Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Breast no more (I think)

Boo hoo.

Anya is definitely giving up breast feeding.  I had a bad bug last week and was very dehydrated but I continued to feed as much as I could.  Luckily Anya didn't get it but Mia did.

However, at the end of the week I noticed that Anya would bite me while feeding. Now I'm not talking a little gummy bite, or even a playful bite, it was a massive full-on bite. And it bloody hurt.

I also noticed that my let down was taking longer to happen and she would get very frustrated.  We had a lot of screaming on her part.  She wanted the milk but it wasn't happening quick enough and when it did happen she would often bite.  So she spent a lot of time playing and doing her best not to feed.  A couple of times I just let it go, but when she started to miss her bedtime feeds, that's when I started to get concerned.

Mia had a nursing strike at 9 months and it was awful.  The worst thing was that I really didn't want to give her formula but at 9 months either I expressed or I gave her formula, she couldn't have cows milk.  In the end I expressed for two months until I had made the decision to go easy on myself and give her formula.  But I still wasn't really happy with it.  After being used to breastmilk for so long Mia hated formula (and it stunk) so luckily she wasn't on it too long before we put her on cows milk.

Luckily Anya is already used to cows milk on her cereal so if I need to she can have that.

She has still been waking up for a night feed and she had a night feed last night.  I remember thinking to cherish every moment as that might have been our last feed together.

I've done everything I can to get her back onto breast feeding, expressed frequently to increase milk supply, tried distraction attempts so she wouldn't bite, put up with the biting (sometimes nearly crying with pain), tried nipple shields (she just wants to play with them and bite them and tried different positions.  She's been to the doctors just to make sure she didn't have an ear infection.  The doctor said she did have a slight ear infection but nothing that wouldn't clear up on it's on and to use calpol 3 times a day.  She's also having something to soothe her throat as I suspected she had a bit of a sore throat.

I really don't think there is anything else I can do apart from accepting my breast feeding days are coming to an end.

I should focus on the joys that I've had as a breastfeeding mother and how lucky I am that things always go smoothly (apart from now).

But I still wish she was feeding, a lovely snuggle at the end of the day for the bedtime feed is wonderful, in fact a snuggle at anytime of the day for a feed is wonderful.

When I started to feed Anya I used to say as long as she feeds past age 1 I'll be happy.  She's 1 on Monday so I suppose I'll let her off the hook.

She didn't feed tonight but we still had a little snuggle.

The only trouble with stopping breastfeeding is your hormones returning to a non-feeding mother.  I know I'll be craving a third baby!

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