Aside from our first week of waiting for my milk to come in, Dumplin’ and my nursing relationship has been really good. He’s a champion latcher, and I have no pain from regular nursing (only at the beginning when he would cluster feed over night). My supply went crazy at about two months in because I was pumping to create a stash, only to find out that I have really high lipase content, so my milk would taste soapy within 6 hours. The oversupply caused me to have plugged ducts and then mastitis. After that, I decided that the stress of always having to grab my pump (rather than just breastfeed on demand wherever, whenever) at the perfect time- when Dumplin’ was already going for a feed, was too much for me, so I ditched pumping all together. Eventually, my supply levelled out, and now I seem to rarely get engorged, and have the perfect amount of milk for what he needs.
There’s always a however, isn’t there?
Lately he’s been really distracted at the boob, and not eating as much. He’s also going long periods between nursing- like 4 hours now, compared to 2-3 hours.
Worst of all, he’s been having shitfits on my boob. Like this morning, he hadn’t eaten since about 4am, and was due for a nursing. I had tried multiple times to feed him, but the exact same thing kept happening:
He would latch on, suck suck suck, and then pull off in frustration. Then try again, and same thing, over and over again, never staying on long enough to actually eat. I tried different positions- side lying, cross cradle, football… Each time, the same reaction.
So it’s now 10am here, and he hasn’t eaten since 4am. He’s screaming at the top of his lungs, and I’ve just put him in his swing to chill out and hopefully take a nap. But- I feel really uneasy about the fact that he hasn’t eaten since 4am.
Now, there are other concerns that I have too:
1. Is my supply dwindling? My mom said her breasts “dried up” at 3 months. I’ve also heard that from several other women. Is that a “thing” that commonly happens, and why?
2. I’m working out about 5 days a week right now, just lifting weights- no cardio at all. I keep my workouts under an hour, and am conscious not to burn too many calories, but is this affecting my supply? I’m also consciously refeeding- so I’m consuming between 2500-3000 calories a day, and drinking lots of water.
3. Wonder Weeks says he’s in a stormy time right now. Leap 4 is long too…. Is this why he’s so fussy and has gone on a hunger strike?
4. The little man refuses to take a bottle now. I still need to try different nipples, but he just flat out refuses. I’ve tried the Philips, the Playtex, Medela Calma. No dice. And this is with freshly expressed breastmilk.
5. When I pump, I get less than 1 ounce now. It’s feeling pretty futile every time I try to pump. I don’t want to be pumping again, but it just seems unfair to leave Dumplin’ with DW and nothing to feed him if I’m gone for more than an hour and a half.
6. Boobs don’t seem to soothe him as much anymore. It used to be that if he was having a crying fit, nursing was the instant way to calm him down. Nottasomuch anymore… Damnit.