I know. I’m alive. Really.
The last three weeks have been difficult. Being a parent is…challenging to say the least, especially if you have no clue what you are doing. Thank goodness for friends like @cazpi who has been a lifesaver. She has been super supportive and helpful and has come out to take care of us at the drop of a hat. She has opened her home to us when we needed her. She has proven to be a great friend. Big love to you Caz!
When we took Babyice for his 2 week check up the clinic sister was dubious about his weight gain. She was unsure as she wasn’t the last sister to weigh him and didn’t know what he had been weighed in (we couldn’t remember if she had kept his nappy on or not, I think she did). She said he might not be latching on correctly and may only be getting foremilk from my breast, not the hindmilk like he should be getting. So his thirst is being quenched, but he might not be getting sustenance as such.
We went and bought ingredients for jungle juice and nipple shields to try and help. We also bought formula just in case. That night he wouldn’t stop screaming. He was crying the entire time. We decided to top him up with some formula as a once off to see if he ate enough. He gulped down the formula and went to sleep. From the next feed we were back on the breast and by the next day he started crying again. Eventually I was in tears and couldn’t stop crying myself. Caz rushed over and offered to take us in for a couple of nights to see if she could help. The next day she took me to her clinic sister. What a wonderful woman! She helped me latch properly and gave me some advice. She also gave me some free samples! Because of her free samples we figured out that Babyice prefers Avent to NUK. Perfect! We went and bought a breast pump as well, in case.
He did okay that night, after having some more formula. I pumped some breast milk so that my breasts would think he is feeding when we were giving him formula and we came home the next day. The weekend went okay feeding on the breast only, but by Sunday night he was screaming again. For one particular feed I was feeding him for two hours on the breast and he still wasn’t satisfied. I tried both and made sure we were latching correctly. I reverted to the bottle and BOOM. Hunger satisfied, sleeping baby.
It was then that I realized that I needed to make a decision. I was torturing myself and him with the breastfeeding and he clearly wasn’t getting enough food.
I was gutted. I had my heart set on breastfeeding my baby. It is what is best for them and I wanted to do it for at least six months, but it just wasn’t working for us. I beat myself up over it. Suffered with painful breasts while I tossed and turned over the decision…but I needed to make up my mind and I needed to decide what is best for our family and for our baby. I spoke to Rudi and we decided that we would switch him to formula.
He has been on formula since Monday and he is a completely different baby. He is much happier, sleeps better, his nappies are looking much better and we’re both much more relaxed. Now that I know he is well fed I’m not constantly worried about him being hungry. If he is crying I know it is because he has a wind/needs to be changed/needs a cuddle and isn’t screaming because he is not satisfied. We have another clinic visit today (they wanted to keep an eye on him) and I’m sure he would have done a lot better this week!
I know that a lot of women feel very strongly about this and will probably want to burn me at the stake, but I tried my best. I really did. After telling my grandmother this morning that we’d decided to change him to formula she said ‘Yes. Nobody in our family has ever been able to successfully breastfeed’. NOW she tells me. Although, that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t have been able to.
Now we’re settling in to our new pattern and things are going much better!
Babyice had a newborn shoot the other day (above picture from the shoot as well). Wanna see? Check out some of the photos on @cazpi’s blog here.
As soon as I get my maternity shoot pictures from Johannesburg and gotten his newborn shoot pics I’ll upload albums to Facebook from Baby Shower to Newborn shoot for you all to see 🙂