Friday, November 4, 2011

Nursing through Pregnancy - 29/30 weeks

I don't know if you've noticed a trend here, but I was recently thinking about how I haven't figured things out until after - when it comes to my milk. It took some time to figure out that Sasha was asking for more food. Then I dealt with the horrid tickle for a bit before I figured out that my milk was dwindling and that this was probably the reason behind her being hungrier. My poor starving baby!

Then I went through a short phase (only a couple of weeks, thankfully!) where nursing would sometimes send my body arousal signals. It took a little bit to figure out that this was likely because my breasts were bone dry. I hadn't been dry (as far as I know) since Tyler was born 13 years ago!

Hobo Mama ~ breastfeeding in the third trimesterHobo Mama breastfeeding
in her 3rd Trimester

So the arousal thing has been gone for a few weeks already. I don't tend to test my nipples (hand express a few drops, if possible) because I mostly think of it after Sasha has nursed and my nipples are tender! However, I did finally do another check and was so surprised to see clear liquid seep out! I checked the other side and got more clear, then a bit of tinged liquid. Of course! This explains the absence of arousal! My nipples are no longer set on arousal, they're set back to feed (or prepare to feed)!

I guess Sasha went without (or with dwindled supply of) milk for close to 10 weeks, maybe. She now nurses with her teeth. I think she sometimes does flick my nipple with her tongue (this is not pleasant), but she isn't really nursing properly. I met with the Lactation Consultant to discuss Spencer, his possible nursing problems and special nursing aids (including simple hand positions). I also asked her about Sasha's lazy nursing habits. She had already expressed appreciation that tandem nursing my toddler would help my milk supply. (Yay, support!) She said as long as Sasha wasn't causing any harm to my nipples, I shouldn't worry about her lazy latch. (Easy for her to say!)

So now that I have something in here, I've started expressing a few drops before Sasha "latches" and showing it to her ~ in an attempt to show her that there is something here again. I don't know if it will change anything (it hasn't so far), but I've got to try.

Sasha sleepingNaked Sasha sleeping sideways in her bed at the apartment.

I would like to add that there had been some benefits and improvements lately (before our move, anyway). Bed time had become less of an issue on most nights. I started taking into account how well Sasha slept the night before, how early she got up, as well as when and for how long she napped. I used this information to choose (still a bit of a guess) a time to shut down the apartment and start working on sleep. I had great success with this on most nights! If I chose a time and then let it slide, I regretted it. (The sleep process has been a clean slate of trial and error as we've moved into a new house with people and their stuff, so its been exciting for her.)

Another major benefit of the milk process has been that I used to be stuck in her bed when I put her down. No matter how deep asleep she was in my lap before setting her down, I often got stuck there in her bed for a while. This was frustrating, especially on nights when I made many failed attempts to get my nipple back. Now, however, when I go to set her down into her bed (onto her mattress), she usually lets go and rolls to one side or the other - staying asleep on her own! She'll mumble for Momma, but stays asleep. If she doesn't, I can forget sleep altogether and start the process all over. Lying in her bed with her doesn't usually work at that point.

So that's about where things stand at the moment. I'm actually 31 weeks as of tomorrow. I can't believe how soon Spencer is due to arrive!

If you have nursing during pregnancy stories or links to share, please do leave them in the comments for me!

Find the other posts in this series:
  • Nursing through Pregnancy - final weeks (39th week)
  • Nursing through Pregnancy - final weeks (38th week)
  • Nursing through Pregnancy - final weeks (36-37, so far)
  • Nursing through Pregnancy - 35 weeks
  • Nursing through Pregnancy - 29/30 weeks
  • Nursing through Pregnancy - 25 weeks
  • Nursing through Pregnancy - 20 weeks
  • Extended Breastfeeding, So Far! (posted pretty much the weekend I got pregnant!)
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