This is my breastfeeding story.
very different capacity. I knew nothing about maternity nursing so I trusted everything these nurses were telling me. So, we sat in the NICU for an hour, trying to get baby Palmer to latch. No success. So, we had to feed her formula from a bottle. I had no idea I could have asked for donor milk. No one told me I had the option, so for the days and weeks following, that’s what we fed her.
Now, luckily for us, we only stayed in the hospital for 2 nights, but it wasn’t until the 2nd day of stay that any nurse brought up the idea of pumping. I had no idea that getting started right away was so important in establishing supply. Of course I wanted to pump. I knew that breast milk was the best thing for my baby and had known all along that is
what I wanted her to have. I was so discouraged the first day when I had to feed her formula, but knew it was important for her to eat to get bigger and go home. So, the nurse set me up with a double breast pump and I got to work. Drops. That’s all I got the first few times I pumped. Just drops. It was disheartening to see that I was supposed to be able to provide my baby with this thing they call liquid gold and I was only producing drops!
But I kept at it. I would attempt to breast feed first with every feeding but we couldn’t get a latch at all, let alone a good one. Then it was feeding what very little milk I had pumped combined with formula. That’s how it went for days, until I referred myself to the local Breastfeeding Clinic a couple of days after leaving the hospital. They were AMAZING there! Seriously. The doctors were so helpful. They showed me how to get a good latch and how to hold my baby. They gave me pointers, tips, and a lot of encouragement. That was exactly what I needed. So, I left their clinic that day and went to rent a hospital grade double breast pump and got to work. If my baby couldn’t latch to feed, I was sure as hell going to provide her with nutrient rich breast milk!
took up SO. MUCH. TIME. I couldn’t be happier with the way things turned out.
That is so great that you persevered and she was able to breastfeed for a year! Good for you. I was able to tour a milk bank a couple weeks ago to help get the word out about donor milk. I wish more doctors and nurses knew about this to give NICU babies!!
True, true words. Amazing!
This sounds so similar to our journey. My babe was born at the same weight at 36 weeks. The only difference was our hospital and staff were very encouraging and helpful in regards to breastfeeding. The nipple shield was given to us on day 1 (due to her gestational age and small mouth). It worked wonders, and I was given a pump immediately. My daughter and I continue to have a wonderful breastfeeding relationship 19 months later. Though I hope she decides to wean before baby #2 arrives in the next few weeks! SO happy your perservered and it worked out wonderfully for you.
You should be so proud of yourself for sticking it out and making it work. My son was born just over 6 weeks early and we worked on breastfeeding the entire month he was in the hospital. I ended up giving up and exclusively pumped for 10 months. I sometimes get mad at myself for giving up.
Wow after reading this, I felt like I was reading what happen to me.. It is so nice to know other women went through the same thing I did. It was so frustrating at times but I am so glad I have stuck with it. My baby is not 7 weeks old, but I can tell my milk is getting a little weak so I need to start doing something so I can freeze my milk..Thanks for sharing!!