Saturday, May 21, 2011

Milk delivery... Maybe, Maybe Not


On Monday, I was sad. I was praying for a fast and full delivery of milk!

Tula is 8 and a half months, and breast feeding has been (still is) an awesome journey. I have been so blessed to be able to start nursing right away with no complications like I had with Ivy. I have enjoyed every moment nursing and have been thankful for those quiet times with her. It has been a sacrifice- to be the only one up at night time feedings, to be the one sitting in a dusty utility closet twice a day at work, and to not be able to do things like fit into my old clothes, wear pretty bras, and run like I used to! But every bit has been worth it :)

I was sad on Monday because over the last few weeks I have watched my milk supply drop a bit. I think it is largely due to a bad cold (now sinus infection) that Tula has been plagued with, coupled with her dropping night time feedings (a blessing)! However, I have been concerned with the smaller amount that I am producing at work. On Monday, I was 3 oz. short which was not a problem since I have frozen milk but the problem was that I had NO new milk when I got home and it was time to feed my baby. With a heavy heart and tears from her, I prepared the first bottle I have ever fed her- but she took it wonderfully! For that, I was so thankful! She was flexible and let me feed her in this new way.

I talked to the lovely lactation ladies- who have been a great support- and they assured me that a drop in supply was fairly normal at this stage in nursing. They gave me some suggestions and encouragement- some that I will take and some that I will leave. In the end, this is my new plan- since you know I have a "plan" for everything!

I am mixing her bottles at the sitters half milk and half formula- which Tula is tolerating beautifully- thank you, Jesus, for being faithful again during this transition! I have dropped to pumping once at work so that I will be able to nurse Tula when I get home- since I would rather nurse than pump ANY day of the week. And I only have 8 and a half more days of the school year! Goodbye dusty closet- you will not be missed for my daily meetings with the "milk man"!

During the summer I will continue to listen to my body and Tula's responses as to when she needs more than I can make. I am now at total peace with this process. I think this may be an answer to an unspoken prayer- because I might have had trouble letting go of this time with Tula. I also know our little girl is about to have a mouthful of teeth- which frightens me, to be honest. And last, I think starting to do less nursing more bottle feeding will help Tula with the introduction to the sippy cup- which is a total fail at this point!

Overall, I am embracing my loose "plan" that could change tomorrow. Uncertainty is scary to me... but I know this is part of nursing. You don't know how much milk they get, what foods your eating that may upset their little tummies, and how your supply changes overtime. I am leaning into God as I have since being pregnant the second time around. Praying that I would be able to nurse her and boy, has He been faithful. I know either way I will be able to provide my girl with the nourishment she needs- bottle or boob- and in the end, that is all that matters!

Cheers to feeding your baby.... and that is that!

6 comments:

  1. My supply started decreasing about a month ago too:( I didn't nurse the other girls this long so I had no idea. Because of the drop in supply and a short trip that Matt and I are going on in July without kids I am in the process of weaning her to formula. It is SOOO sad but I am just taking it super slow and enjoying this last month or so. Like you said, I am just so grateful for the time I had! And Yeah for summer!

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  2. I know exactly how you feel! Elizabeth recieves a few bottles of formula a week and it was hard to let my husband give them to her. It is such a committment and it is awesome that you have made it to 8 months! We reach 9 months of nursing next week and I might have a little celebration. It is such a wonderful experience when it works out.

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  3. So sorry to hear that your supply is starting to diminish, but also so glad that you have been able to do it this long! I wish I would have been able to nurse Peyton longer, but it just didn't work out in our favor. I'm also glad that she is tolerating the change well. Good luck with your new "plan"!

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  4. Funny you should mention this because I've noticed a drop in my supply the last couple of weeks as well. I didn't experience this with my first child, so I feared there was something I was doing wrong. It's nice to read that this is fairly common. We're still getting by now but I'm glad he's almost to the 1-year mark (at least in terms of the milk!).

    Hang in there. It sounds like you have both a plan and an open mind and that's perfect.

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  5. Don't be surprised if summer schedule revives the milk supply. You are to be commended for your dedication to nursing. You'll never regret it and will have fond memories forever. You have two blessed girls and I know they bless you in turn. Enjoy summer!

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Thanks for your encouragement as I travel through this season of life called mommyhood!