Wednesday, March 25, 2009

And The Hits Just Keep on Coming....

LL is still on strike. Tomorrow will make it a full week. I spoke at length to a lactation consultant, who suggested continuing all of the things I was already doing, but taking a break for 24-48 hours from even offering him the breast. Honestly, though, I don't think she suggested this because it will help him to calm down... I'm pretty sure that she suggested it because it was making me too distraught to keep offering it to him over and over and over, only to be rejected over and over and over. But whatever. I didn't offer him my breast all day Tuesday, and then I tried again this morning, and I got the same reaction.

The lactation consultant also told me to start preparing myself for the possibility that he may never nurse again. I really didn't expect to hear this from a lactation consultant. She thinks that the root of the entire thing is the teething, which is also what I believe. But she also thinks that he won't want to nurse until after the top two teeth come in, which might not be for weeks. And because he's already so small, she thinks that we really have to keep offering him bottles for every feeding, to make sure that he gets enough food. And going that long with all bottles and no breast almost always makes babies never go back. So we're screwed. LL may never breast feed ever again.

As for my milk supply, she told me that I was still seeing a drop in production because I wasn't taking enough fenugreek, so she upped my dosage. She also warned me that I might experience an upset stomach from it, which explains a lot. I've had a persistent stomachache and headache for at least two weeks (or longer, I can't remember exactly when they started, though they've been a lot worse the last several days) and I'd been blaming it on stress. Yesterday, I also started to feel a bit faint, which seemed like it had to be from exhaustion and stress. Total misery.

Anyway, since LL is not nursing, there's technically no reason that I have to get up to feed him in the middle of the night, other than pumping, and I finally decided that sleep and stress reduction were becoming more important than my milk supply. So, last night, I decided that I would skip the middle-of-the-night pumping, just this once. I made a bottle for S to feed to LL at 4am, and then informed S that he was on his own until morning. And I slept all night long, for the first time in eight months. (Well, I did wake up a few times when LL was crying and S hadn't managed to soothe him yet, but I didn't have to get out of bed.)

I expected to feel better this morning, but I was still feeling dizzy and headachey. I tried writing a check for a bill that I had to pay, and I transposed numbers, added incorrectly, and misspelled the name of the company I was writing the check to. When I drove to work, I almost got into three separate car accidents, all entirely my fault. So then it finally occurred to me to look up side effects of fenugreek. The upset stomach I knew about. Migraine trigger is one that I probably should have seen coming. The ability to block absorption of NSAIDs like Advil explains why the headache hasn't gone away for several days. But holy crap I wish someone had mentioned that, in semi-rare cases, fenugreek can dangerously lower both blood sugar and blood pressure.

After seeing spots during my afternoon lab seminar, I had to call S to come to pick me up from work, because I didn't think that I was capable of walking to my car, much less driving it home. The room just kept spinning spinning spinning around me.

So... no more fenugreek for me. No more magic potion. If LL breaks his strike in the next day or two, I might be able to nurse him enough to bring my supply back up that way, but otherwise, I think we're at the end. Really not how I wanted my breast feeding experience to conclude, but there it is.


  1. I'm sorry. I can't even imagine how that must feel. You'll be in my thoughts.

  2. My heart goes out to you. It really does. I am so sorry

  3. I'm sorry. Wow, that's rough. You are really going above and beyond for your son. Now it's time to focus on yourself & your health. I'm so jealous you got a full night of sleep. If that keeps up you're sure to feel better soon!

  4. I'm so sorry. Obviously you've done everything possible to BF and then some. You have to think of yourself too, and making yourself sick won't help matters too. Hang in there.

  5. I'm sorry. This is a hard way to end BFing.I have no words to say that I think can comfort you, but you have tried really really hard. Thats all you can do. LL's eating solids, and formula is not horrible or bad. I'm sorry this was not your choice. Many hugs and prayers for you.


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