Thursday, February 11, 2010

Oh, my poor nipples

Alright, it ain't so great over here.

When I said in my last post that the right side is "ouchy" I probably should have picked a stronger, more accurate word, like "torturous".

We occasionally have some of the most wonderful, virtually pain free feedings, but mostly very painful latches on the right side. The bad latches cause me lots of anxiety, make me cry, make me say "FUDGE" very loudly because I'm trying not to say the word I actually want to say around the kid. He's a great little nurser on the left, but when I try him on the right, he acts like a rabid dog, almost viciously attacking my nipple and screaming and crying if I don't immediately give it to him. He will actually head butt me if he gets too upset.

And I feel so defeated when we have a bad feeding. It hurts me worse emotionally than physically, because I really, really want to do this. The thought of quiting just kills me. But it really is bad and I figure the only reason I've even stayed with it this long is that I'm really stubborn.

So I called the LC yesterday, pretty much in tears and made an appointment for today (she apparently never got my crying voicemail about my bloody nipple from the weekend). Anyhow, she's off Thursdays and Fridays (and on the weekend) unless I want to pay her to make a home vist, OR I could make an appointment with the nurse that works at the pharmacy for the next day. I was hesitant because I wasn't sure if this other nurse was a real LC or not, but I needed the help. And I haven't been exactly thrilled with the LC, so I make the appointment with the nurse.

Oh, I like this other lady so much better. She seemed to be so much more helpful. Maybe it's just because my problems are better defined but I just don't think LC1 was doing it for me (and I really didn't appreciate the unreturned phone call and she also admonished me for NOT cosleeping with the baby).

As soon as I showed LC2 my right nipple she told me, without a moment of hesitation that I cannot keep feeding on that nipple. I started crying cause I was sad but I knew she was right and I was also kinda glad to have someone tell me it was ok to stop using it. My poor nipple has been thrashed by my wonderful baby. Now my nipple is on "modified bed rest" for at least 48 hours. I rented a hospital grade pump to use on it and to help give the left one a little rest too. I'm supposed to finger feed him what I express.

I also have to give him a pacifier now. I'd been avoiding one because I was worried about latch issues (really?) and nipple confusion, but he's comfort sucking on me and she's doesn't want any of that and unless I want a screaming child, I have to give him a substitute. She wasn't worried about the latch issues since he ACTUALLY DOES HAVE A GOOD LATCH (even though I'm a mangled mess) and nipple confusion shouldn't be such an issue she thinks because he's not getting any food from it.

She wasn't happy about my left side but since there isn't any pain when he feeds from it she's letting me continue with it. It truly does look and feel better than it did a couple of days ago.

We practiced latching some more. She literally smashed the baby into me with a speed that looks like it would give the kid whiplash, but that appears to be what is necessary and he didn't seem to mind it. I'm hoping that some really excellent latching over the next 2 days will pay off when we start back on the right. And when we do start back on the right, we are to take it slow and still limit the feedings on it.

After my LC1 visit in the hospital I kinda felt better but not great, and I was still tolerating a lot more pain when feeding than I should have. But I really did feel much better after this meeting with LC2 because I don't know that I could have made it one single more feeding on my right side before the appointment.

And my first pumping session went pretty well. I got a whole 2oz in just 15 minutes. However, I do have a bit of a hicky on my areola now, and I think I need to get a smaller horn or that's going to be a problem too. Now to try finger feeding when he wakes up.


In other news, he has been gaining weight like a good little piggy... he was discharged Monday the 1st and weighed 7lb 10oz and at McSoothy's office on Monday the 8th he had gained 18oz. However the LC wasn't completely convinced because McSoothy's office uses an older weighted balance style scale and not a digital (the weighted balance style are apparently very inaccurate), but still a good gain. We have another ped appointment on Monday with his official pediatrician and we will see what his weight is then.

We had newborn portraits taken Monday. I'm so excited to see the pictures. She hasn't gotten the proofs up yet but I'm sure we got some good ones.

And I must be crazy, because I'm letting my parents come up and visit for most of the day tomorrow. My mom may be nuts, but she's pretty good with babies and if someone wants to hold him or play with him and let me sleep, fine!

And I'm terribly behind with blog reading. I've been stuck to the recliner with a baby latched to me all week. Some where I read that newborns sleep 16-18 hours per day... to that I say Bull-fudging-crap.


Oh and a request for BFing links... I don't have a lot of help to offer here. One of the best BFing sites on the internet is Kelly Mom but I've gotten help from articles on Babycenter and ivillage and forum users on Diaper Swappers.


Michelle said...

I hope your 48 hour break helps with the pain and you soon have totally pain free feedings! That sounds horrible.
Oh and I agree. Kristopher never slept like that for me!
Good luck with your parents visiting!

Celia said...

Everybody is scaring me. I had a dream the other day that eh was here and I forgot to feed him for two days.

I am so sorry you are in pain Amanda. And that lady is a fudgehead for berating you for not cosleeping. What a jerk.

I don't have any kind of advice at all. I wish I did. Feel better.

Sophie said...

Well, I sure hope you get to feeling better soon. It sounds unbelievably painful :/. Good for you for sticking to it, I'm not sure if I could... but I'm gonna try, much easier for me to say that now though :P. I recently asked my mom a few questions about nursing and she mentioned that she'd actually call la leche league for help, I had no idea we could do that. Not sure if that would help in this case, seems like nursing issues should be dealt with in person, but I just wanted to throw that out there. Take care and get some rest if you can!

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry that you are having such pain. I know exactly what you are dealing with, down to the side. My right nipple is wrecked now and each feeding is excruciating. I had a blocked duct on that side on Monday and Tuesday, and now the nipple is even worse. I don't know how we are expected to nurse through the pain. And, I'm already using nipple shields, so I have a little protection from the direct suction, and it's still killing me.
I hope that giving that nipple a break does the trick. I may try that as well. You are doing a great job. Hang in there if you can. If not, you have given it a damn good try.

Kate said...

I'm glad to hear you got some better advice from LC2. She sounds much more the thing, I have to say. Hope the poor nipples recover quickly!

amanda said...

Yes, yes, and yes. I had a milk blister in the early days that was horrifically painful and just.would.not.go.away. I cried. I cussed. It was miserable.

But it did eventually get better. Nursing did eventually become pain free.

I hope your pumping break helps. Hang in there!