Category Archives: breastfeeding

rambling thoughts & labor day weekend recap

Today we discovered a fun game.  Forest makes various squawks, baby grunts and groans, and other cooing noises. When I imitated his noise, he would look at me, smile and laugh.  I think he is much louder (sometimes piercingly loud) when he’s overtired and/or teething, both of which happen pretty often.

I had to work at the library for several hours today because of a flood caused by a failed HVAC unit, so I didn’t get quite as much weekend baby time as usual.  But I’m really enjoying the time I do have with him.

Forest has quite a wild approach to nursing when he is overtired and more distractible than usual.  I told Donald that it’s like nursing a monkey-octopus.  He wiggles, kicks very hard, repeatedly, and repeatedly detaches and re-attaches, often pulling away with a very rough breaking of the suction.  I can’t help myself from laughing sometimes, because he is just so wound up it is kind of cute.  Sometimes he ends the nursing session by partially falling asleep and biting which can be quite painful.  But more often he’ll fall asleep nursing following about 30 minutes of what we call sleep-nursing which is very sweet–he seems so peaceful and content when he sleep-nurses.

Aunt Evelyn and Cousin Arianna playing with Forest at the YMCA over Labor Day Weekend

My father-in-law, my sister-in-law Evelyn, and my niece Arianna came to visit last weekend over the holiday weekend.  Evelyn and I took the kids to the YMCA water park.  It was SO MUCH FUN!  I intend to go back often.  I am a longtime YMCA member, but this is the first time I visited the Y since Forest was born.

Mommy, Forest, and Cousin Arianna at the YMCA pool over Labor Day weekend

I’m also hoping to do a mommy & baby water class if I take off on Friday and work Saturday instead sometimes.  Maybe eventually I can get back into yoga.  I really miss the yoga instructor at the Edmond YMCA–she is wonderful.

Charles and Evelyn watched Forest on Sunday while Donald and I went on a birding trip and lunch.  Even though this outing included recycling and grocery shopping, it was as close to a date as we’ve gotten in six+ months, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

When we came home, my father-in-law announced that all had gone well, except for one tantrum on the way home from a walk, and that Forest had been climbing the tree.  Although I was initially horrified, Charles did know what he was doing.  After all, he managed to raise five children quite successfully.  When I expressed my initial surprise that he put our six-month old in the tree, my father-in-law said, “Well, you know, if you have five or six children it doesn’t matter so much if you lose a couple here or there.”  Have I mentioned that my father-in-law is incorrigible and often hysterically funny?


five months old today!

Donald has a state Audubon Council meeting today.  I could have gone to part of it with the baby, but I opted to stay home this morning.  It’s been fun having Forest all to myself for the first time in a long while.  I’ve enjoyed changing diapers, playing with him, and seeing how different he is from when I used to be home with him all the time before returning to work.

One difference is that I was able to quickly clean the kitchen up while he played with toys and later was resting (but not napping) in his crib with his rainforest mobile going.  He was making some sounds part of the time, but it mostly sounded like talking with not too much fussing.  When he started to fuss, I changed a diaper then moved him to the crib.  I was truly amazed that I was able to finish my modest kitchen cleaning plans while Forest cooed and relaxed in his crib before he cried and wanted to nurse to sleep for a nap.

This afternoon, I’m headed to Midwest City for lunch with my Ladies’ Night Out friends, three girls I’ve known since junior high school.  Forest is coming with me, and I am eager for them to see how much he has grown since we last got together.

Tonight, we are tentatively planning to introduce a small amount of rice cereal as Forest’s first solid food.  I think it may be time since Forest has been showing interest in his parents’ food for the last few weeks.  He has been exclusively breastfed and fed with expressed breast milk for these first five months, and I’m a little reluctant to let go of his lovely milky breath and non-smelly stools that exclusively breastfed babies have.  We could put it off a few more weeks until he is 6 months old, since the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months, but I think that if we supplement with just a small amount of solids for the next month that would be fine.  The pediatrician gave us the okay to start solids at 4 months.


mommy returning to work

Tomorrow is my first day back at work.  I’m mostly looking forward to working.  I’m not worried too much about Forest since he will have his father and grandmother taking care of him tomorrow.  I’m mostly worried about him missing his mommy.  Lots of milk in the freezer to go in bottles, but not quite like mommy.  We do know that he will readily take bottles, so that is a good thing at least.

I’m also worried about getting enough sleep to be functional.  Forest was up three times last night and I was having some anxiety issues and it took me awhile to fall asleep.  So, I ended up with about 3.5 hours of sleep.  I’ve been more routinely getting 5-6 hours of sleep when he gets up 1-2 times overnight, and that helps me feel a lot better.

Several people have told me that a teaspoon or two of rice cereal helps babies sleep better at night, and his doctor recommends not starting that until 4 months, although several moms have said they started much earlier.  And the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusively breastfeeding until 6 months.  But I wonder if the American Academy of Pediatrics Board are all waking up at 2 am, 4am and 5:30am for feedings?

2-month pediatrician visit at 11 weeks old, today

baby update: Forest visited the pediatrician today. He now weighs 14lbs 12ozs and is 24.5 inches long. No wonder his daddy’s elbow is shot from lifting him!

He has a mild fever and is not feeling well / was fussy following vaccinations.  He was crying with a tone I’ve never heard before, and he was briefly inconsolable, but we finally got him to relax, and we gave him a dose of Tylenol which brought his fever down.

Forest went to bed, and I’m staying up to pump–trying to lay in a milk supply to get ready to return to work.  I don’t like staying up so late to pump since the baby is already in bed–it would be nice to go to sleep myself.  But it is hard to pump during the day because I never know how long he is going to nap, that is IF he naps.

Nursing fussiness checklist

I’m hoping to figure out why Forest often fusses, turns his head, unlatches, and cries while nursing sometimes.  When I’m too sleep deprived or otherwise not feeling well, I always think it’s because I’m running out of milk and starving my baby, but his pediatrician and my lactation consultant have both said that he is growing well and is healthy.

Even if others tell me all is well, it is still very disconcerting to have my baby crying at my breast–the very place that usually soothes him when nothing else will.  When I’m seeing things more clearly and reading his behavior more carefully, I can narrow his behavior down to one of these problems:

  1. currently working on producing a stool
  2. intestinal gas
  3. needs to be burped–gas bubble in tummy
  4. ready to have his diaper changed NOW
  5. very tired and wants to go to sleep
  6. frustration with my nipple after unlatching
  7. milk supply currently low because he’s been nursing every hour
  8. milk not letting down fast enough because mommy is nervous
I think that if I just go through these possibilities when this happens, that will help me avoid the crushing belief that I am starving my child.  We see his pediatrician on Thursday, so I’m looking forward to asking him about the reflux problem and this nursing-fussiness behavior.