Breastfeeding Styles

18 Jul

Feeding Temperaments

I’m a fortunate one, breastfeeding has been about as easy as could be expected.  I had once or twice that I got so frustrated I wanted to cry. I also had a nipple that cracked but healed pretty quickly.  Unfortunately I’m the only one of my friends or even friends of friends that’s managing to keep at it.  Most gave up after 4 weeks and my heart just breaks for them.  I think they would have benefited from this spiel about babies’ feeding types.  I wish I had read it a lot sooner than I did.  It’s from my pediatrician and was given to me in the hospital along with a huge pile of other pamphlets and paperwork and I didn’t read it until weeks later.  I wish I’d have read this before even going to the hospital.

You’ll laugh at #1 & #4, and probably know a distressed mother with a #2 or #5.  Or maybe they’re only entertaining because I’ve seen all these in Monkey though he’s predominantly #3 minus the screaming – he’ll get so happy and smiley he can’t actually latch or will fall off to giggle before really getting started, he combines all this with #4.   I laugh at him.

Breastfeeding attitudes:

(1) The Barracuda
Barracuda babies vigorously and promptly grasp the nipple and suck energetically for 10 to 20 minutes. Barracudas don’t dally. Be careful of sore nipples.

(2) Procrastinators
Procrastinators put off until the 4th or 5th post-delivery day what they could have done from the start. They wait until the milk comes in to become interested in sucking. There is no need to prod or force the procrastinators, they do well once they start.

(3) Excited Ineffectiveness
These infants become so excited and active at the breast they often lose grasp of the nipple and start screaming. It is often necessary for the mothers of these infants to calm or quiet the baby before putting the baby back to the breast. In a few days the infant will become well adjusted if you are patient and do not become “unraveled” by your baby’s initial attitude.

(4) Gourmets
Gourmets (or mouthers) insist on mouthing the nipple and smacking their lips before nursing. If these infants are hurried, they may become furious. If left alone they will settle down to serious nursing in a few minutes.

(5) Resters
Resters prefer to nurse a few minutes and then rest a few minutes. Nursing will take longer than with other infants. Don’t try to hurry them.

Please share this with expectant moms and new moms so that they know, but also share it with experienced moms so they can laugh and remember.

Pregnancy Update : 41 Weeks of 40

21 May

So we’re officially well past due. How far depends on where you count from. At my prenatal appointment this week I talked it over with my midwife. Our due date varied from one method of counting to another. We were working with May 14, but after a careful review we’re able to go with May 16. This is preferable because I fear being induced and mandatory induction is based on days past due date.

Therefore as of Tuesday, May 21st:

Official Due Date: May 16th
Induction Day: May 28th

Days overdue: 5 days
Days left to induction: 7 days

The bad news is that Monkey still doesn’t have his head down and engaged, my cervix is not thinned or dilated. There just isn’t a good bodily sign that labor is pending.

The good news is that Monkey is moving lots, there’s plenty of amniotic fluid, and everyone is healthy – there is no problem waiting.

So how am I feeling?
I had convinced myself that I was going to give birth this past weekend (between Thursday and Saturday) when it didn’t happen I was really frustrated & disappointed. Now I’ve just resigned myself to waiting and I don’t mind. I’m less freaked about being induced but still not thrilled with the idea.

My feet are sore, really sore, I want feeling back in my carpel tunnel plagued hands, but otherwise I don’t feel too bad.

What have I done to bring on labor?
Walked until my feet are sore, did the nipple stimulation recommended, had sex, ate spicy food, got diarrhea, and more. Nothing seems to work, I just don’t think I was that close to labor to be pushed over the line.

Today however I got a burst of cleaning energy later in the day and on a whim cleaned up the garage. I made up some food to take to visit a friend, visited and returned to find myself still interested in projects and so finished some laundry, labeled and organized the boxes atop my kitchen cabinets, and even did a little with the dishes. Today was the first time I felt like giving any attention to pulling out my sewing machine to make my birthing skirt. I hope this is the “nesting” spurt that proceeds labor.

Tomorrow I have scheduled a massage which has been known to induce labor. Also an aligned spine and hips should help ease & speed delivery so I’m doing that too. Let’s hope that those combined with my energy burst mean that we’re going to meet Monkey before the weekend.

Here’s hoping I don’t post any more “pregnancy updates” and just have a birth announcement!

Pregnancy Update: Due Date Today!

14 May

Prenatal today was the simple kind: pee test, blood pressure, weight, fetal heart rate, quick conversation with midwife, done. I asked but she wouldn’t give me a guess on baby’s weight, she says she has to see his head first, bone density makes the biggest difference in baby weight. Now, much to many people’s disappointment there was no cervix check. No idea if there’s progress there. I was given a short list of things to do to try to kickstart labor though including sex and such to release oxytocin (what the induction drug Pitocin tries to simulate) walking, rocking, and to keep my knees shoulder width apart when on my balance ball instead of spread eagle.

Now that we’re to my due date there are medical checks to be done to make sure baby & placenta are healthy and able to just wait around. I have another appointment in 2 days to run some basic, non-invasive tests. However, my midwife and staff wished me luck in missing that appointment in favor of delivery.

Bad news? Monkey’s a little stinker and is still floating. No head engagement to the pelvis means no pressure on the cervix which means less likely to efface & dilate. *sigh*

The last possible day baby is allowed to be born is Memorial Day, May 27th. Therefore if labor hasn’t started on it’s own on May 26th (Hubby’s birthday) then I will be induced that day. This is due to the medical malpractice insurance requirements, not the policy or wishes of my midwife. It’s just the unfortunate state of health care in the USA.

In other news:

Mother’s day was excellent. My mom came out to visit for 2 days during the week and we just sorta hung out. It was really nice. On Saturday we went to hubby’s parent’s house for BBQ where I gorged on filet, roasted veggies, fruit salad, taters, and garlic bread. I was super tasty. I told hubby he got me two planters for Mother’s Day: a raspberry & a blueberry bush that we can take with us when we move in 2015.

I still haven’t made my birthing skirt. But I did properly pack my hospital bag.

The master bedroom carpet extraction is done and the windows have been sealed. Once we get the blinds back up we’re all ready for Monkey to come sleep in there with us.

Mom and I were like two giggling school girls in the fabric store where we found the most wonderful baby print fabrics. I now have what I need for making Monkey’s jungle curtains! Woot!

That’s it for this week. Let’s hope the next post is full of baby photos!!

Days left to deliver: 12

Pregnancy Update: 39 Weeks and Counting

7 May

39 weeks complete
1 week to due date, aka 7 days

Yes, I’m counting down. No, not to my delivery date, merely my due date.

I had a prenatal appointment yesterday and low and behold nothing has changed. No seriously. My body is showing no signs of wanting to deliver. Monkey is still above the birth canal and with no pressure from him my cervix is holding strong. So my midwife did a little massage-y type stuff to it and hoped that would help adding that I’d get out of this the way I got into it. Yes, that’s right, medically recommended sex! Have I mentioned I love my midwife?

Last night in hopes of helping Monkey nuzzle my pubic bone with his head I spent a lot of time on my balance ball. I rocked my hips back and forth, front to back, and around and around in circles. I’ve also taken to walking the dog everyday since the swaying and moving of walking is supposed to help too.

Yesterday I was also super productive and rewarded myself with a tiny tiny glass of wine. I was delish!

My heartburn which had subsided in recent weeks came back in horrible form. I laid down for bed earlier this week and stomach acid flowed right up into my mouth. I had to sleep on an incline. That was all I could take of that. Finally gave into the Prilosec OTC my midwife said I could use if things got really bad. I figured a sort of slow motion puke was bad.

Mother’s day is this weekend. It’s my first-ish. I certainly have a baby but not delivered makes the holiday feel a little like a cheat to celebrate. Then again, he’s here, he’s active, and I’m taking care of him by eating healthy and being properly active. On account of this though my mom is coming to visit today to celebrate with me. It’s going to be special, and I’m thankful for that.

Minor updates:

The master bedroom carpet pull is done making the room nice and clean. Monkey is welcome to join us in his own sleeper anytime now.

Nursery is done enough though I might still get curtains up.

I’ve packed my hospital bag. Well, kinda. There are things and bags in Monkey’s crib ready to be assembled and whisked off with me to the hospital.

I haven’t stitched together my toss-away birthing skirt. Somehow I just keep thinking it’s going to be something to do while I’m in early labor, you know, as a distraction and time passer.

Pregnancy Update: 38 Weeks

30 Apr

38 weeks complete
2 weeks to due date

Had a prenatal appointment today. Very routine. Baby’s heart rate sounded good, talked delivery a bit, and submitted the hospital’s checklist birth plan form to become part of my chart. Also got my whooping cough vaccine.

Friday I woke up in horrible pain. My hands were extremely stiff, painful, and tingly. I cannot believe how painful carpel tunnel can be. I promptly called my chiropractor (so glad I found a non-quack) and rushed over there. She adjusted my hands (and spine) then the rehab therapist put on kinesio tape to apply a sort of soft tissue traction. It bonds to the skin and lifts to relieve pressure. You see it on athletes. Seems to be helping. At least I can sign my name on credit slips again.

On Friday evening we had our maternity photo shoot. The photographer who shot my wedding gives a free maternity session to all his brides. He also said he’s do the newborn through first year sessions for free. I just have to pay for the full size images I want to keep, though I get all the “web sized” lower resolutions ones at no cost. The maternity shoot yielded over a dozen really good shots but I’m still deciding which I want to buy for ability to print.

Peek-a-boo!

Peek-a-boo!

Geek Dad waiting for his baby to load.

Geek Dad waiting for his baby to load.

In love and waiting for our little Monkey.

In love and waiting for our little Monkey.

Birthing classes finished last week. We’re very glad we took them. The videos of all the babies being born left me with one clear image: how alert and interactive the non-drugged baby was in comparison to all the others. The more I think about an all natural birth the more I think about it like a marathon. I trained for this with fitness boot camp, running, yoga and more. I went through emotional hell with the PMDD. Having to rely on medical intervention of any sort would be like having trained for a marathon and jumping on a bicycle before the finish line. I’m not that person. I have no issue with the women who want take advantage of the assistance available and marvels of modern medicine. I’m not against those methods. They’re just not for me. I didn’t give up when running made me want to puke, and I’m not going to back down from doing this delivery drug free. This is my marathon.

We also took a car seat safety class last night. SafeKids is an organization aimed at preventing accidental injury to kids. They partner with my hospital to offer a FREE carseat safety class. They also offer “safety checks” for FREE all over town every week. They collect stats on how many car seats at these checks are improperly used – everything from blatant misuse to the straps weren’t quite right. The sad truth: over 96% of the people they check are misusing their carseat. YIKES! They showed off some extreme cases but also talked about the risk of even the loose straps or misplaced chest strap does in an accident. Everyone in the class brought their seats, we had lots of time to play and demonstrate. Then the instructors even came out to our cars. It was wonderful. Totally worth the 2 hours.

The nursery is close to done. Dragging my heels on addressing the naked windows. Couldn’t find any fabric I liked at the store for curtains. Totally forgot to measure the window size so it didn’t really matter anyway. Not putting in a huge effort on finding a rug either. I guess since Monkey’s not going to sleep there for a while I’m not worried about it.

Since Monkey will be sleeping in our room for a while I knew it needed a deep cleaning. Hubby helped me move the bed and such but as we worked we just kept staring at the carpet we hated and knowing that there were finished hardwoods (and a risk of possible scary stuff) under that carpet we, on a huge whim, tore out the carpet. We’re 85% done and sleeping on a mattress on the floor. But it’s totally worth it! We’re hoping to finish that project tonight.

Before

Before

After

After

That’s it for this week in my pregnancy.
Expect an update again next Tuesday.

Classic Snake Game – BEAT!

24 Apr

Back in the day as a little geek in school I had my TI-85 and later my TI-86 which were wonderful tools for math & physics.  But when I was bored during lectures it was good too.  Nearly all us graphing calculator toting geeks had installed the snake game and played it when we had some time to kill.   All this gives me great respect for this winning game of snakes.  Never could I imagine “winning” the game.

 

Animated Gif: winning at snakes game

Slightly sped up for your enjoyment this game is amazing!

 

Thanks to the fine people of kotaku for sharing this.

Pregnancy Update: Full Term!

23 Apr

37 weeks done – medically full-term
3 weeks to actual due date

Monkey’s lungs should, according to medical knowledge, be ready for air now should labor or an emergency occur. Monkey is also packing on the fat for cuteness and warmth – very important once he’s out of this nice cosy 98ºF body.

Prenatal yesterday was good. Heartbeat sounded loud and fast, a great sign. Head is down but my midwife disagrees that baby has really “dropped” though if you look at my body he’s DEFINITELY lower. My perfect beach ball belly is now a teardrop shape and there is no ledge at my hips. I was able to put on my old jeans and just put a hair tie around the button holes but not anymore! I also don’t have belly between my boobs which makes bras much easier to wear again and my heartburn is less.

My midwife informs me that her medical malpractice insurance requires we not allow this pregnancy to go further than 41 weeks and 6 days. Apparently there is placenta aging issues and some such stuff. So Monkey’s deadline for delivery is Memorial Day, May 27th – the day after hubby’s birthday. I’m still thinking that since growth shown by ultrasounds was exactly on track that we’ll be meeting Monkey very near his May 14th due date. But who knows!

Capturing this pregnancy on film has been difficult thanks to the weather. It was a lot of days of rain followed by record flooding such that we rescheduled my maternity photo shoot for this coming Friday. Stay tuned for details next Tuesday.

Comparisson of flooded/not flooded downtown GR

The record books were updated. I heard we had 14 straight days of rain.

How am I feeling? Good days, bad days. Good moments, bad moments. My carpel tunnel is a real bother. I don’t have much sensory in my index & middle finger of either hand. My thumb comes in and out. They’re just a bucket of tingles with delayed everything else (hot/cold, soft/hard, wet/dry). The belly/chest weight isn’t so bad until I want to roll over in bed or tie my shoes. I do stairs just fine (aside from weak cardio capacity). No notable swelling, no real pain. I am however having my first sustained emotional issue. I’m terribly irritable. Unfortunately for him, hubby is the most effected by this.

Birthing classes are going really well. Yesterday was newborn care: how to give a bath, change a diaper, feed, burp, and relieve gas. Last week was birthing & delivery. Wednesday’s class covered pain meds & interventions. Though they did a very good job at being unbiased it really cemented it for me that I want nothing to do with meds & interventions. I understand why people get them, but they’re not for me. Yes I know “don’t rule them out” and all that supportive safety net advice. But truly I tell you a natural birth is exactly what I want. I want it just like I want the hardcore ass kicking of fitness boot camp. Just like I refuse pain meds in nearly every single situation of my life. Yes, I’m different from the majority, but I’m me and this is me being myself. Please don’t feel like I’m saying the way you did/will labor & deliver are wrong. My actions being different are not a messed-up way of invalidating your choices. They’re simply my choices, for me.

The crib mattress arrives today and the protector & sheets are washed so as soon as it arrives I can put it all together and volia! usable crib! I also washed the swing & sleeper bedding so they’re ready for Monkey too. Now I feel like the last things I could really use in the nursery are curtains/blinds, a place for dirty diapers, and a small table near the rocker.

In finishing the nursery I’ve started to set aside a few things for the hospital bag. Over the next few days I’ll be putting the bag together. I’m open to suggestions on what daddy, baby, and I will need/want.

That’s it for this week, see you next Tuesday!

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