of made me realise that 1) clearly breastfeeding just wasn’t meant to be for us, 2) I’m incredibly lucky to have my daughter in the first place so it shouldn’t matter how I feed her and 3) I’m incredibly blessed that she is as content and happy as she is plus she sleeps and eats so well. So I made my peace with not being able to breastfeed.
So there you have it. I produce sarcasm and sass. That’s it lol
P.s. It’s 2:48am, I am wide a-fucking-wake and my little princess is flat out next to me snoring, as usual lol love her so much. She’s such a blessing and I would be lost without her!!!