Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Silver Lining

I think it might be the sleep deprivation, but I feel like I still haven't processed the fact that both Oli & I are unemployed. We've both been laid off at different times in the last few years, but never both been unemployed. I feel like I should be more worried, but maybe it's just that I'm so glad he's here to help me with the baby. I don't think I'd be sleeping at all if I had to do all this on my own. Maybe I would have given up on breastfeeding by now...

Despite how much more complicated it is to use formula, it's way more complicated to be feeding with both the breast & the bottle. Formula means spending time going to store & buying it, measuring & preparing it, heating it, cleaning & occasionally sterilizing bottles, remembering to bring it along when you go out... Exclusive breastfeeding requires no heating, no sterilizing or cleaning, no shopping, no measuring, just eating a little more to cover the extra caloric expenditure. It's my main goal in life at this point: to get back to 100% breastfeeding (if possible) as soon as I can.

So I spend a few hours a day with little L lying on my chest, or strapped on to me in our wrap, skin-to-skin, as it's been shown to help with milk supply. I'm taking Domperidone to help with supply as well. I wake up as often as I can manage at night & try not to let him go more than three hours between the beginning of one feeding to the next. This has been the hardest thing--when a feeding takes 60-90 minutes, I just don't wake up until he's good & crying mad, sometimes four hours later. Then I try to pump after every feeding to stimulate more production. In between is when I occasionally sleep an hour here & there. I'm trying to eat healthy & drink enough water, but so often I find myself pinned to the couch by a 9-pound person, unable to reach my water bottle, weighing the pros & cons of hydration versus waking him up.


  1. If you really want to feed every 3 hours, you could try setting a watch alarm? But then you don't have the chance to sleep a bit longer. The LCs told me it was so important to feed the girls every 3 hours when they were newborn, because they were so tiny (a bit more than half Sprout's weight!), so my watch alarm was set on countdown-repeat, and beeped every 3 hours, 'round the clock. Eventually, they woke themselves up every 3 hours, so I turned it off.


  2. I tried setting my phone alarm at 12, 3, 6, 9am, 12, 3, 6, 9pm for a day & we couldn't keep up with the schedule. The alarms would then wake me up too early... What might work better is something like a kitchen timer that I could just wind up after every feeding.

    He seems to feed more vigorously if he's good & mad when he gets on the breast, which tends to be more than three hours apart.

  3. Wow. I feel for you! I recall the days of sleep deprivation and I'm so glad to be over them! Thank goodness babies are so cute and we love them so much! xo


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