Saturday, August 17, 2013

Why does it have to be so hard??

My friend had her baby today!  She is just about the only person that I've been genuinely happy for when she announced her pregnancy.  She was a few days overdue and everyone was anxiously awaiting the arrival of her baby boy!  I must have had a "feeling" because I texted her asking if it was "baby time" yet right about the time she actually had him!  She texted me back about an hour after.

Brian asked me today if I was going to go see her today at the hospital and I started bawling my eyes out.  I had already been thinking about this before he asked me and I guess I just lost it when the thought finally really crossed my mind.

Let's just start by saying that I think breastfeeding is awesome.  My friend plans to BF until she goes back to work when the baby is about 8 weeks old.  We talked at length a few weeks ago about what to expect, how it feels, how to tell if he's getting enough, what to do if he might be tongue tied, no pacifiers in the hospital, no bottles until 3-4 weeks,breast pumps, pumping at work, all of that.  I even gave her some of my disposable breast pads that I never used because I never have any leaking problems.

I'm happy that she's making the decision to BF, because I think that everybody should at least give it a shot.  But, here's my problem:  with all of my struggles, Oliver not latching, sometimes being rejected by Elliott, I just don't think I would be sharing in her happiness seeing her feed her baby.  I really want to see her, and see her new baby boy, but I'm just not sure how I would react if it was feeding time.  Maybe she wouldn't want company while she was feeding anyways, but as we all know, newborns eat super often and there's a good chance it would happen while I was there.  She is pretty much my closest friend and I can't ignore her for 8 weeks, so I'm not really sure what I'm going to do.

I've spent a good portion of my day crying and I feel so dumb for doing it!  I know that I am giving my boys what I can, but I just beat myself up over the fact that I can't give them more.  Oliver had his tongue tie fixed, but I still can't get him to latch and I can only feed him at the breast if I do all the work for him and literally squirt the milk in his mouth by manual expression.  He probably isn't really getting that much that way either so he's still hungry.  Elliott loves to breastfeed in the morning, but other times of the day are questionable.  Sometimes he wants the boob and sometimes not!

The frustrating thing with pumping is that you feel like a slave to the stupid thing.  I've said it before, but its like I pump and then start the 3 hour countdown until the next time.  This is becoming a problem since we have been attempting to get out more.  I've been going to the park, and it would be so much easier to just whip out a boob, than bring bottles.  The other day when we went, Elliott was crying so I thought, okay.... I'll just feed you and that will be that.  I was there with the mom that I just met and she had BFed her baby, so I felt comfortable BFing around her.  Well, Elliott had other plans.  He would not latch.  Just wasn't having any of it.  I tried both sides and our usual "football hold" that he likes the best but he just wouldn't.  In the meantime, Char stole the one bottle I did bring with and drank the whole thing.  Great.  I felt so embarrassed!  I was rejected by my own baby! It would be different if we were at home and I could just go heat him up a bottle or whatever, but we weren't... and I didn't have any other options.  He must have got a few sips to tide him over because he stopped crying, but he still needed to be fed when we got home.

I'm taking all of the kids to the zoo by myself next week and I really hate having to worry about "when's the next time I need to pump??" It would just be so much easier to feed Elliott myself and not have to worry about it.  I don't want to have to leave because I feel guilty about not pumping either.  I'm meeting up with a friend that lives on the opposite side of town, so we don't get together often and I really look forward to catching up with her!

I think that ultimately I need to decide which makes me happier.... pumping and getting more, or losing a few pumps and breastfeeding more.  I just need to make sure I split up the liquid gold between the boys, and not just give Elliott more because he breastfeeds... so I can't ditch the pump all together.

Here's my thought:  I wonder if I can try pumping 2x/day and BFing Elliott the rest of the day (if he will have it).  I can wake up, bottle feed Oliver, BF Elliott and then pump.  I usually get 8-10 oz after I BF.  Then, the rest of the day I can just BF Elliott on demand and not worry about pumping afterwards.  He might be happier if I'm more full.  Then, I can pump after I have put the boys to sleep and before I go to sleep.  I have NO idea what this would do to my supply, but it might be worth a shot.  We will see.


Amanda said...

Be kind to yourself. You are doing a great job!

Sara-Lynn said...

Oh that sounds tough, but you are doing so well thinking of your babies needs. I am guessing for you, that acknowledging how you are feeling towards your friend may help you to be more free to celebrate with her. I hope (and think) it will be easier than you think now that you have expressed it.

AletaObrien said...

You're going to find the balance that you need with bf'ing and pumping. I feel for you. I was doing the same for a short period of time and it's HARD. Bless you!

I wish there were cyber hugs... for the times when your emotions are tangled up. Just know that you have friends and we support you!