Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Long time, no post

Wow, it's been a whirlwind around here for the last 6 weeks. Alex's birth was amazing and beautiful. We are truly blessed to have a wonderful son and the girls are thrilled with their little brother.

Every time a mama brings home a baby, there are always learning curves. Each baby is special and unique and comes with his/her own challenges. For whatever reason, my milk supply has been questionable this time around and without cause. With Charlotte, because of a placental abruption during delivery that led to a large amount of blood loss and pituitary damage, I had some supply issues that were only complicated by her nipple confusion from being bottlefed in the nursery at the hospital. So we had a steep hill to climb with her but after some intense work, by about 7 weeks all was well. I never had any problems with nursing Sarah except for an occasional bout of thrush. So I was expecting everything to go smoothly with Alex since his delivery was DREAMY!

But alas, that was not in the cards. He lost a little weight in the hospital and continued losing weight after we brought him home, despite my nursing him every 2 hours around the clock. He also had to be hospitalized for jaundice and that definitely DIDN'T help. He was very sleepy and keeping him awake long enough to nurse effectively was a real feat. So it was no wonder he wasn't gaining weight.

By 9 days old, he was down to 6lbs, 15oz after weighing in at 8lbs 1.6oz at birth. That's a pretty significant drop, I know. So I rented a hospital grade pump and got a prescription for Reglan to increase my supply in the short-term. All of a sudden, he started gaining weight.

The ideal weight gain for a breastfed baby is 4-7 ounces/week. For the last couple of weeks, Alex has been gaining about an ounce/day. I weighed him yesterday while we were at the pediatrican for Charlotte's 4-year well check and he weighed 8lbs, 15oz which is 11 ounces in 12 days. So I'm okay with that. He's scheduled for his 2-month check in about 3 weeks so I'm hoping he'll be over 10 pounds then.

I also saw a new doctor to look into the possibility of a thyroid issue that could be causing this weird supply problem. Maybe something got messed up after Charlotte's birth that never really corrected itself? Maybe I lost more blood during Alex's birth than I thought? Maybe there's something I'm missing? I'm all set for blood work this upcoming Thursday to investigate these matters. In the meantime, today is my last day of my second Reglan prescription. According to the lactation consultant, Reglan can be used three times so I think I have only one more go-round with it before I won't be able to take it anymore. Apparently the side effects can be really bad but I've had none of those. I also go on Thursday for my 6-week postpartum followup. I plan to talk extensively about this supply issue and figure out what's going on. The problem is, most doctors think it's no big deal to get over it and bottle feed. But after I nursed Sarah for 13 months and Charlotte for 18 months, it's not easy (or really an option in my opinion) to give up on Alex. So I'm keeping at it in hopes of straightening everything out and enjoying a long breastfeeding relationship with my new boy.

Alex is a wonderful baby. He doesn't cry very much, he's been a great sleeper since his first night home, and he's very snuggly. He started smiling this past weekend but he's still pretty selective about to whom he flashes that toothless grin. I'm sure he'll be more generous with those as he gets older. He's spending much more time awake these days and is very observant. I am so looking forward to watching him grow and develop as the years pass.

I promise to update more often now that we have computer issues resolved. My computer bit the dust and Andy had to work some "computer guy" magic to retrieve my information for loading onto his machine.

1 comment:

Janelle said...

Well, I'm glad to hear you're going to update more frequently :)

You're doing amazing with your nursing-not everyone would be able to push through and make it work so I admire your dedication! You're an excellent mama! I hope you find some answers though so it will put your mind at ease.

I'm so happy to hear he is gaining, I love a chubby baby!!