Milk Woes

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Peekaboo, I see you.
It's amazing how much less stressful breast feeding has been this second time with Ezra. To be fair, I didn't worry too much with Isaac, but there were some supply lags and issues here and there. The first that I experienced was right around 4 months post partum. I'd been back at work for over a month and started to increase my mileage with running . . . it quickly became very apparent to me that I had to cut back. And by cut back, I mean that I completely stopped running. I gained some weight back and was actually more fit at 4 months post partum than at 8 months, but it was worth it. I met my goal and then some of nursing Isaac past 12 months, even if I was holding onto an extra 10-15 lbs.

With Ezra, I did virtually the same thing. Recovery went well, I got active relatively quickly and right around 3-4 months, my supply took a huge hit. Knowing from my experience with Isaac, I cut running out and we resumed course. We occasionally supplement with formula, as I have no freezer stash. Yes, you read that right. It makes me incredibly sad, because I tried so hard to get stocked up in the early months, but wedding season killed it off.

If I'm being honest, I had in my head that Ezra wouldn't have any formula. I wasn't going back to work at 7 weeks like I did with Isaac. I knew what I was doing this time. We had a longer time together to establish my supply. I had all these reasons in my head why it wouldn't be necessary. There was a period of about 2-3 weeks where I agonized over the possibility, and then without my even being a part of it, Tony forgot the milk when he went to visit with his parents during one of my weddings and resorted to purchasing formula. And just like that, all of the anxiety was gone.

Just recently, as I've delved back into running, I thought again that I knew what I was doing. I thought at 9 months, with my 2nd child, I'm pretty much an old hand at this, certainly my body knows what it's doing. Ezra has been regulating my supply. We were golden. Except, apparently I was wrong. Even at 9 months now, my supply has been fickle as we tread the waters of 1/2 marathon training.

I've started my More Milk Plus supplement, increased my water, added another pump session at work and have figured out that under no circumstances can I run in the morning before work.We are going to make 12 months!

But then you add in this craziness, from my dang bottle continuing to fall off of my pump, and I seriously, can't wait to be done. I spilled the majority of my morning pump session, in my crotch.
I'm so pissed, I can't cry. Dam bottle will not fricken stay on.Think anyone will notice? So upset.

And then I give it 5 minutes and I get very emotional thinking about at the very least day weaning Ezra, which I plan to start in his 11th month, to stop pumping at work at 12 months. I continued nursing Isaac at night until he was 17 months old, and plan to do similar with Ezra.

To think, all of this time spent nursing/pumping and yet it will only be a blip in timeframe of my entire life.


Unknown said...

Oh girlfriend. I feel ya...on so many levels! I'm beginning to think every breastfeeding mama has their "moments". It's a difficult thing to do and yet we do it because we love our bebes.

You are my nursing role model. Seriously. Just know you are doing GREAT!

Kelly Bartlett said...

But so worth it Leah. Every moment spent nursing and pumping is so worth it. You've done great!

Meredith said...

I didn't really have a freezer stash either...I had a stupid, awful one-sided pump that was basically a glorified hand pump, and so it took FOREVER to pump even 4 or 5 oz. It was terrible. I do wish I'd taken More Milk Plus though or some other supplement!

I so, so, SO feel you. And honestly, after my experience with Lizzy, I'm kind of dreading nursing any future kids, but simultaneously determined to last longer than I did with Lizzy.

Jill said...

It's such an emotional roller coaster, but I'm glad you're body hasn't completely failed you! The idea of milk dumping right in front of your eyes makes me sad!

I hope it continues to go well for you! You've done a great job!

jen @ homeinthecountry said...


You are my hero for working full time and BFing/pumping. I'm not sure I could do it if I actually had to work a 5-day work week! I only work 2 days away from the baby, and even so, there are many days I wish she'd reverse cycle and nurse all night so I wouldn't have to pump... or that she'd learn that food is for eating when mama's not around!!

Anonymous said...

What a bummer that running affects your supply so much. It sucks that you have to balance the two so carefully. :-/

And man oh man, did I hate pumping, and I hardly had to do it. Huge kudos to you mamas that do it several times a day.

thejavamama said...

I did that so much! I hated when I spilled milk because it was like liquid gold. Drink lots of water and keep chugging momma! You are doing great!

Kim said...

I understand completely. When I work I stress myself out so much about milk supply, and then says like yesterday when I spill a couple ounces I just stay in the bathroom and cry. I think all of us feel the same way. Hugs!!

Megan said...

I am reading this while pumping so I hear you on that! I am sorry you're suffering with supply issues. I got sick last week and my supply has been suddenly hit with a loss of at least a few oz/session. And since I exclusively pump, I'm especially frustrated. I hope yours picks up with all the things you're trying and that you'll post and let us know what you're having success with. Good luck!!

Megalamode said...

You're right... it's crazy how short a time the nursing period will end up being when you look back at the big picture.

Way to go!

Julie S. said...

I am sorry you have supply issues! I am blessed and could literally nurse every newborn in a 100 mile radius. Seriously. And while it is a huge blessing, sometimes it is a major pain in the butt. I am slowly, slowly weaning K right now (I can't pump- it doesn't work right for me) and it's sad and happy all at the same time. She is distracted eating, is only nursing about 3 times a day, and is just growing out of it. Brayden did this too, and I fought him. I regretted it later on. It was much harder on me. So for now, I let her do what she wants and offer her a sippy cup of water with her cereal so she can get the hang of it. :)


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