This blog is mostly for me. To remember the ups and downs of day to day life as a low supply mama.
See, I have IGT, insufficient glandular tissue and hypoplastic breasts. That means I have underdeveloped breasts, and not enough milk making stuff in them. So, I can make some milk, just not enough.
Breastfeeding is supposed to be a supply and demand system. Only, I can demand, demand, demand, and the supply never goes up. This is heartbreaking for me, because I've always known I would breastfeed my children.
And now, here I am with baby number 3, and I've never had a full supply.
With my first child, he spent a week in the NICU, and I couldn't pump enough with my single, manual pump, but I tried. When he got home, I used an SNS and nursed all the time, but it wasn't enough. I just gave up because I was so disgusted with myself, and wound up with some really nasty PPD. With my second, she had tongue-tie and so couldn't latch well. We nursed and bottlefed well for a few months, until I got my period, and then my sad little supply suffered even more, and I couldn't build it up enough between periods. I still managed to get a little breast milk into her for a good 10 months. With my third, I took herbs during my pregnancy, had a natural childbirth, had her latched on 20 minutes after birth, consumed my placenta,* nursed her around the clock, and she was miserable all the time. My milk never "came in" and by day 5, my daughter was very dehydrated and I sent my husband out for formula. And I bawled my eyes out. But I only gave her a little bit, to try and keep her from getting too dehydrated, and then she was right back on the breast. But then, she didn't gain any weight for 2 weeks, and her pediatrician sent her to the children's hospital for observation and testing, even though I told her I knew what the problem was. She gained 3oz in the hospital, and she's been happier ever since.
We're still nursing, but following every nursing with a bottle. She's happy and healthy, but I'm still grieving the loss of that elusive, exclusive breastfeeding relationship.
*I had my placenta dehydrated, ground up, and put in capsules. And, no, it wasn't gross.