Feeling: Tired and Drained and Sore all over. But kinda loving the whole experience of it
I really hoped that the blog wouldn’t become all about breastfeeding, there are so many other things that the little bub is going through, but UNFORTUNATELY, my boobs are a major part of that little life right now, so bear with me while I go through the gory details.
After all, all babies do is eat, shit, and sleep, so my boobs are technically making up a third of his life – that should be enough justification for booby-breastfeeding posts 😛
So, my mum has been feeding me really well, or I’ve been blessed with my family’s good genes and I’m producing massively well for the little bub.
I never said this, but when the lactation consultant came in one day #2 of little bub’s existence, her (extremely painful) pinching of my nipples produced an abundance of colostrum to nourish my progeny. By day #4 I had come into my milk and my bub was gaining weight steadily.
He was gaining so much weight, that even though we left the hospital at a weight of 2.7kg (from his birth weight of 2.9kg), he put that weight all back on in under a week.
After an additional week when we returned for his jaundice follow-up, bub was at 3.1kg and even the PD was amazed – he was basically saying that in normal scenarios, the ideal weight gain is 100g per week and what we’ve achieved was really commendable.
And to give you a fair idea of how well the bub is eating, just a few days shy of the actual 1 month mark, the little bub is 4.1kg last count on Friday before the weekend.
Now I’m not gloating about my stupendous supply of milk or anything…
But having a good supply isn’t all that’s cracked up to be.
There’re a host of issues that pop up when you’re hyper-lactating as the doctors call in and they are not funny at all.
I had a recent bout of swollen boobies this last week. A bout that needed 1 trip to Mt A to get a Lactation Consultant to squeeze the life out of them, subsequent Massage Lady assistance to further release the building pressure, a further resulting massive blockage which included a red patch on one side which burned with immense heat and required the sacrifice of a head of lettuce to reduce pain and swelling and to provide a bit of relief.
And also because blocked ducts apparently cause infections if not treated quickly enough and can even lead to surgery to drain the abscess *shiver* – obviously we don’t want that to happen, so a doctor’s visit was required.
And finally another home visit by the Lactation Consultant to further clear ducts vis-a-vis excruciating booby squeezing.
When people tell you that they have blocked ducts and they are smiling at you, beware the pain within. They are holding it at bay with tight and pursed lips.
It’s a happy problem to have a good (or in my case an oversupply) though. I’m not about to say that I’m not grateful for my problem when there are a lot of ladies who struggle with boosters and getting their equipment to work right.
Every day, on the breastfeeding FB channels, there’s a this lady or that lady who talks about what supplements to take or what things to do in order to ensure that their boobies continue to product liquid gold for their bubbies…..
For the same reason that I felt so horrendously inadequate during pregnancy for not being able to help my bub gain weight while inside of me, I have no idea how I would feel if the same happened when he was born and I can see the effects of not being able to nourish him.
Of course there are a lot of ladies that talk about how they feed formula, or mix, and the debate is timeless – to express, bottle-feed, direct latch the baby onto the boob and etc… If I’ve ever learnt anything from my failed experience with hypnobirthing, it’s not to judge what I don’t understand until I can put myself into the shoes of others.
In any case, I read about so many ladies that give up on breastfeeding because of the problems that they stumble across, mastitis, engorgement, under- or over- supply of milk, inverted or weirdly shaped nipples and/or fast and slow flows…. And I have to put my foot down right here and say that I WILL NOT GIVE UP!
Best to focus on my own problems and fix what I can in my own capacity. Even if that means more expenditure on the massage ladies and lactation consultants…
Which means lots and lots of rest that needs to be somehow coordinated amidst the nights which provide no rest and the days which are spent at the little bub’s beck and call…
That being said, in the coming week, I’ve got a lot of things to navigate, which include the fact that me mum will be going back to her place from now onwards. That means, fending for myself for food and the like.
We just celebrated the bub’s 1st month in a massive party on Sunday (which probably was partially responsible for the swollen and problematic boobs…)
It’s not his ACTUAL full month date which is (by calendar) on the 26th of February, but was a good way for the grandparents to show off their first and only grandson (for now) and give us a chance to tell people about our beautiful, healthy, baby boy.
With all that done with, by tradition, bubby has had his time to adjust to the big, wide world and it’s time to relinquish the help and settle down to the realities of bringing up the bubby at home on my own.
As I was saying, my mum’s gonna start passing the baton to us as we slowly try to establish a bit of a routine for our household.
While I’m sad to have my mum go, I’ll be honest and say that it wasn’t a walk in the park living with her again. After a good majority of a decade being a half of a couple, I haven’t lived under the same roof as my mum in a LONG, LONG TIME.
Once you “move out” and live under your own rules, it’s really quite hard to go back to it again. And in addition to that, I’ll admit it – I’m not the easiest person to live with.
(OMG, I can’t believe I admitted it on the INTERNET. My shame, immortalised.. Forever! GAH..)
ESPECIALLY since I’ve got my own place where certain things are done in a certain way. Like I refuse to have things left sitting in the sink when I’m cooking. I absolutely have to try and clear as many dishes as possible whilst I’m in between dishes. AND they have to be arranged PROPERLY. A place for everything and everything in its proper place and all that you know?
Yes, I’m OCD. Hasn’t that been established a long time ago ? *makes a face*
But in any case, if I’m so particular about how the kitchen sink is being run, what more about the bringing up of my son right?
Yeah, so I needed to be allowed to handle my son as and when I needed to and to be able to leave him along at times knowing that there’s somebody I trust looking after him. And while I adjusted to the new person in the house, I could rest easy because, who would take better care of the bub than the bub’s grandma right?
Making a run for the toilet has never been so scary today knowing that if he starts wailing while I’m on the throne, that SOMEHOW I’d need to cut things short and stand to attention because there isn’t ANYBODY else around for miles that could attend to him, but me.
Heaven forbid I need to make runs out to settle business with clients at this time when I’ve barely got things at home settled..
Speaking of which, can you believe that clients would bombard you with things to do at this time when I need to NOT think about work.. There are also clients who are so cutely embarrassed that they are troubling me that it’s amazing to see the difference between real people who care about you versus…… OTHERS.
But moving on…
We’ve been thinking about getting lunch catered for me via a tingkat (Chinese tier-ed lunch-box with a number of dishes inside) service because while I’ve got a good supply of milk built up right now, we can’t take it for granted that it will be like that forever once my mum’s good food is no longer in easy access.
I’m super going to miss having home-cooked food made with the love and the familiarity of my mum. Not living with her for such an extended period of time really makes you forget how wonderful it is to be cared for like this.
So, closing the chapter of confinement in my life, at least until I have #2, I’d just like to say that I really appreciate all my blessings in life.
Even throughout my problems, the reality of it all is that the problems were never big and always solvable when I put my mind (or reluctant wallet) to it, and have always never been an issue that wasn’t trumped by someone else’s issues.
It’s important that I log down right here and now how grateful I should be for being blessed despite of the things that we’ve been going through and to again, take stock of where the Lord has been giving us his divine providence throughout everything.
If there is something that I need to do, is to take a step back and breathe before, during and after each experience that I come across during the day. After all, it’s still barely beginning and there’s lots more to go. Better to enjoy every trial and tribulation than to fret and fuss over spilt milk (which by the way, I have done – cry over spilt milk, that is).
So looking forward to more things coming,