Wednesday, August 21, 2013

posterior tongue tie - part 2

A week after Elmer's revision, his improvements seemed significant to me. I decided to wean him off the supplements. I decided if I just nursed him more - i'd have to pump less - and so I pumped less and less and nursed more and more - till I was nursing almost constantly. Within a couple of days, I realized that he wasn't pooping or peeing like he had been. He quit sleeping any longer chunks and was constantly fussing and rooting. I realized quickly that I needed to start pumping again, but those couple of days wreaked havoc on my supply *again* and I had to build it with constant pumping and nursing yet again. I finally awkwardly managed to figure out pumping and nursing at the same time to save some time - and as my supply returned, I found myself grateful that at least I *had* milk - even with the other trouble, I was grateful that it really could be so much worse.
By this time, I was two weeks past his revision... I went back to the dr. to check on his progress - and she confirmed that he was in no way ready to quit the supplements. She also wanted me to stay on the Domperidone - which honestly? It has a side effect that makes it impossible to lose weight - & unless i'm really careful, my body wants to gain weight... I know, I know... vanity... but I still have 10-15lbs leftover from pregnancy... and i'm used to it falling off at a nice pace... This little piece of my vanity makes me uncomfortable & it's not very fun... but... i'm a stubborn mama sometimes, and so the Domperidone stays - and apparently, so does the baby weight -  until we really feel that I can wean off of it... and I guess I can't just yet.
The dr. wanted me to continue pumping like crazy, building up my supply to the point of oversupply to see if it makes it easier for Elmer to nurse.

I also decided to contact Dr. Jack Newman on his website to see if he had any insight into my situation. When you contact him, you have to limit your question to a certain number of characters - and it was really hard to be detailed and brief at the same time. As a result, his answer wasn't as useful as it could maybe have been, but I did take from it a renewed interest in the idea of breast compression. I had been foregoing the breast compressions in favour of the tandem nursing/pumping. I only have 2 hands after all... and I figured if I nursed, I could pump more - and maybe the reverse was true too... But after reading Dr. Newman's response, I rethought my goal. My ultimate goal isn't to pump more - my ultimate goal is to have Elmer solely on the breast - so I decided to go back to breastfeeding with compressions and then pumping after the feed. This seemed to have an almost immediate impact. He was swallowing more at the breast - it was like I was pumping - and instead of going into a bottle, it could go straight into my babe...
The breast compressions were so successful that even though I was terrified to quit pumping for fear i'd have to rebuild my milk supply yet again, I decided to try again. When Elmer was 5 days shy of 2 months, I quit pumping. I weighed him at the beginning and at the end of the trial and he had gained appropriately, so I felt confident to continue as we were and to continue weaning off the Domperidone too. This is a really slow, laborious process. I was on the lowest dosage of 8 pills per day, but even so, you have to wean down 1 pill every 4-5 days and if you notice a drop in supply you have to go back to the last dosage that was working and stay there for 2 weeks before attempting to wean down any further. Needless to say, i'm still in the process of weaning off of it, but honestly? It looks like at 2 months post partum that there's a light at the end of the tunnel & that we've made enough progress to feel pretty normal (we're down to 3 pills per day). This is a huge step considering our doctor felt at his last appointment that his latch was still unorganized and weak - enough so that she didn't feel sure we would ever be able to wean off the domperidone as long as we wanted to continue nursing.
I know that this journey was one that I chose. Other women would have chosen differently - & that is totally cool. I just knew that *I* needed to listen to my mama heart and do everything in my power to make this work. Yes, it was a ton of work - and yes, I wanted to quit several times... especially in the middle of the night when I hadn't slept. Yes, it hurt. A lot. Yes, I got discouraged and wondered if maybe we just weren't going to be able to do this thing...
But i'm so very glad that we were able...
And i'm looking forward to the next months and years of our breastfeeding relationship with tender hope and awed pleasure.


Mindy said...

Such good news! It does my heart good to hear about the progress you and Elmer have made. Blessings for the next stage of the journey!

Carol said...

I was wondering how you were doing - glad to hear things are improving.


Related Posts with Thumbnails