Breastfeeding #2

So I thought today would be a good a day as any to update you on my breast feeding journey.

I have now struggled through the blanched nipple thing, perseverance and brute force to ensure Noah was latching properly and not giving into lazy feeding at night has won out… HOORAH! Although my nipples are still a little sore, especially at the end of the day and when they get cold, they are so much better and the relief is unreal. It’s taken some time but we’re getting there.

I’ve bought new bras from good old M&S to give them some much needed ‘leg room’ whilst still keeping Lansinoh in business with their amazing Lanolin nipple cream, I really can’t recommend it highly enough, Noah doesn’t bother about it and in fact it doubled up as a moisturiser for him when he was born with really dry, flaking skin as I didn’t want to use olive oil on his hands in case he ingested it.

It really is the most amazing feeling to breast feed. The connection you feel with your baby is beautiful and when you see the weight piling on and know that it’s all down to nature and your wonderful and clever breasts the sense of pride is rather overwhelming. I’m so SO pleased I struggled through that dark time, I could very easily have given up as there really was/is no quick fix for that problem.

So it pains me to say that in the early hours of this morning, after having an A* report from the doctor yesterday about our progress, I noticed that one of my breasts didn’t seem to be ‘letting down’ after he fed. By four this morning it was so engorged I could barely touch it. I let Noah feed from it again and massaged it to release any possible blocked ducts, no joy. He had a large and satisfying feed yet still it was swollen, hard and painful to the touch. Out came the cabbage leaves and hot water bottle once more and I sat waiting til 8.30 so I could ring the doctor.

The advice I’ve received from Twitter and Facebook has been amazing and I thank everyone for it, not only did you help me in short term pain relieving suggestions you also *virtually* wiped my tears and hugged me until I felt less upset. I didn’t think it was mastitis as I didn’t have a fever (though I have felt off colour these past few days) but a MW friend said it sounded possible and to visit doctor.

My OH was wonderful, despite having to get off to work he filled another hot water bottle and made me a cup of tea whilst I got dressed when I could. Offering to take time off to rush me up to the doctor as soon as I had a time.

For once I can honestly say the doctor’s receptionist was helpful and kind. As I burst into tears on the thought of a late afternoon appointment she got me in at 0910. Noah having a well timed feed and change, no waiting time on arrival to surgery and a lovely lady doctor just made my morning complete. She took one look and diagnosed mastitis. Great. Anyway, antibiotics should kick in within 48 hours so fingers crossed I’ll be back on form by the end of the week as I am braving baby massage class on Friday and really don’t want to cancel.

So here I am, having thought I’d cracked this breast feeding malarkey again I find myself struggling. However I am aware that in 48 hours I should be clear which is comforting.

What am I doing?

I have been given a week’s course of clarithromycin which should kick in within 48 hours.
I am currently harbouring a small cabbage patch in my bra…. Sexy!
Will submerge swollen bosom in hot water later and have a hot water bottle on 24 hour call.
I’m rocking the rugby ball baby feeding position to try and drain that quadrant of breast. Having just mastered one feeding position Noah is staring up at me with a look of utter confusion, though I’m sure he’s grateful he doesn’t have to stare at my unkempt armpit for a bit.
Feeding as usual, alternating breasts, but I’m massaging breast throughout his feeds.
Paracetamol.
Rest… Sod the washing, we’re going to snuggle all day.

I’m hoping this is it now. I’m hoping it’ll ease up and give me a break.

I’m not going to be beaten!

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