Posts Tagged ‘ boob ’

Milestone Monday: NO FREE PASS FOR MOMS

Monday, September 24th, 2012

There is no free pass in motherhood. A while back I wrote about why the boob rocks and how I would get extra sleep every morning because Phil had to get up with Fia. I would lie in bed with Emmett, he’d nurse and we’d both fall asleep for at least an extra hour. I was so thrilled–almost giddy–about this scenario.

Anytime I needed a break from the chaos or wanted to relax, Emmett and I would just disappear under the guise of nursing. Don’t get me wrong: I did put him on the boob. But it went beyond survival for us/him. It was more like the perfect excuse to escape when the going got rough.

Wow, kid #2 is easier on the mom, I thought with glee.

Well, I should have known better than to brag. Or get too far ahead of myself. Because when it comes to babies, they really love to f-ck with you. Just when you think you’ve got it down….

Emmett is now 8 months old and I’m more exhausted than ever. Granted, it could be because I listened to my friend Cassandra’s advice to “Mom-Up” and sleep train him, thus getting rid of my night village. (Damn you C!) So now, he sort of sleeps through the night. You know, the usual–consistently inconsistent. (That should be the slogan for babies, btw).

The mornings though are when I really get screwed. He is so excited about moving (almost crawling), not to mention he is an incredibly active baby, that now when he wakes up, there is no sleeping. He nurses and is ready to M-O-V-E. This boy waits for no one.

What sucks even more is he and Fia have swapped time zones. Em wakes up at 5 or 5:30 and she sleeps until 7. So I’m up before the sun, done nursing in 20 minutes, and attempting to think about the day ahead while Fia and Phil snooze away.  Phil has very little sympathy. Why should he? He bore the brunt of early mornings for months while I smugly enjoyed what I thought was mother nature’s free mom pass. Ha.

Cassandra, I now hate your term Mom-Up. I want to Mom-Down. Somehow though it just doesn’t have the same ring.

Emmett–be glad you are so damn cute and happy. If you weren’t, your mom would ignore your early morning wake-up call.

I know this is one of many examples of the tables getting turned on moms, so please feel free to share your own sad tale. I may as well brace myself for more.

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Now for the Positive Boob Comments

Saturday, May 12th, 2012

Ah, the boob. Between the Time Magazine story and my blog, I’m now actually sick of my breasts. In light of that, I thought I should post some of the positive comments from my controversial post (ie: Why The Boob Rocks).

In all seriousness, I got to thinking that while I’m opinionated, I also like to consider myself fair. And in my rebuttal post, (My Boobs Are Taking a Hit. Ouch!) I only singled out the negative comments. My hypnotherapist would be disappointed.

Here are some of my favorites from you guys.

(#1) Breastfeeding rocks !! It helps and makes things easier & it goes even better if you have a husband that helps out & don’t see it as a job but as team work!  I love my Boobs & Husband!

(#2) It forced me to stop and sit down, rest and think. That was priceless for my sanity. Now that I have #2, same story.

(#3) I’m breastfeeding #4 and feel exactly the same way as the author. Sometimes I feel like it’s the only one on one time I get with him! So I AM going to enjoy nursing him, even if that means my three other boys have to learn patience and my husband has to get up to make breakfast.

(#4) Thank you for this article. My husband and I are trying for baby #2 and this helps me to put everything in perspective. I was worried that I would drown in extra childcare duties but maybe it won’t be so bad after all! LOL. And I SO miss nursing. Excited to continue with the next child.

What’s funny is my blog became a huge debate on a) how the husband should or shouldn’t help and b) my selfishness in pushing for my husband to help/wanting to have alone time with my infant and c) breastfeeding while having a glass of wine.

Alcohol is always a controversial topic when it comes to the boob. You already know where I stand. But here are a few more commenters who feel the same as I do. And let’s all be grateful we live in a country where we CAN speak our minds, as opposed to a place like, say, Iran (where I would clearly be dead by now). So cheers ladies!

(#5) While pregnant at a nursing class at NY Presbyterian Hospital in NYC I happily learned–As long as you don’t pass out, drinking while nursing is fine! Breasts are filters. Placentas are sieves. Drink Up!

(#6) Omg ladies, get a grip! Yes sometimes the toddler has to run amok a bit while I nurse #2 but he hasn’t burnt the house down or eaten the dog yet. A glass of wine isn’t going to hurt anyone- moms and docs around the world agree. This is my life too- but husband travels so I do a lot of juggling. It was meant to be funny- not as a “everyone do as I do or you’re a failure”! Lighten up!

(#7) Get a grip ladies! I found the humor in this article, so should you all. My husband was deployed for the first 8 months of our daughter’s life and I’m finally getting a 36 hour break while he takes her to a family wedding and I stay home. Am I selfish? Probably. Am I ecstatic that I’m finally getting a break? Hell yes. I also have a drink while or before or even after I breast feed my daughter (yes we are still breast feeding at 13 months) and she is perfectly healthy, happy, and active. Relax, have a glass of wine yourself, and find the humor.

(#8) Geez girls some of us seem to have our negativity hats on today.Instead of thinking she’s being selfish try thinking she’s teaching her daughter to be more patient, more self soothing and self sufficient (skills she’ll need as she get older) as for her husband…let’s see…ummm…she’s letting him be a dad! Raising kids is frustrating even for us Mom’s and 80% of the time someones not going to step in for us and take over as she clearly says she does for her husband. If this was a piece written by a father who admitted he took a little quite time every day under the guise of doing something else (honestly do you think their “guy stuff” is all work and no play? My husband has admitted it’s not and he does some of it to get away from the kids too). Your comments would be quite different and I’m pretty sure the word selfish wouldn’t have been uttered.

(#9) Being a mom IS a JOB. Regardless is he works or not, he should help. That’s the problem with a lot of dads, they thing they can just push the children off on the mothers because most women fall into that “oh well my husband works” crap. Even if moms do work the men still get a get-out-of-jail-free card simply because they’re men. Did any of you ever think that…hmmm…before baby #2 she did spend time with child #1 and now she wants to give baby #2 as much as attention as she can to bond with it more while giving the dad and their daughter time to bond? Didn’t you read where she said while her husband goes back to sleep she plays with THEM (being BOTH her children). And drinking ONE GLASS of wine is harmless!

(#10) How dare you call her a “Lazy mom” just because she likes spending one-on-one time with her children, and yes she may be getting a break but she is still bonding with her new child while giving dad and daughter a chance to bond.

(#11) Last feeding happens, then wine time! Best time of the night.

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My Boobs Are Taking A Hit! Ouch!

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

I had no idea my boobs would stir up such controversy. Maybe I’ll get implants next. In lieu of all this, I decided to just let Fia, my 2 1/2 year old, take over feeding Emmett the bottle, while I lay drunk, passed out on the couch. Plus, this way neither Phil nor I have to parent. But wait; will I still be called “lazy” for putting my toddler in charge? Maybe…

I’m referring to my post, Why the Boob Rocks. Most people who commented (particularly on the Facebook link) “got” that it was a humorous article on getting the most bang for your, well, breast. As in, use it to your advantage when you can. Why not? You can’t be called neglectful (though I was actually) for feeding your infant while your husband feeds your toddler. You can’t be called selfish (though I was. Hmm) for having some alone time with your infant–helping him survive, ie: eat--while your husband deals with the household. And god forbid you have a glass of wine while doing all this feeding nonsense. That set off a sh-tstorm.

Here are a couple favorites:

(#1) “That’s sick is about all I can say. Drinking while feeding your child. Being lazy while the man does all the work.”

(#2) “I have 2 under two and have nursed and bottle fed. it sounds like she is finding an excuse to ignore the daughter. drinking while nursing? wtf? yes, it would take some time before the alcohol entered the breast milk but nonetheless you are promoting a dangerous habit. Just because you “can” drink does not mean you should. Think about all the young and new mothers that are reading this article for advice and do not know how to “safely” consume alcohol while nursing (I personally would never risk drinking and nursing despite what research says). This is an irresponsible article that is not helpful to parents with kids close in age.”

(#3) “I am all for breastfeeding, i breastfed my son for a year..but to disregard your other child completely and use nursing as an excuse not to interact with your child. Disgusts me!”

Yup (#3), that’s exactly what I do. Fia who?

Here is my rebuttal:

For all the teetotalers out there–RELAX! I’m not getting sh-t faced and nursing my child. If you drink a glass of wine while feeding them, by the time it gets into your breastmilk–filtered by Mother Nature– Hello!–they are done feeding. As some of the more reasonable commentor’s pointed out,  doctors/pediatricians/lactation consultants all say it’s fine in moderation. And drinking a glass is moderation. I would go as far to say 2 glasses, but I’m afraid I’ll have to don a bulletproof vest. LA is too hot for that.

I think it’s amazing that my husband is not only able–but also WILLING to be a team in parenthood. I’m selfish because I want to nurse my child and let’s see–maybe enjoy it? While he gets time with our toddler? That’s whacked. I think the moms who viewed it this way must be martyrs, humorless or both. Why else would you be so negative?

A few brought up drinking wine with Emmett’s reflux issues. It’s a legitimate point and I thank you for your concern. Here’s why it’s not part of his barf equation:

If you boob feed a baby at say 6 pm, take a few sips of wine, finish the feed, finish the wine, then don’t feed him for another 6 hours (as it’s in the night now, and he is going longer stretches) he isn’t getting any alcohol. Plus, let’s not forget breastmilk is a filter. Many of you aren’t giving Mother Nature the credit she deserves. But just to be cautious, I time it strategically. If on occasion I have more than one glass within a feed time, then I give him a bottle of pre-pumped breast milk. (Fia will now be taking over that duty.)

The other thing: his reflux is most extreme during the early morning feed. I promise I’m not downing Bloody Mary’s. So these theories that I’m harming my baby with a glass of wine are simply unfounded and silly. Moms, lighten up! Enjoy yourselves! However that may be…

I think Time Magazine missed the boat on breast feeding your 3-year old. They should have had the mom holding a wine glass in this incredibly disturbing cover picture. But I’m not touching that one! At least not yet.

Yikes!!

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Another Baby Barfer? Really?

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

I was afraid of this. Emmett is becoming a barfer. AARRRGGGGHHHH. Fia had the worst reflux. But I thought I dodged the bullet with Emmett. Reflux usually shows up around 2-3 weeks. Each week that passed with Emmett I felt more and more hopeful. I mean, he was a spitter. But not a barfer. There’s a difference.

Then, about 2 weeks ago, just shy of his 3 month birthday, more and more milk kept coming up. I knew I was in trouble when Cleo, our nanny, walked in with 3 changes of clothes. Damn.

Here is the weird thing. He only barfs up my breast milk. Not formula. Fia was the exact same way. I took her to 3 different pediatricians.  I even took a saturated barf cloth to one. “Here, feel this. This is from one feed!” I sobbed. We’re talking cups of barf. They all told me the same thing: since she was gaining weight, it wasn’t technically reflux. Therefore, they wouldn’t treat it as such. But wait, the reason she’s gaining is because I have to feed her all the time. She is also in terrible pain, constantly scrunching her body up. And all the barfing certainly can’t feel good on her throat.

Their stance was to keep her on the boob and deal with it. I’m still resentful.

I ordered some herbal concoction that–no kidding–was black as tar. It is supposed to help reflux. Um, okay, well, if it doesn’t, guess what you get? Black stains all over your furniture. Genius. That lasted all of one feed. I experimented with other things too, but I finally just gave up.

At 4 months, overwrought with lack of sleep and full of misery, I gave up breast feeding. I drove to the store and bought formula. It was an instant game-changer. I had a freezer full of breast milk that I would try to get down week after week. Same thing every time. Copious amounts of barf. I don’t think it was an allergy either. I had experimented with eliminating dairy, citrus, eggs–you name it–from my diet. Nothing worked. My mom said I was the same way.

With Emmett, I am determined to not give up breast feeding so early. I took him to our doctor here and explained what was happening. (I picked a specific doctor at the practice because she’s not old school like some of them.) After hearing my story, she theorized that maybe since breast milk isn’t as heavy as formula, both he and Fia needed something with more weight–or less acidic. It’s exactly what my mom and I had talked about 2 years before.

This pediatrician, unlike others I’ve had, prescribed Zantac. She also gave me some probiotics. Instead of discounting me, she listened. For that, I am incredibly grateful. She believes that it is worth staying on the boob with a little medicine rather than switching to formula. Or at least trying to see if it makes a difference. Whew.

We are on day 5 of Zantac and so far his spitting up has greatly diminished. I’m holding my breath and crossing my fingers. He also isn’t crunching up in pain as often. My goal is to boob feed him for at least 6 months, maybe a year. He’s my last baby. Plus, there are some major advantages (besides the medical aspect) to breastfeeding. I’ll save that for another blog.

I wrote earlier this week about trusting your mom instinct when it comes to studies and diagnoses and all that jazz. I’m glad I get a second chance on this one with my little guy.

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Paci? No Paci? Surprise: The Rules Are Changing. Again.

Tuesday, May 1st, 2012

I’ve never bought into the whole nipple confusion thing. Maybe it’s because my babies latched on immediately to both bottle and boob (this, following a sea of drugs from labor and c-sections). And perhaps I’m bitter from the natural community scaring me senseless as I went into labor with Fia. Tales of drugs, pacifiers and bottles were all the ways your baby wouldn’t latch on, despite scientific evidence to the contrary (at least with labor drugs, like the epidural). This week I got a slight chuckle out of the latest study: pacifiers actually promote breastfeeding. Ha!

Before I get too smug, I will echo what my fellow blogger, Berit wrote in her post on this (click here to read her blog): Rules are forever changing–and yes, it is maddening! Each study seems to contradict another one, which contradicts another one, until it comes back full circle and negates them all. So I won’t smirk…yet. What I will say (and echoing Berit again) is to go with your mom gut. Here’s why:

If I had listened to the nipple confusion thing, Phil would have never given Emmett or Fia a bottle for the first 6 weeks. It would have been all me, all the time. I would have been frustrated and completely tethered. I have mom friends who have been tethered for the first year because they didn’t introduce a bottle those first few weeks. By the time it was “right” to introduce one, it was too late. The babies refused and only took the boob. I think that can lead to some of us moms (uh-em…myself…thus hypnotherapy) becoming martyrs about having to “do it all.” In this day and age, with dads pulling almost equal weight (ha!), let them into the world of feeding.

Phil and I decided he’d give a bottle because it would be good bonding time. It’s his ritual to give the last bottle before bedtime, as I slip away and get a jump start on my sleep. Neither of us would give that up for anything. He loves it. As do I. And I’m sure it helps the babies know their dad even more.

What’s funny about the no-pacifier-now-maybe-debunked-theory is that for both my births, the nurses passed them out like candy at a parade. It was like Flying Nurses–they’d breeze through, chucking them into cribs. Okay, not really. But the paci’s were everywhere. Then, inevitably, a lactation consultant would come in and give me the nipple confusion spiel. Since Fia’s birth left me feeling like I had been hit by a bus, I was too confused to care. With Emmett, I chose to ignore.  We’ve all been better off for it. In fact, I am trying to get Emmett more addicted to his pacifier. Fia sucked on hers like a lollipop. Still does at nap time. She’ll go to PA (Pacifiers Anonymous) soon. Emmett on the other hand tends to suck for a bit, then spit it out. Come on baby, you got addictive genes in this family. Use them!

To put the entire feeding and soothing process (NO PACIFIERS!) on the mom not only becomes exhausting, but I think it can also rob a Dad or other loved ones of special moments they might not get otherwise. Not to mention the risk of the baby refusing everything but the boob.

So I take “observational” studies like this with a grain of salt. Like Berit, I am going with my instinct. It has served me well thus far.

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