Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Carson's Breastfeeding Story: Part 1...Setting the Stage

I've been meaning to share our breastfeeding adventure with Carson but haven't found the time.....not like I have time now....but seeing that it's National Breastfeeding Month...I thought I'd at least start the story!!  Today I'll share my past experiences with breastfeeding because I think they "set the stage" to where I was mentally when Carson was born.

Carson being child #6 means I've had some experience with breastfeeding.  Eighteen years to be exact!!!  Each of my children had their set of problems and trials.  That is the first misconception any prospective parent needs to debunk.....breastfeeding does not come easy or naturally.  I get all wound up when I read articles that state how easy it is!!  It isn't for a LOT of mommies and babies.  BUT..... is it worth all the trials.....YOU BET!!! SET THE STAGE....

Child #1.....This lovely girl came out NOT nursing.  She refused my breasts for the first 10 days of her life.  This was a huge blow to a brand new mommy wanting to breastfeed so badly!  I worked with a nurse from the hospital and began pumping.  I continued to try to get her to latch on and finger fed her until one magical day....I'll NEVER forget where I was and the excitement I felt......she latched on.  We had a beautiful breastfeeding relationship from that day forward.

Child #2.....This girl came out with a strong desire to suck and me having the experience from the first we started off pretty good.   However, at about 4 months into it the pain started.  I would nurse at night and 20-30 minutes after the session I was in EXTREME pain....deep within my breasts.  It didn't seem to hurt as much during the day.   I saw my doctor for it, but she wouldn't treat me for anything because she said she didn't know what it was.  I was in agony for 2 months before it went away.  Her bedtimes would get later and later, but my husband would plead with me to put her to bed at a reasonable time.  I just hated the pain.  Still not so sure what was going on with her.

Child #3.....My little peanut.  She was born with the cord wrapped around her neck twice and her body once.  This didn't pose a problem until about 3 weeks later when she began to vomit all her meals.  NOT SPIT UP!!!  I had so much pandering from my doctor..."Well, you know spit up looks like a lot, but it's actually about a tablespoon."  WHAT.EV.ER!!!  This child vomited for the first 2 years of her life.  We didn't nurse well because I felt like I was always nursing, then vomiting, then nursing.  It was really hard to figure out.  She wasn't gaining doctor wanted me to put her on formula.  UMMMM.....Let's work on the VOMITING before we try to put weight on her!!!

Child #4....This girl came out sucking her thumb....I'm not kidding!!!  She was a great nurser from the beginning, but we must not have had a good latch or something.  I ended up with mastitis often in the beginning.    I was in bed quite a bit getting over fevers and the pain.

Child #5....The "one I didn't nurse"!  There was something about him.  I started out instantly with extremely cracked nipples.  He would "chew bite" suck.  It was soooo painful.  Plus the mastitis.  I was in a daze for the first two weeks.  I had the other four children to care for.  I saw my doctor and 2 lactation consultants.  They were saying my nipples weren't recognizable and I needed to stop for a time to heal.  Me being as exhausted as I was and constantly getting high fevers, I succumbed quickly to buying formula and feeding him a bottle.  But I did begin to pump.  I tried latching him on a few times after the first couple of weeks, but his "suck" was so painful.  I instantly bled.  I did not nurse this little guy, but was able to pump for about 5 months before it got too overwhelming.

I think the fact that I didn't nurse baby #5 (which also happens to be my "diabetes boy"....apparently not a correlation, but this mom has a hard time not feeling mom guilt over it)....had a huge influence on what we eventually ended up doing with Carson.

So there you have my past experiences.   They all "set the stage" for BABY #6!!!

*****Disclaimer:  I am not a doctor/nurse/lactation name it.  I'm a mom!!  Plain 'ol MOM!!  So don't take what I write as medical advice....although it could be used to bombard your own doctor with questions!!

*****ANOTHER Disclaimer:  I share my breastfeeding story to encourage moms along their journey's.  I'm not here to DEBATE or be an ACTIVIST for or against breastfeeding.  I did what I did given the circumstances I was in and what I believed was best for our family.  You will do the same for your baby/family I'm sure!!:)  So don't be discouraged if you didn't breastfeed or tried and couldn't (see baby #5...been there, done that!). 

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