Friday, 31 January 2014

Fabulous Friday

Happy Fabulous Friday all! What's fabulous about today is finding a great lactation consultant. This woman may have just restored some of my lost sanity!
Some people might think it's weird to pay a strange woman $120 to come to your house and     play with your breasts and baby but not me - I would have happily paid her more! I had a bit of a break through on my own trying breast feeding lying down last night after discovering I had several blocked ducts in my left breast. It was quite painful so I hadn't been feeding from that breast all day. But, when I read my breastfeeding bible, I found out feeding is the best way to clear it and lying down is a good option to make the most of gravity.

Lying down helped me to get better attachment and took the pressure off my back which was great. But I knew it wouldn't be practical for all feeds. I still needed help - enter Stacie.

We spent the first 30 minutes going through my medical history, the details of Sticky's birth and the specific problems I was having. She reassured me that the approach I'd taken was spot on and I was doing a good job. Even though she's a total stranger, I felt calmer being reassured I was on track.

It was then time to get Sticky up so she could see us feeding together. She noticed my breasts needed to be lifted more so I had to increase my boob lift from a rolled up face washer to a hand towel. She also noted my nipple shield was too big and suggested I get a smaller size. The biggest improvement was in Sticky's placement. I had to put pressure on her back and tilt her head down so she could get more milk. It made an instant difference.

She also suggested switching sides regularly to help keep her awake and doing regular breast compressions to help the flow of milk. I think I may have been compressing a little too hard as my boobs were rather sore by the end of it but it will just take some practice to get the hang of it.

I feel like I need to be an octopus to be able to do everything I need to do. I just don't feel like I have enough hands to hold and position everything I need to. But, Stacie assured me we just needed a bit of practice and things would become easier. It now means I can't multi-task because I don't have a spare hand to check my mobile or work the Ipad. This afternoon's feed went for 1.5 hours and I'm sure it's because I wasn't giving it my full attention. Well, now I will. 

My one concern with all of this is the pain I'm now starting to feel in my wrists. Lots of women get carpel tunnel in their wrists from breast feeding and just carrying the baby around. You don't realise what weird angles you need to contort your wrist into to breast feed, between holding the baby, supporting their head, and putting your pinky in their mouth to stop their suction, there are many ways your wrist can easily be strained. Next stop is the pharmacy for wrist guards!

But, I'm feeling much better for having her come and show me some improvements to make. It's amazing to realise that little things can make such a huge difference so I'm happy to give it a crack. It can only make things better, so long as I do everything properly. But, the beauty of it all is I can always get her back if need be. So thank god for all the Stacies in the world. They are truly fabulous! 

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