- After a breast reduction surgery in 2001, I was told that i should be able to breasfeed.
- During our BF classes we were told that they usually see breast reduction women have trouble and they've never seen a reduction breast go 100%. This really upset me because this was one of the things i was REALLY looking forward to with Alexsa.
- We did everything we could to boost my production after she was born: Shatavari suppliments, Mother's Milk Tea, Beer, weekly lactation appointments, extra pumping, and extra feedings...
- Around 2 months things started looking up... but as soon as my prodcution would almost meet her needs, she would up her intake...
- When I got back to work when she was 7 weeks, I had to pump twice a day, but being away from her for so long during the day really diminished my production, then she got so used to the bottle she would fight me at the breast.
- It got to the point where she would only latch with me in the mornings, and now, not at all.
- Becuase I've been SOLEY pumping, my production just gets worse and worse every week...
I tried for another day to get Alexsa to latch. I didn't even use the SNS so i could focus on just getting her to want the boob again. It was hopeless. It's like she lost the association of my breast with food. So Thursday at work I called our lactation consultant (the hospital offers free support for 1 year!) and Toni was just wonderful. She talked me through and explained that I have to 'find the balance'. She of course didn't want to tell me to stop, but as I explained to her what all we've done, she said some things that made me decide to throw in the towel. She asked if I had the ability to take a week off of work to try and get her to latch again. I of course don't, taking all my PTO for my maternity leave after she was born. That made me realize that we just don't have the ability to make the commitment needed for her to truly latch again... and to what results? I'd just have to go back to work and the cycle would start again.
I've tried not to let popular opinion sway me from pumping what I can. At work when my co-workers see how little I produce after 20 minutes they wonder why I even bother. (sometimes just 1/2 oz total!) But I know how important BM is, and even a little is better than nothing. Currently, with 3-4 pumping sessions a day, I make about 5 oz of BM for her, or a little less than 1 meal's worth.
We made the decision to keep pumping until I make less than 3oz a day. At least she'll continue to get some and maybe by that time she'll be starting on solids and it won't be as big a deal. This is definitely not the way we wanted to go. Barry and I feel that breast milk is SOO important. And I probably could do more to up my production, and in the process never get to spend any time with Alexsa. Sometimes you just have to step back and find a balance.