I can’t complain though, because I love every minute of being a Mom to these precious babies. I want to thank Julie for starting this series and allowing me to contribute my story. I know it was something I read during my pregnancy that helped me prepare for what was to come. Having a Mom’s perspective is so much more relate able than what you learn from a doctor or lactation consultant.
videos, and read La Leche League’s breastfeeding book. But nothing completely prepares you for what is to come.
I was able to go see my babies starting that afternoon and each time I went I would bring my tiny
bottle of “liquid gold”. The nurses would alternate which of my girls were given my milk. The hospital offered donor breast milk, which we chose to give the girls over starting them on formula. Due to their difficulty sucking and swallowing, I was unable to nurse immediately. They all had NG tubes and didn’t try bottles until day 3. The doctors allowed me to try nursing on Day 5.
The latching became painful for me very quickly. I would be reluctant to try breastfeeding due to the discomfort ,but I knew that I needed to get in the habit and get the girls used to it. There were lactation consultants in the NICU that came to help me often. They showed me correct positioning and introduced a nipple shield that seemed to help a little. Just as I thought one would get the hang of it, she would barely latch at the next feeding. I had two lazy eaters that would fall asleep and one smart eater that knew if she didn’t latch well that a bottle was coming her way. After two weeks in the NICU, my babies were healthy enough to come home. They were eating all of their feedings by bottle and no longer needed NG tubes. They had still not caught on to nursing and it was time to begin this journey at home with 3 babies.
For almost 6 weeks, I continued to try to nurse my little ones. I would begin nursing a baby and when she became fussy or the next baby in line became fussy, I would hand her off to my husband to bottle feed. It was like an assembly line. However, this would take us about 2 hours including me having to pump afterwards. When the babies ate every 3 hours, this was not very efficient. After 6 weeks, the girls still couldn’t nurse to fill themselves up, I was in a lot of pain because they did not have good latches, and I became frustrated that I didn’t have enough time to play or snuggle with my babies. I made a decision at that point to stop trying to nurse. I would pump and bottle feed my babies to speed up the process and give me more time to interact with them. I decided that for my family, this was best for all of us.
What is not easy, is to find all of the calories I need to eat in a day. They say you need to consume 500 more calories per day per baby. That is an extra 1500 calories. I’m not sure if I reach that but I know I am always eating and never feel full (and I weigh less than I did when I became pregnant). I eat three large meals plus I have multiple snacks per day. I feel like I’m always eating or drinking something!
has no dairy or soy, I want to continue to provide them with the good stuff Momma makes. Being a new Mom to triplets has been the most rewarding and life-changing experience of my life. I’m proud of myself for continuing to pump so often to keep up my supply. I can’t wait to see what the ending to our breastfeeding journey will be. If you are interested, I share more tips about exclusively pumping on my blog. Thanks again, Julie, for letting me share my story on your amazing series 🙂
over at Team Patterson about her life as a triplet Momma.
Be sure to catch up with the rest of the Breastfeeding Diaries at the top of my navigation bar. If you would like to submit your story please email me at thegirlintheredshoes @ gmail