This morning, I took Gage in for his 4 month well visit. I haven’t been looking forward to it for weeks now. I knew he was going to get shots, but I also knew that I was going to have to admit defeat on breastfeeding.
A few weeks ago, I posted that I was looking for Low Iron Infant Formula. Since that post, much has happened.
Gage will nurse for 30 – 45 minutes at each feeding. As soon as he’s “done,” he starts screaming. I’m not talking about just crying, either. These are ear-piercing-gimme-more-food type screams. Every time he nurses, I follow up with a bottle. He drinks 6 – 8 ounces every.single.time. If I go all day without nursing him, I can only pump 1 – 2 ounces total. I’m just not producing anything at all this time around.
It’s apparent to me that I am just not producing enough breastmilk to give him what he needs. And that breaks my heart. Breastfeeding is so important to me.
The nurse weighed Gage, and he tagged in at 14 pounds, 3 ounces. He’s 25.5 inches long, so that puts him on the chunkier side of the growth chart. (Even though he’s in the 50th percentile for weight and 78th percentile for length. Not sure how that works.) Anyway, apparently all the formula he’s been getting is working.
(By the way, he’s doing just fine on regular formula now. It just took a few days for his system to get used to it. All is well, and no low iron infant formula is needed!)
I told the doctor exactly what I mentioned above about him not getting enough. She knows how important breastfeeding is to me, so she was very kind. She said this may just be God’s way of telling me I need to take a break. She reminded me that I can still nurse him at night and in the morning if I want, and any breastmilk he gets is a “bonus.” Everything she said I already knew, but it doesn’t make it hurt any less to hear that I’m failing at breastfeeding this time around.
I discussed all the ways to increase my milk production with her – and everything that I’ve tried. Absolutely nothing has worked, so maybe it’s time for me to admit defeat and just give him bottles during the day. I’m still going to continue nursing him at night and first thing in the morning. That way, I’ve got hours and hours in between to build up my supply of milk. It just tears me apart that I can’t just nurse him any time I want to and actually do him any good.
Have you had experiences with low milk supply? Did it effect you emotionally? Any advice or tips you can give me?
It’s funny. I’ve nursed 5 of my 6 kids, but this flabbergasts me… I just don’t get why I’m not producing anything this time around.