Wednesday, March 12, 2008

One poopey morning...and On Breastfeeding

One Poopey Morning…
Sometimes I think I know my daughter. Then, she usually throws me for a loop. I am starting to recognize when she is tired, hungry, uncomfortable, wanting to move, or when she wants attention or something to play with/look at. She starts to flail her arms up and down and grunt when she’s just beginning to let me know something is up. Then it progresses (of course I usually try to help her at the first signs). Sometimes I can even tell when she needs to poop, believe it or not. She gets really fussy, and I’ll know that she hadn’t gone in a while, then she will nurse off and on and eventually she will let it all out. Well, this morning she was up eating off an on from about 5am to 8am. Not the norm, as this girl has really recognized night to morning since birth. I get up to change her diaper, and realize she’d recently pooped. So I take her diaper off, wipe her bottom, and go to throw it away. It’s then I hear this weird sound! I thought, “what on earth was that?” I look and see that (you guessed it) she has pooped all over the place. If you know anything about breastfed baby poop (at least our baby’s) it stains everything it touches (hence why we had two waterproof changing pads under her). Except the explosion went beyond them and got onto her new and beautiful crib sheet! Ahhrrrr…..the wet wipes! It was all over her clothes, her, and was getting all over me. Brielle was oblivious to all of this. She carried on as nothing had happened. I rushed everything to the laundry room to soak & wash. She happily played with the tail of my stuffed dolphin since I had gotten her dressed and taken care of her first. I actually like it when things go differently than expected sometimes. She keeps me alert and attentive to her. I appreciate that about her, her personality.
On Breastfeeding…
We are now 3 ½ months into her life and into breastfeeding. It seems that we had to wait a little longer to enter our “reward” era. The books all suggested that around 6-8 weeks it would all click and become clear that it had been worth it to stick it out. I was sure looking forward to that time, because the first 8 weeks were rough! Breastfeeding wasn’t natural, she didn’t easily latch on, and it was so time consuming and painful! I knew that it would eventually be worth it…I just never knew when. Well, it took 3 months for her to really learn to calm from her colic. We spent countless hours holding her, bouncing her, rocking her, and trying to listen to her needs. She has spent more time in the sling, next to her mother, than any baby I’ve ever known. Now that “sometimes” I think I know her, I can generally try things I think she may need to help her. I had to recognize that she didn’t want to nurse in loud places, and I had to accommodate that for her. I had to realize while some advice was beneficial for us, other advice was best left alone. I had to trust that she and I have a unique relationship from all other babies and moms, and I had to learn to trust my instincts as her mother. Many times I reminded myself that if she were born to me two hundred years ago and we were living as native Americans on this continent, we would have to figure out how to do this! And I enjoy breastfeeding her now. It is a very special time for us. I thought that it had actually been part of my problem with being so rundown and filled with crazy thoughts after having her (since having a baby was so much more taxing than I‘d remembered and I‘d never exclusively breastfed my other children), but I realize now how much it actually helped me. I had to be giving, attentive, nurturing, and sacrificial. I had to be patient and determined. I had to put someone else’s best interest before mine. It almost seemed that when I realized all of this, that nursing just naturally clicked for both of us. And now we are both reaping the many benefits of it. And like I read in The Fussy Baby Book, “This is a need that my daughter has right now at this certain time in her life, that only I can meet.” And I am aware that it will not last forever…so now is the time, today is the day…to feel blessed.

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