|No need for cropping... Ayden censored the shot for me :)|
1) Milk Blister - This is when a tiny layer of skin grows over one of your milk duct openings. I had never heard of this... It looks like a little white dot and is pretty painful right where the dot is. The fix? Placing a hot washcloth over the area before nursing. It took two days but once it broke through, the pain was gone immediately as if it were never there in the first place.
2) Favored Side - Ayden obviously favored the right side from the start since he only had trouble latching on the left. As soon as my sister heard about this she said, "you'll always produce more on the right side and it will probably end up being a little bit bigger." She was so right. A couple of weeks ago I started seeing a size difference, then a couple days after that, Ayden began getting fussy on the left breast. I have no idea if the favoritism belonged to Ayden or my subconscious but somehow, somewhere along the way, we began expecting more from righty. So, in the true nature of supply and demand, she started to exceed expectations. Ayden was still getting plenty of milk, as evidence by his diapers and spit up, so I can't say I was worried; but I called my midwife to make sure I was taking the right measures to even things back out. I told her that my good friend, Google, had suggested always latching Ayden onto that lesser producing side first, since a baby's suction is always strongest at the start, and pumping after/between feedings on that side only. She said that stimulation was definitely the best way to encourage milk production so those tactics should work best. We are still working on this one... The size difference is much less noticeable (it was never bad enough to notice through my clothes) but he is still a bit fussy on the left side and righty yields twice as much milk than lefty when I pump. David bought me a Madela manual pump today so that I don't have to use my big pump and style for all of the extra pumping sessions I need to do. I found I was putting it off due to inconvenience which is not good... It's important to me that the girls are as close to matching as possible at the end of this journey and my midwife warned that the size difference can become permanent if you don't stay on top of it. If something's important to you, you do what you need to to do to make it happen, right? I'm hoping that with the manual pump it will be easier to pump on Lefty while Ayden nurses on Righty since I won't have to worry about electrical outlet proximity. I shall update on our progress here in a couple of weeks.
3) Plugged Ducts - I've had a few plugged ducts over the past 4 months but nothing that required any extra effort besides nursing... Until yesterday. I made the mistake of skipping a feeding while I taught my makeup class. My plan was to go home and pump right afterward which would have only made me go one hour past Ayden's feeding. But we let our busy schedule get in the way and decided to go straight to the bike shop to get our trailer. By the time we got home, 2 hours past his feeding, I was engorged to say the least. Especially over-achiever Righty... I nursed and pumped but I still didn't feel soft like you should right after a feeding. I would massage between and during feedings but it only got worse. By this afternoon, the entire top half of righty was hard and filled with little knots, not unlike when my milk first came in. We had big plans to take Ayden swimming for the first time but I decided that for today, clearing the plug needed to be top priority. I've heard that mastitis can really knock you out and I had no desire to experience that first hand. So we cancelled our swimming plans and I headed to the shower with my comb friend here.
|Yup... a wide tooth comb!|
Just because we missed out on swimming, doesn't mean we didn't have some fun today! We gave our bike trailer a try for the first time.
He's still a little small so we had to boost him up with a rolled blanket and just took it easy around the neighborhood. We don't plan to do any more than that until he's sitting up independently and can fit into his own little helmet.
We felt like what we did today was actually a little less intense than a jog in the jogging stroller and Ayden loved it!
Later in the day, we went to the local arboretum and walked around. It was so beautiful!
Ayden was getting tired and was a bit fussy but then I moved up to walk in front of the stroller and his whole mood changed.
He loves the City Mini stroller in the neighborhood but apparently being pushed toward the strange, unknown wilderness made him a little uneasy because seeing my familiar backside walking out in front of him made all the difference :).
After we got Ayden to bed, David and I ate some paleo crunch cereal for dinner (our form of take-out) and snuggled up to watch We Bought A Zoo. It was a cute movie and a bit of a tear jerker... We miss Ayden while he's asleep but it's also nice to get some grown up time.
It ended up being a great day and we are going to try to make it to the pool tomorrow. Gotta love three day weekends for getting in some quality family time!
Do you have any breastfeeding obstacles that you overcame? Tell me your stories!