Day Nine

The lactation consultant came by today. We had originally called her to get some ‘fine tuning’ but everything went a bit pear shaped the day before she arrived so it was extra useful to have her here.

It seems that Gus is not getting enough milk fast enough. A combination of him being lazy on the boob (falling asleep or just casually snacking) and me not producing enough.

And it all becomes a downward cycle, he doesn’t get enough, which means he wakes earlier to eat, which means he’s tired and doesn’t munch with enough vigour. It also means that I don’t get enough sleep which is key to production.

So she gave us lots of tips and tricks and we now have a plan: operation milk making.

Tip #8:
Modern day rocking chair

10 thoughts on “Day Nine

  1. Sorry to hear you hit a bit of a speed bump with nursing. That is totally normal. It can be tough, but once it works it is great! Good luck. We love you!

  2. hey em,

    good luck. i think (at least to me) it seemed like nursing was supposed to be some easy, natural thing before i had kids. and, from what i experienced and my friends, your first one is not that easy (unless you’re an exception to the rule) at first. but, thank heavens for lactation consultants. hang in there! it gets easier and better and faster.

  3. Thanks! I hope I don’t sound like I’m complaining. It’s all very doable, but yes, you think that it’s all very easy beforehand. Who knew it could be so complicated?

  4. I definitely don’t think it sounds like you’re complaining…you’re sharing part of the complications, the things everyone shrugs off after they’ve done it or if they’ve never ever done it and seem to think it *looks* easy. But I’ve heard from enough people lately, new mothers and old, that it takes some work most of the time and very few have a truly easy time of it. It’s rewarding and the struggle, it seems to me, probably makes the payoff of a successful breastfeeding experience taste sweeter and makes the bond greater. Not to say that if someone doesn’t or can’t breastfeed that she won’t have a bonding experience anyway.

    I’m very happy and relieved to read about the things you guys are going through because it will hopefully make me think about how we want to approach things when the first days after the birth hit us, and we’re struggling with our own frustrations at trying to make the baby comfortable or determine just what the routine should be. There are solutions, even though sometimes I’m certain it feels like you’ll never figure it out.

    It’s also nice to read it because it makes all of us, i’m sure, feel like we’re still close even though we are miles away and can’t visit with you or hear about your daily routine in person.

  5. Hey Em,
    My sister is still nursing twins. She’s basically a milk factory right now. She might have some tips/useful notions about that. Seems like i remember she had set up some dietary plan and routine that made the whole thing easier. Want me to pass on her address?

  6. Hey Em, Ask your girl cousin about her first 6 months. I tried to starve her to death because I bought into the La Leche League stuff that breast feeding was the most natural thing in the world and we would automatically know what to do and our bodies would produce all the milk our newborns need if we just perservere. It isn’t that easy. I so honor the women who don’t just assume they are “natural mothers’ and they will do everything just right. I almost blew it with my firstborn. She turned out okay, so far. (big smile – she is totally fabulous)

    You are such a good woman. You will do Gus proud and he will be a happy and healthy little person.

  7. I’ve been wondering about you up in Alaska with the babies. Were you in Eagle for the newborn phases or up the river at the cabin? How old were either when you moved out of ‘town’?

  8. Lena was born in Fairbanks and at a week and a half we went back home – mail plane to Eagle and dog sled up the river to our cabin. The next day Steve and his brother went off for a few days and I was in bed sick with my new baby. Fortunately it was a very warm spell for January so keeping the stove going wasn’t too bad.

    When Elias was about a week and a half we drove the Alcan (actually, Steve did all the driving while I sat on a foam rubber donut) with 2 year old Lena and the newbie babe. We got to Eagle then took our boat home. So, the short answer is that by two weeks old both babies were home in our bush cabin. I had next to zero support system. That is why I almost starved Lena to death. (hyperbole much?)

  9. Quick clarification – Lena was born in January, thus the dogsled on the frozen Yukon. Elias, born in April, had a thawed river, thus the boat.

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