My Nursing and Pumping How to Revelations

I’ve spent countless hours googling whatever burning question I had about sustaining the life of my newest offspring.  Because in 5 years, I had mostly forgotten exactly how to keep a new human alive.  I mean having a baby is all fun and games until you’re trying to establish a good milk supply, getting said baby to sleep for a decent chunk of time, and ensuring your body is keeping up with her growing calorie needs.  

When I first had her, I was pretty cocky right up until they pulled her out and set her on me all squishy and slippery.  I mean walking into the OR I was like, “psshhht, been there and done that.  I even fed twins and still donated ridiculous amounts.  I’ve got this.”  But as soon as her wiggly, tiny, and slippery body was clinging to mine, all prior knowledge and confidence flew out of the room.  Back to square one.  

I remembered enough to start pumping after every time she nursed.  Even if nothing was coming out I pumped like a soldier for 10 minutes.  Every two hours.  These are the two “know hows” my mind hung onto.  Which is baffling now that I think about how many hours I’ve been tethered to the pump in the last 7 years of my like.  I’m pretty sure I have I’ve spent more quality time with the Medela than I have my spouse.  I digress…

So anytime I felt I wasn’t producing enough, or the baby wasn’t sleeping for long enough, or she was acting weird, or nursing shorter/longer I would grab the phone and call my mom while googling the issue at the same time.  (Enter the budding addiction to my phone)  Mostly I was looking for a real life example.  Someone who had written it down TO THE T what they did, when they did it, for how long they did it, and why they did it, then how doing that worked!  And ya know, in the vast chasm of Google, I never found what I was looking for.  

So I’m here putting down my story for those late night, panic driven mommas looking for someone’s tale of what worked for them.  

Newborn Feeding Stats

Nursed every.two.hours during the daytime hours (6am-10pm)  I would feed her on one side for about 10 minutes, burp, then repeat on the other side.  

Pumped for 3-8 minutes immediately after each feeding.  After Every Feeding!

My milk came in the first night in the hospital so I really got strict about pumping after each time she ate.  I started out getting about 2-3 oz each pumping.  Also I had to keep stripping her clothes off and rubbing her back to keep her awake to eat.  During those first 2-3 days I fed her On Demand (which up until this kid I had no idea what On Demand even was.)

Sleeping Stats

I sorta used some “babywise” methods, but sort of not.  I would nurse her right when she woke up and she would stay awake for about 35-40 minutes then back to bed she went.  And would sleep for an hour-1.5 hours.  I never let her go more than two hours in between the times she ate.  So even if she was sound asleep, if she ate last at 9 am, I’d be waking her up at 11.  This was my key to getting her to sleep at night.  Fitting all her feedings in during the day.  It was super hard waking her up as she was snoozing oh so peacefully, but mamacita wanted to snooze oh so peacefully at midnight, thus squashing the hesitation to let a sleeping babe sleep.  Helpful tip:Strip that baby naked if needs be to get them to wake up and eat. 

2mo-4mo

Nursing:  I kept the babe on the rigid every 2 hour nursing schedule during the day. She got faster at each feeding only taking about 15 min total.  

Pumping:  I pumped after every feeding still and during her long nap.  I also pumped right before I went to sleep and once at like 5am-ish before she woke up.  I was getting about 68-70oz extra every day and wanted to keep up my supply which is why I kept up with the nightly pumping.  Plus it is just suuuuuuper uncomfortable to sleep with full milk jugs.  

Sleeping  She would sleep from about 6pm-7:30am.  She would stay awake for about 45 min then go right back to sleep for an hour.   Around noon she would take a good 2-3 hour nap(we were always changing what time of day this was because of the older kids demanding us changing up the schedule all the time). 

The result?  

She started sleeping from 11-5:30 when she was 5 days old.  And has since slept through the night for 14+ hours.  

9mo-12mo

At 9 months old Sadie sleeps 10-12 hours a night.  She nurses about 5 times a day still and eats some real food a few times a day.  I didn’t start her on “food” until she was 8 months old.  Mostly because I’m a lazy beast and didn’t want the extra mess or preparation.  Whippin out the tit is sooooo much easier.  I only pumped now before bed and right when I woke up.  Sometimes I would in the middle of the day if She was taking a longer than normal nap.  Lt it be known that at this time, my bra size started to go down.  And yes…tears were shed. 

18+mo

I weaned her on the night of her 1st birthday.  I stopped pumping about a week later and it took me 2 full weeks to dry up.  She still sleeps 12-14 hours a night and now only takes one 2-3 hour nap a day.  

I gave her a sippy cup of whole organic milk on her birthday and she’s been on that ever since.  Since she’s never had it in a bottle, we don’t have to break that habit.  But she is addicted to her pacifiers so I anticipate lots of fights in about 6 months.  

 

I hope this helps some of those moms out there searching through the wee hours of the morning for some guidance, assurance or example.  I’m on the other side now, trying to tame the disaster havoc-reeking escape artist, missing those quiet mornings and afternoons spent in the rocking chair with the bitty baby.  

 

 

Posted in Home, Mommavation Mondays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

So that makes me an expert right?

So it seems like this is a popular question in the obstetrics and hormonal world.  “What is your birth plan?”  I giggled a wee bit when my Dr. asked me.  I’m sure my smart aleck response didn’t win me any bedside manner points, but I couldn’t resist.  

Me:  “Umm, to get her out.”    

Dr:  (Insert awkward laugh)”Ha, true, but do you have any specific instructions you’d like us to follow?”  

Me:  (Blankly staring, unsure if this is a trick question or not.)

Dr:  “Any specific requests?”

Me:  (Again a blank look, thinking holy cow she’s serious.  Should I have done some homework???  Have things changed since I did this last time????  I should have instructions???)

Dr: (Now she begins to blankly stare and mentally question if I’m a glue eater)

After some painful moments of uncomfortable eye contact, we moved on to the exam, pretending the awkward moment never happened and never brought up the topic again.  The whole drive home I thought about her question.  Since when does the patient tell the Dr. how to do their job?  What requests could I possibly give the doctor to have a “peaceful” delivery.  Last time I checked, childbirth was a laborious part of life that the baby never ever remembers.  Um hello???  Genesis 3:16 a’ringin a bell?  

“Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children”

Peaceful for the mom?  I mean they know where the baby exits right?  And I don’t think there is anything peaceful about that.  Peaceful for the baby?  My 6 year old doesn’t always remember to wipe her butt.  Safe to say a newborn is not going to remember if Josh Groban was singing in the background as she was being extracted from the nether regions.  I definitely didn’t go to med school, nor have I performed surgery.  So why the heck would I tell the nurses and Doctors how to do their jobs?  Yet this seems to be the new trend.  

Now hats off to you water-birthing, anit-epidural wonder moms out there who are popping youngungs out like skittles while you’re scrolling through your insta-feed, sippin on coconut water.  You are better women than I.  If there’s a pain free option, sign me up!  I’m all about as little discomfort as possible!  

But it really throws me how warped our mind thinking has become.  One person reads a facebook post on the new most “natural” thing for a baby is to be “seeded.”  As in when a baby is coming out via the slice and dice method, take a paintbrush, dip it in the mom’s hooha juices and paint up that kid so it’s more “natural.”  Sorry…nope.  My kids will most likely need therapy for all the screw ups I’ve done as a parent, but that’s one they’re not going to be able to throw in my face.  You’re welcome Sadie…you are seed-free.  I saw this and was telling my mom (who is a 29 year Labor and Delivery nurse) and asking if she’s heard of this and all she could do was laugh and say gross.  And for a woman who spends her days in the down and under of fully gestated strangers, it must really be gross!   

I  love/hate the openness and transparency that is happening in today’s age.  I love the fact that things like mental illness recognition, stressed out mom acceptance, the lowering of the “perfect body” standard, and caloric contents printed on menus are becoming part of our normal society.  But when it becomes accepted that we become the boss simply because we are a consumer, have read an article on the internet or are a disgruntled minority member, I thumbs down that all the way.  I enjoy knowing my doctor is 100% capable of handling any situation I have and being able to tell me what the best thing “medically” to do is.  I’m PAYING her to be the expert so I expect her to expertly direct me.  

So as I’m stepping down from my soapbox, I’ll end with this.  As much as we try to flower and fluff childbirth, that’s what it is.  Birthing a child.  Leave your instruction manuals for the doctor at home.

Happy Monday

Posted in Home, Mommavation Mondays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Birthday ‘Merica!!πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡ΈπŸŽ‰

Hope everyone enjoys their day off and remembers those who have fought so hard for our freedom.  Happy 4th of July!!πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ

image

Posted in Home | Leave a comment

TIUBS1 Wrap

For those who arent’ into acronyms, that stands for Tone It Up Bikini Series Week 1.  The first week, when motivation and willpower at are at their peak, things are pleasant to report!  And since we’re still in week one, things are good. Had 2 slip ups on my nutrition plan, but nailed the workouts this week and got my daily water goal in. Had a fantastic  workout on Wed with the lover and the littlest hiking at the falls.  Since he’s on the slimdown train too, it’s a lot easier to add those cardio miles with a mutual suffering companion.  

(null) (1)

 (null) We got lots of walks to the park in and a couple of bike rides. IMG_3509

All day zoo adventures really wear a kid outIMG_3523
Walks to the river with the neighborhood crewIMG_3527 image

Posted in Exercise, Home | Leave a comment

TIU Bikini Series Week 1

Week 1 here we go. I’ve got my meals prepped, menus planned and workouts scheduled.  Aside from my physical goals, this week I’m going to focus on

  1. Getting 100 oz of H2O a day
  2. Walk at least 2 miles/day
  3. Do 2 yoga classes
  4. No nightime snacking

callingallbombshells4

#tiuteam #tiumama #liftingandlactating #tiubikiniseries 

Posted in Exercise, NU16 | Leave a comment

Tone It Up Bikini Series 2

Here it is folks, my very public declaration that I’m committing to the Tone It Up Bikini Series for the summer. It’s an 8 week program with daily workouts, weekly goals and challenges and a free 8 week meal plan included. I’ve been a member since 2012, but haven’t completed one of their challenges start to finish yet. But I’ve got major motivation and a committed buddy to finish it strong with me. I’m going to reeeeaaaallly try to post weekly progress to help keep me on track. If you’d like to join the bandwagon with us just click here!  

tone-it-up-bikini-series-404

#tiuteam #tiumama #tiubinikiseries #liftingandlactating 

Posted in Exercise, Home, NU16 | Leave a comment

Past the Plague

This winter is going down in the books as the WORST one we’ve had bar none!  Anything that the kids could have brought home and shared with the family they did…2 and 3 times over.  Cheers to hitting the family yearly deductible by March!  The baby has been the only one to claim immunity throughout it all.  PTL I’m glad for that, but I’m beyond ready to look at this cold/flu season in my rear view mirror with the windows open!  
019 026

We’ve got one kid on the roster for tonsil and adenoid eviction and I’m praying that is the key to breaking our record.  She seems to be the favorite host for incubating.  
038 051 055 059 066 092

So while we’re on round 143,475 of nursing a sicko, we’ve got our eyes on the spring break prize of sunshine and fresh air and healthy kids!094

Posted in Home | Leave a comment

How bout a solid NO!

I stole this from a facebook friend and it was something I had to adopt for my own always-compelled-to-say-yes-to-everything flaw.

“If it’s not a HECK YES, then it’s a no.”

So that medium yes, that I-feel-like-should yes, that guilty yes, that coerced yes, that I-actually-hate-this-thing yes, that I-guess-so yes, that who-else-will-do-it yes, that careless yes, that default yes, that resentful yes, that I-probably-shouldn’t-but-struggle-with-boundaries yes?

snl no kristen wiig bill hader nope

NO. Nope.

No thank you. I am unable to commit to that this year. Thank you so much for asking, but any new yes I give right now means a no to my family and my sanity. I am so flattered you asked and count on my prayers, but I am at my maximum bandwidth right now. I appreciate your work so much, but I’ve already committed my time and energy this year. 

Now, the things that make your heart race, your blood pump, the fire in your belly burn, your gifts to leap to life, and keep your family and home healthy and strong…then ABSOLUTELY Yes!!”

So sorry sting B’rs and those that didn’t make the cut.  Maybe in future years when my life circumstances change and our focus isn’t so much on keeping small children alive then maybe yes, but I’d go ahead and be prepared for a solid No.

Posted in Home | Leave a comment

Happy Birthday Girls

Well, it’s just weird that the twins are 7.  I still remember when one of my NICU nurses was trying to encourage me and said, “Sarah, you’re going to blink and these two babies will be celebrating their 7th birthday, and you’ll be worrying about homework and whether or not they’ve brushed their teeth after breakfast.  You’ll survive the next few weeks just like you’ll survive that.  Everything is a season with each one tougher and better than the last.”  

And here we are, they are turning 7 and my life is filled with getting homework down and emphasizing personal hygiene.  Joe was right, the seasons have gone fast and they each get harder and better all at the same time.  

Happy birthday goofballs!

 

Posted in Family & Memories | Leave a comment

Eye Candy

I love my kids.  And I love taking pictures of my kids.  And I love showing of how cute said kids are.  However, I’m not so organized to put said pics up for viewing. And unless you have an instagram account and following me then you’re probably a wee bit behind on the kids cuteness.

Friday night movie nights when dad's on night shift

Friday night movie nights when dad’s on night shift

image image image

 image image image image

image

 

Posted in Home | Leave a comment