Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Difficult Decisions...

I've come to a very difficult decision...I've decided to stop nursing. It might not be a big deal to some people, but it wasn't an easy decision for me to make..nursing is incredibly bonding and knowing that my body produces what my baby needs to sustain her is, likewise, incredibly fulfilling! ...but it's just not working any more. It started with Aloria becoming a boob snob...she would only take my right side. To keep from becoming incredibly lopsided (the more you nurse the more you produce...the less, etc...) I had to lay her down on my bed and nurse from different directions so that she could turn her head the way she liked. If that wasn't annoying enough, she began to want to nurse, in general, less and less. I was down to one feeding in the middle of the day, the rest were early morning and in the middle of the night... I want her to sleep through the night, but was afraid that if I did that she wouldn't get the right amount of milk feedings in her 24 hour period (something like 5 to 7 depending on how much they drink at once). I tried to feed her more than once during the day, but she would just push me away.

Soooo...with my left side producing next to nothing, my first idea was to start pumping from that side only, and let her nurse exclusively from my right...and then try and get her to take the bottle sometimes during the day. Haha...her latest thing is to push me away with her hand while nursing and pulling away from me with her head as far as she can get without letting go...it's like she can't make up her mind. That was it! I wasn't about to take measures to produce milk for a baby that I had to take measures to try and get to eat!!! It would be an endless battle, to say the least. Sooo, I've decided to switch to formula. This makes me sad, because I wanted to nurse until she was at least a year old...and so it sort of makes me feel like a failure. At least at first! I talked with a lady at church who had the same problem, switched to formula, and all good things have come of it! ...and so, I will just go with the flow...life doesn't always hand us what we want, but that's okay, because the Lord always supplies us with what we need.

I made this decision final over this weekend when Aloria got sick. She had 103 temp. and lost her appetite...and I lost whatever milk supply I had. ...but it's not just that. Even with the switch, I still have my work cut out for me. Since giving her bottles, I can moniter exactly how many ounces she eats at once...a whopping 2 flipping ounces! For you who don't know...this is nowhere near the 6-8 she needs per feeding. She's what they call a grazer or a snacker. She likes to eat less but more often. This isn't really a good schedule for me though because she's not eating enough to keep her satisfied through the night. ...and this is my goal.

So, with all of these challenges before me, I can't help but think that I've been doing something or everything all wrong... Did our original feeding schedule cause her to snack instead of eat a full helping? Should I let her cry herself to sleep even though she hasn't eaten enough? Will the fact that she is starving when she wakes up make her eat more? I'm not sure of any of these questions...but I need to figure them out for my own sanity, if nothing else. Aloria needs to eat more and she needs to sleep through the night. The end! How, I get there will be this week's projects...and perhaps next weeks as well.

From her end, she is happy and healthy, and doesn't understand why I keep pushing the bottle in her face or the big deal with waking up all night...she does, what's wrong with me?! What's wrong with me indeed! That is the question of the day.


mrs bodeutsch said...

please change your font color, it is hard to read!!

Rainbow said...

Ohhh, what a hard decision! I'm sorry it worked out that way :(

About sleeping through the night with vinnie anyway, she eats the least at her 10 am and pm feedings. We did have to train her that she gets to eat when we feed her, not just whenever, but since then she has been eating little at her last and first feedings, and eating a bunch at her other daytime feedings.

Vinnie is still nursing pretty exclusively though, so I have NO IDEA how to work sleeping in with solids. I have no idea how to work solids into our schedule at all...