After two days of being in labor there he was … my beautiful handsome boy. I was so tired, so weak and exhausted but nothing could make me stronger than when I saw him. Right there in front of me was the little man I cooked in my belly for 9 months. I wanted to feed him, care for him and nurture him.
I just had an Emergency C Section after being in labor for two days. Unfortunately, because I was so tolerant to pain medication my body would reject anything that was giving to me. The doctors tried the epidural 3 times and nothing worked. So being cut open while I was awake was too dangerous and the possibility that I would feel everything was through the roof. So I was put to sleep. YES, too sleep! Do you know what that meant? that meant I would have to go to sleep pregnant and wake up with a baby. I could not hear his first cry, I could not be the first to hold him, I could not be the first to feed him. Ugh ! This makes me cry just talking about it! This doesn’t make me any less of mom and this I know for sure. Yet it still bothers me because it is something that I truly wanted to experience. Here I am a whole day later after my child was born, looking at him in awe. I was so drugged up from all of the medication that I did not have the energy to wake up and hold my little Giovanni. Since I was out for so long the hospital had to bottle feed my baby since he was hungry. I know my baby had to be fed but this made me angry, I wanted to make sure that I created a bond with him while I breast fed him and all I could remember thinking was “now he’s never going to want to be breast fed”.
It is now day 2 and there is my son in the bassinet making baby noises, then all of sudden a screeching sound comes from the bassinet and right away I knew this was a “hungry cry”. So my motherly instincts kicked in and I grabbed him, whipped out my boob placed him on my nipple and nothing happened. I pulled him away and then placed back on my nipple and he sucked but then he would fall off. I felt myself getting frustrated. Here is my son, crying and crying and crying and the one thing that I am supposed to be able to do I CAN’T DO. I remember me trying to comfort him and I would try and try again to place him on my breast. Till finally I didn’t know what to do anymore and I rang for a nurse. She comes into the room with this grin on her face. She looks at me and says “How can I help you?” I was so frustrated at myself that all I could think about was smacking the grin off of her face. I knew it wasn’t her fault. I tell her “My son keeps crying and he’s not latching to my nipple”. She looks at me and with so much confidence in her voice, she says “OK, let me help” She places a pillow underneath my arm and the baby to help position him. She rubs my nipple after squeezing some of my milk on to his nose to help him smell my milk. She then helps me rub my nipple on his lips and baby Giovanni opens his mouth and latches for a whole 2 minutes and falls back off. He starts to cry again. The nurse tried helping me for another 45 minutes and there was just no success. HE WAS JUST NOT LATCHING ON. She looks at me and says “ok, so maybe we should bottle feed him for today and wait till tomorrow to give you some time to produce some more milk”. If I could kill this woman with my eyes she would have died a trillion times lol. I DID NOT WANT TO BOTTLE FEED MY CHILD. I was so frustrated that I couldn’t do the one job that I needed to do. I couldn’t let me baby cry, so I bottle fed him that day. Every couple of hours I would try to breastfeed him so that my body could produce more milk.
This is my 3rd day in the dam hospital and I am still not producing enough milk to feed my child. I am now the sourest, unhappy, angry momma bear in the whole hospital. All I want to do is feed my baby my milk. The nurse comes into the room again with the stupid smirk on her face and right behind her she is rolling in this sucking contraption. Its a breast pump on wheels. She looks at me and says “Look I know this is frustrating, this may be able to help. We are going to have you breast pump for the whole day to help your body produce more milk. The more you pump the more milk your body will produce”. I looked at her and said “fine”. Day three and I am only pumping 1 ounce of milk every 3 hours. I AM PISSED.
This is my last day at the hospital and I am making SOME progress. Now instead of 1 ounce every 3 hours, I am now pumping 2 ounces per boob every 3 hours. Not totally there but definitely in a better place. But he still couldn’t latch on. The doctor comes in because he heard about my frustration aka cursing at all of the nurses and took a look at Giovanni. He notices that Giovanni’s tongue was short and he was tongue tied. Tongue–tie division involves cutting the short, tight piece of skin connecting the underside of the tongue to the floor of the mouth (the lingual frenulum). It’s a quick, simple and almost painless procedure that usually resolves feeding problems straight away. So Giovanni undergoes the procedure and 4 hours later is latching better than ever. Before we leave the nurse hands me nipple shields to help the baby latch even better. I look at the nurses and apologize for my MONSTER NEW MOM behavior. I feel much more confident in breastfeeding than before but I am still upset that I am not producing enough milk. We packed all of our stuff and took the baby home for the first time.
We are finally home and I am finally able to enjoy my little bundle of joy. Usually, my morning would consist of me waking up at 3 am to feed Giovanni but this morning was different. This morning I feel my breast to hurt so bad that I couldn’t sleep. I woke up at 2:30 am and realized that my shirt was soak and wet. I was so confused. I run to the bathroom to look down and see my boobs look like Pamela Andersons! They looked AMAZING to let me tell you and the best part was they were filled with milk. I tried placing Giovanni on my boob and he almost drowned with how much milk came squirting out of my nipple. I had to breast pump. Now I was breast pumping 8 ounces of milk in one hour from each breast. I was producing so much milk that I was freezing the excess milk. I was literally the happiest person in the world.
Breastfeeding is super hard. I thought this was going to be a piece of cake and going in with this expectation made me feel like crap when I couldn’t do it for myself. People fail to tell you how patient you have to be. People fail to tell you that you don’t produce 10 ounces of milk overnight. People fail to tell you how frustrating this can truly be. People fail to tell you that bottle feeding is ok to do while you are in the process of producing milk. That breast pumping is ok to do. None of that makes you any less of a mom. Your body is freaking amazing. Trust your body it knows what to do. Be patient. You are going to be awesome and you are going to rock breastfeeding. My number one tip for you is to ASK ASK ASK questions of your nurses and doctors. They are truly there to help you along your new journey as a mom!
On that note,
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