"But as for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. My mouth will tell of your righteousness, of your salvation all day long, though I know not its measure." Psalm 71:14-15

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Levi you are FIVE months old!

I can't believe my baby is 5 months old! You are turning into such a sweet, cool little person. You are very happy all the time. You love people and will let anyone hold you (which I appreciate when it's time to drop you off at school). This weekend was your first Labor Day Party and Grandma and Grandad's house and you were the star of the show. You let Grandma take you all over the place and meet lots of new people and you never cried once about being away from us. You really are an easy baby!

The Labor Day Party was also our first game day!! We lost this one by 1 point, but we've got lots to build on.

You loved the music!

You love the animals, and Einstein loves you back... not sure about the girls. Isis did love on you the other day until you pulled her tail! Hurley is STILL mad that you took away her Mama and every time you try to pet her, she steps out of your reach.

Your new trick is sitting up! You aren't very good at staying up for a long time, but you can sit up for 20-30 seconds at a time, sometimes longer if you prop yourself up on your arms. You are scooting all over your crib, inchworm style. You don't use your arms, you push with your legs and use your forehead to hold you up. It's SO funny.

Sitting up like a big boy!

We started giving you cereal and you really seem to like it this time. You try to take the spoon away from us! We tried giving it to you a few times when you were 4 months old and you were not ready. You got MAD actually :) I think we are going to try solids soon once you get the hang of cereal.

I measured you about a week ago and you were 26" long! We are looking at big boy car seats, because you will probably outgrow the infant seat in length long before you reach the weight limit. I weighed you about a week ago and you weighed 15lbs 1oz.

Here you are eating your "5 months" sign...

That sweet face melts my heart!

You are a very sweet and cuddly baby boy! You remind me of another little boy that's not so little anymore... SNIFF

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The End is Near

No I'm not talking about the East Coast Earthquake, hurricane Irene or any other of the natural disasters that have folks beating down the doors of their local church for fear of the Apocalypse. I'm talking about my breastfeeding journey. My heart is absolutely breaking into pieces as I write this.

As I've said before, breastfeeding was by far the most important thing for me to do for my baby and the one part of being a mother that I looked forward to most. As my 4 regular readers know, it has been anything but an easy journey. Hell, it hasn't even been a bumpy road. It's been an all out mud-crawling-military-obstacle-course-fit-for-a-movie (think Officer and a Gentlemen). After trying everything under the sun to get a full milk supply to come in, I finally came to peace with the fact that I would be a part-time breastfeeder. We had a schedule that worked for us and I really was happy with it, if I couldn't breastfeed exclusively. I had enough to feed Levi any middle of the night feedings, and 2 early morning feedings (around 6 and 8am). These are the least convenient times of day for me to deal with bottles, so really I couldn't complain. He had a supplemental bottle for his 11:30, 3:00 and 6:00 feedings after I breastfed him. And I pumped once after he went to bed, before I retired. This schedule worked for us for a good 2.5 months or so.

I started noticing last week a slight decrease in what I was pumping during the day at work. I had been pumping around 2 oz each session, meaning I was making between 2 and 3 oz per feeding. Levi started pulling off and throwing his head back and whining and fussing during recent feedings, I now know it's because I'm not producing as much milk as I used to. On Tuesday my monthly visitor returned. This is bad news. It means that since going back to work, the breast pump is not doing a good enough job getting milk out to keep my prolactin hormone levels high enough to keep my period away. The more the prolactin levels fall, the less milk I make and the more likely that my visitor will stay. In just two short days my production has plummeted. I don't even think I have enough to get him full in the morning without a bottle now. I barely have anything to give him and he is getting frustrated with the process.

I'm not greedy. Sure I wanted to breastfeed exclusively, but I gave up on that months ago. I just wanted to keep going as we were as long as he and I still wanted to, at least a year. This is all happening so fast. It's so sudden, so early, I'm just not ready for it. My heart is absolutely breaking. I'm hurting in a deeper place than I ever knew my soul to go. I can't feed my baby. My body was made to do this and it continues to fail me at every turn. I try to remind myself that I am grateful. I'm grateful for the medical advancements of the last century. 100 years ago, I wouldn't have a son now. He would have died months ago of starvation. I know that. But it still doesn't take away the pain I feel in this very deep place. I just want to feed my baby. I JUST WANT TO FEED MY BABY!! I want to feed my baby and I can't and I feel like I'm being punished for something I didn't do. This feels so unfair.

Well-meaning friends and medical professionals tell me it will be better next time, my next breastfeeding experience will be a breeze, it will be better with the next baby. That's great, but I'm not trying to feed the next baby. I'm not holding and consoling the next baby. I'm not looking into the frustrated hungry face of the next baby who just wants to nurse and get milk. Nope, I just want to feed THIS baby. We'll worry about the next one when s/he gets here.

I realize I'm a control freak, but why did it have to be this. Why was THIS the avenue to teach me some stupid lesson about letting go, blah blah blah. There's nothing I can do to MAKE my body make milk. And that's just the end of it. Just like that. It's gone and I can't do anything to get it back.