Wednesday, September 16, 2009

You are my sunshine

This morning I awoke to Mary Louise rustling and fussing. It was 5am and if she could understand my all too early mumbles, she would have heard me begging desperately for 5 more hours (nevermind minutes - let's get down to business here). I have been maintaining an every 3 hours pumping schedule which gets rather exciting at times when I need to pump but it overlaps with feedings. We're working it all out though. It never occurred to me that I might be setting an alarm to pump after the babies got home, but with them sleeping either not at all or for longer periods - about 4 hours at times, my pumping schedule can easily get off track and obviously my body misinterprets that into, "we need less milk." So, every 3 hours it is.

When I looked over at Mary Louise, I could just make out her little facial grimace in the dim light I keep on so that I may rather obsessively check on them throughout the night. She had her fussy face on, noticed that she had gotten my attention, made eye contact, and suddenly burst into a HUGE grin. I couldn't help but laugh. She was like a bright ray of light in the dark room - and she was all too proud that she'd found her voice as she seemed to realize that along with the voice came the power to summon.

I want to thank everyone for their input on my lack of lactation situation. The basics are still not working (fluids, more pumping, more calories) so I am working on a game plan and putting it into action. I got some of the Mother's Love supplement Astrid recommended and started it last night. So far, no noted change but the girl at the store said it may take a few days. It has Fenugreek as well as a few other mentioned lactinogenic herbs. (Oh - fear not, I've discussed what I'm doing with the pediatrician's nurse. She really wasn't any help as no one at the office had ever heard of what I was asking about. But she dutifully looked each item up in the breastfeeding/ drug interaction book and said it would be ok. I still find it odd how many people in the medical field know little or nothing about herbal medicine - especially the herbs that are generaly used in your particular area of specialty - I can't be the only person ever to call with questions about increasing milk supply.) Ok, back to the game plan...I am going out to get the brewer's yeast today I hope. Keep in mind that nothing happens outside of this house until Brent gets home in the afternoons and we live at least 30 minutes from the stores that might carry these items so it's a bit of a feat for me to get there. Once I find out what works, I'll end up just ordering it. But I think this will be a faster way to get started.

I have been eating raw almonds like crazy and plan on making the cookies as soon as I can get my hands on some brewer's yeast (easier said than done around here). I am also making some lentil soup today or tomorrow.

I slept in yesterday morning and plan on doing the same today - I'm pumping currently. The babies will hopefully cooperate with my plans (ha). I envision geisars predictably popping off every few hours while pumping - I think about being able to shoot milk up to 30 feet like my breastfeeding books warn. I picture fast flowing streams - well I was but all it did was make me have to go to the bathroom so that meditation is out. Point is, I'm doing everything I can think of - or that anyone else can think of - to provide these little ones with some sort of immune system especially through this critical time of year.

Mary Louise had her hearing checked again yesterday. Her ear canals had grown but are still not quite large enough for the full test. A preliminary screening was done and both ears passed "beautifully" according to the audiologist. She said she doesn't see any reason for concern and asked that I come back in 3 weeks to try the full test again. She was quite the character while there - smiling, tooting (that is one gasy little girl when she gets going- but she doesn't seem to mind). Then she started jumping. She's been at it for the last few days - she loves to bounce in my lap and "dance" and jump. I call it Mary Louise gymnastics. If I put her in a sitting position, she busies herself moving her arms back and forth while kicking her legs. It almost looks as if she's tap dancing while sitting down. It's hilarious - she bobs her little head to her silent beat and goes to town. Everyone at the audiologist's office thought she was just the most wonderful thing they'd ever seen! (I can't say I disagree of course).

David is progressing at his own pace as well. This morning (it is a day later - I started this post yesterday), after he'd had some of his feeding, he stopped sucking, looked up at me with his furrowed brow and softened his face and smiled. I've been waiting for him to try that. It was amazing - one of the most beautiful sites I've ever seen. A genuine smile from my little boy! He is also picking his head up a little further and turning it from side to side more often. Last night, he stayed awake for a bit and played in Brent's lap - no crying, just fiddling with his blanket and Brent's hands and his little Wubbanub.

Both of our little ones are consistently making eye contact now. Mary Louise tracks side to side and up and down, David tracks side to side and has done up and down a few times - but at a separate time (he doesn't like to do all 4 directions at once). They also both consistently "help to hold" their bottles while feeding; and I have been working with them on breastfeeding as well. They are getting a bit better at holding a latch on. I can breastfeed for a little while then supplement with the bottle.

I am glad someone said something about the feeding amount staying the same - they have been at a little over 3 ounces per feeding for awhile now and show no signs of wanting more. They also eat more in the afternoons, less at night - is that typical? I realized how much we were wasting and wanted to tailor their regimens a bit better and that's what I found. I suppose it doesn't matter as long as they are gaining weight over all. Home Health comes today to give David his first shot for RSV and weigh and check on Mary Louise so we'll see what they say. (She got her first shot last week and did remarkably well.)

Another question - I'm wondering if anyone has heard about Synagist helping to protect again the regular flu? The home health nurse said it did but I've never heard that before and I can't find the information anywhere - the company certainly doesn't claim that. I suppose it is an anti-viral but I thought it was specific to RSV. No matter either way, the little ones are too young and too small for the flu vaccines - Brent and I and visiting family members are getting them in the hopes of offering some protection.

Thank you so much for allowing me a moment of panic - every once in awhile (or everyday - whatever - semantics...)I just need to have a melt down, pick myself up again, and regroup. I do believe I got my first grey hair with my drop in supply though. Ha - I'm sure it won't be my last.


sep 2009


  1. I have not heard that synagis protects against regular flu... I need to get on top of that since we are supposed to be getting that this winter too.

    info about feeding amounts:

    also if you are breastfeeding some, that could be your "missing" milk? positive thinking right?

    As for the feeding amounts... I obsess and I try to be "economical" with the juice since I work so hard for it. I find that my daughter eats more in the later afternoon, and less at night and in the morning. We also did the cluster feeding thing in the evening, a bottle about every 2 hours from 4-7/8pm(bediome). Your babies will probably change over time with how much they eat and when and as they stretch out to longer periods between feedings. I find keeping a log helps, even though it seems a bit crazy. I figured out that my daughter was always ready to go at 7am no matter what transpired all night long. It was good for establishing a eating/nap schedule. She was an hour up and 2 down (the 3 hour schedule), and now she is on a 4 hour routine. good naps during the day helped me to get more hours at night from her, that magical sleep from 10/11- 5am, and finally all the way to 7am. I have not gotten motivated enough to wake up to pump yet. I am motivated to make those cookies though.

  2. Keep getting them to the breast. It took 4 mths for me to get the kids to latch on & stay latched & they were only 6 wks early.

    Never heard about the RSV shot protecting against the regular flu. We didn't qualify for the shots last year & won't this year.

    One other thing, the frequent eating in the evening is referred to as "cluster feeding" & it is their way of filling up to be able to sleep longer overnight. It is a GOOD thing ;).