I love you. That is all.
No, that's not all. The comments and emails from yesterday's post made me cry. Of course, realizing we were out of Milano cookies made me cry, but still. This was a good cry. Thank you for all the hugs, support, encouragement and sharing of your own stories.
Things? Much better today.
(Things that have made me cry today, besides the aforementioned Milano situation, which has since been remedied: Jason buying me maxi-pads at the store without blinking an eye, a commercial for antidepressants that featured a dog sitting forlornly by the front door with a tennis ball in his mouth because his owner was too depressed to play with him and the realization that my stretch marks kind of resemble a Doppler image of a Gulf Coast hurricane.)
I met with a different lactation consultant yesterday, and I loved her so much I came very close to hugging her and crying into her pretty, pretty hair. I refrained because I was topless at the time and figured that might be Weird.
(The other L/C is actually someone I think I would like very much under normal circumstances and just had the unfortunate job of seeing me under completely NOT normal circumstances, i.e. the day Florence Fucking Nightingale would have made me cry.)
I was not quite so unhinged today for some reason, and Lactation Consultant version 2.0 asked questions and didn't start talking until I finished answering them, and that was really alll I needed from her.
My milk supply may be inhibited by my history of fibrocystic breast disease and some nasty cyst aspirations that left scar tissue behind. Or my supply may just be ramping up super slowly. Or my boobs might just be retarded.
No matter what, though, she saw that I was miserable on the pump and desperately missing my time nursing Noah immediately told me to NURSE, FOR CHRIST'S SAKE, NURSE.
The first L/C made an assumption that I was crying and miserable because I was in pain from earlier nipple damage and wanted a break from Noah's chomping and figured the pump would be a welcome respite for me, instead of the vile symbol of failure and disappointment that it actually was.
It also didn't help that the pump I came home with yesterday (the Medela Lactina, mine sworn archenemy) fucking chewed my nipples off. "Pump Trauma," the lactation folks call it.
"Pumping should feel good." L/C v.2.0 told me. I snorted and yanked up my top to display the crunchy burnt toast points that now serve as my nipples. She may have fainted, just a little.
Anyway. I came home from the appointment with a new pump (the Medela Symphony, my reluctant ally) and a new plan. I breastfeed Noah every two and a half hours for 10 minutes on each side, then pump for 10 minutes while Jason bottlefeeds him formula and any expressed milk I produce.
(Hello, male readers! I assume you'll all be going now. Please come back, I promise to find something more interesting to talk about at some point.)
It's heaven. I get my time with the boy (who is a CHAMPION latcher and sucker, if I may brag, and I will, because at this age the only thing you really CAN brag about is their ability to crap their pants or suck on a boob), Jason gets to participate in the feedings, and I feel less pressure to nurse for ages and ages to ensure that he's getting enough.
I'm taking fenugreek and sipping some Guinness. I'm already producing double the milk I was two days ago. It's not a breastmilk bonanza around here by any means, but it's progress, and we'll take it.
And the best news of all? Noah gained SIX OUNCES in TWENTY-FOUR HOURS thanks to the formula and outgrew the newborn diapers for the second time in his short little life.
Oh, and he loves his pacifier. Suck on that, Lactation Consultant version 1.0. (Although thanks for the Soothies and the prescription nipple cream. They are extremely appreciated, OH MY GOD.)
Meanwhile, he gets cuter and cuter and perfecter and perfecter by the minute. (He sleeps through the night, did I tell you that? We have to wake him up for Baby Weight Gain Challenge 2005 but if we didn't? He's down for the count.)
He's quite the cuddler too.
The bouncy seat: just one of the four thousand purchases made by paranoid parents-to-be who figured they'd be cursed with a fussy sleeper, only to birth a child who would sleep in a Hemnes drawer without a squawk.
Daddy is whipped.
So am I. Also kind of puffy.