Luckily Caroline, the assistant midwife, is a nursing mom. So Karen asked me if I would be opposed to giving Nugget some of her milk to tide him over until my milk came in. Now at 6 in the morning after a LONG labor when she said 'would you be adverse to the idea of Caroline giving us some milk?' my mind immediately thought 'Caroline is going to nurse my baby?'. I was definitely too sleep deprived to have any objections to any suggestions.
In fact, I had a small tear and Karen asked me if I would like to have it stitched up. She said it was really small and straight and right in the middle of my perineum so that it would most likely heal just fine on its own. But if I wanted to have it stitched I could. I turned to everyone in the room and said 'what do you think? should I get it stitched?'. Karen could tell I had met my decision-making limit. FYI she said she didn't think I really needed them, in case you were curious.
Caroline came back into the room with a little baggie of milk and Karen pulled a little bit into a syringe and we fed it to Nugget. It is possible that 6 months ago the idea of using someone else's milk to feed my baby would have grossed me out. But, let me tell you, it is amazing how your perspective changes even with just a few minutes of motherhood. You would rip your heart out of your chest if it was necessary to help your little snuggler. Good thing that wasn't necessary.
In addition to giving a little bit of Caroline's milk, Karen started me on a milk regime. I pumped every 3 hours and nursed Jack every 3 hours. So every hour and a half I was hooked up to something, either a baby or a machine. You know how you hear women complain about the first few days of nursing and their areoles hurting like an M-er F-er? Well I think I got twice the action of a typical lady. Let me tell you, there is nothing like looking down at your little one encouraging him to latch and then wanting to yell and scream as soon as he actually attaches. Of course you don't want him to think that he is causing you pain, then he won't want to nurse. So you are trying to smile down at him and say 'such a good job buddy' but all you really want to do is run away from this little person who feels like they are cutting your nipple off with a dull exacto blade.
But it turns out it was totally worth it! This momma's milk came in and fast. Before long I could hear Nugget's long big gulps and the first 4 milliliters of milk that I pulled out of my pump...I have just never been so proud of my boobs ever! And this is coming from a ex-Barista who used these babies to pull in a hundred dollars in tips from just a few hours a week of work....granted the coffee shop I worked in was in the engineering building on campus. Those boys like cleavage, let me tell you what.
So in came the milk and Nugget went bonkers. He's been eating like a competition hot dog contestant. When the midwife weighed him the day after he was born he was down to 6lbs 8oz. It is pretty typical for babies to lose weight the first few days, but again this was a dangerous drop considering his condition. Karen had me keep track of how often he was eating and how much I was pumping on a chart and she asked me to call a lactation consultant to get her opinion of how we were doing.
The lactation consultant said that if Jack's weight wasn't up at our 3-day visit on Thursday that she would need to come out and observe how he was eating. Karen weighed him on Thursday and he was up to 6lbs 10oz! and she was excited to hear that I was pumping and feeding him enough to not need anymore of Caroline's milk. It looked like we were out of danger. Nugget continued to nurse like a champ and I was able to stop pumping and recording all of our feedings.
Karen weighing Jack at our 3 day visit on Thursday.
Jack's little cheeks started to fill out and his belly showed a little bit of roundness. At our one-week appointment we all started taking guesses as to what his weight would be up to. I guessed 7lbs 2oz, Karen thought 7lbs, and Andy's mom guessed 7lbs 1oz. When Karen put him in the sling she said 'Holy Crap! He's got us all beat. 7lbs 7oz!". She was so excited and told me I was doing an awesome job.
Testing his hearing. Both ears are good!
Flying Baby at one-week visit.
So that's my milk-a-paloosa story. I am excited to see how much he has gained at his two week appointment on Monday. I am guessing he will be well into the 8lb range. You guys are welcome to place your guesses. Another fun fact about your milk coming in and just having had a baby is that emotions are extremely fragile. I can cry at the drop of a hat it seems. Don't worry, I am not sad or anything, but definitely emotional.
Andy and I were watching The Pacific (which for the record I have seen before). Andy was talking about how Jack would be an amazing Marine and as I sat there holding him and watching a brutal scene, suddenly it was too overwhelming for me. I asked him if we could turn it off and watch something else. 'You've seen this before' he responded. Then the tears started spilling over and I said 'please can we just watch something else?'. Poor guy didn't know what hit him. He switched it over to Northern Exposure and then proceeded to tell me how he would have to tell his best friends about this.
I also cried at the airport dropping Bret off and I also burst into tears last night when Andy's mom kissed me goodbye. What a cry baby? I seriously don't recognize myself. Karen said it is pretty typical for you to get emotional when your milk comes in. I am going to blame it on the tenderness of my boobs. Yeah that is what it is! hahaha.
Okay here is what you really want. More Nugget Pictures.
Talking to Grandma Cathi
Smiling at Aunt Bret
The pictures I was so excited to take, Jack and Lincoln!