Actually let me rephrase that- NURSING HELL! Really, I'm not sure why I have such a hard time. I cry to the good Lord all the time about why my body can't just function like a normal lactating mother... This week has been just awful. PLAIN AWFUL. I can't express how much pain I've been in and how hard it is to take care of a newborn and a 2 year old with a 104 degree fever, the chills, aches... all that good stuff.
For those of you who have been lucky enough to dodge mastitis, BE THANKFUL. I would seriously rather go through labor again than deal with this horrible infection one more time. Henry is almost 3 weeks old and I've been running low grade fevers for about two weeks now. Yeah, the low grade fevers aren't fun at all... neither are the chills and that achy flu feeling, but I was getting by. Rewind to Tuesday night- my fever jumped up to 104, my right boob became ROCK HARD and boiling hot to the touch. Just thinking about feeding Henry (or pumping for that matter) made me want to vomit. In fact, one time while I was feeding him in the bath, I started dry heaving from the pain. I got on an antibiotic last night (thank God for Laura!!! I called her up at 8:30 PM and she called a script in to Meijers right away). Today I've kept the fever around 100-101. I am still incredibly achy and dealing with a few blocked ducts in my right breast. And really- if one more person tells me to "hang in there" I might scream. Clearly, they have not had mastitis 500000 times during their few months of breastfeeding (with Maeve I got it so much that I had to alternate between amox. and keflex on a weekly basis because I was building up such an immunity to them from taking the stupid meds all the time). I had high hopes this time around- after all, Henry is SUCH a better nurser. But for some reason my body produces such a load of milk that even a chunka chunk like Henry can't keep up with it all. Therefore I am left with backed up boobs. I'm only supposed to pump BEFORE a feeding (and only for a minute on each side) so I don't drown Henry with the flow of milk that comes out. And get this- with ONLY pumping before a feeding I accumulate about 30 oz of milk a DAY! Yeah.... MILK MILK MILK.
On top of all this, I am being the laziest mother on the face of the planet. My poooooor Maeve. She reads, does puzzles and plays with the stupid dog all day long while I lay on the couch begging Henry to eat. Henry has also invaded our baths. Laura told me to NURSE NURSE NURSE as much as I can in the bath because the hot water will make the milk come out better. It works wonders- it really does- but Maeve isn't happy about the "intruder" during tub time. I've had my mom and "GiGi" (MY grandma) come over and take Maeve to the toy store and to other fun places. But it seriously kills me every time she leaves. I feel like we're drifting farther and farther apart because of my breastfeeding issues. Wednesday we all went out for lunch (yes with me running a high temp and feeling like death)... I ended up having to leave in the middle of it because I didn't think I'd be able to drive myself home if I waited much longer. So my mom kept Maeve- I cried- no wait, SOBBED, through stupid Jackson Crossings as I'm walking back to my car with Henry. I seriously feel like the WORST mother right now!
If you thought this "vent" was over, you're wrong- it continues... yesterday we stayed inside the house all day (pretty much due to the cold- HOLY COW ITS COLD OUTSIDE!)- I noticed Maeve was picking at her diaper a lot. Just pulling at it, itching, that sort of thing. I asked her if she needed a change and she just said "diapers!" I took that as a yes, so I changed her. Come to find out, she wouldn't let me put a diaper back on. As soon as I took her wet diaper off, she started holding herself (down there) and crying saying "ITCHY! ITCHY!" What the heck??? I had horrible bladder infection problems when I was a kid, so my first thought was "OMG she probably has her first bladder infection." So I took a warm wash cloth and put it on her- it helped for a little bit but after 15 minutes or so, she was back to wailing about her "pee pee." Hmmm... I was totally perplexed. THEN the real horrendous part started- Henry started to fuss (feeding time!) and as SOON as I put Maeve down on the couch, she knew I was going to pick Henry up. She clung to me like white on rice! I mean really- I could not get her off of me. AND I felt horrible trying to peel her off- especially if she was sick! My already very, very hot face and head got even hotter as my mind was reeling about how to handle this. Do I pry Maeve off of me and run go grab Henry and try and feed him? Do I comfort my sick kid? Well I thought I'd try to do both... HAHAHA. I had Maeve clinging to my WAIST- my WAIST!!! And I had Henry in my arms- as soon as I sat on the couch and tried to nurse him she did this bear hug sooooo tight I couldn't possibly get Henry on the boob! My last resort was to call my mom... my mom came right over (yeah for moms!- she lives a second away!). SHE took Maeve and dealt with her potty problem and I nursed Henry. Once Henry was all set, I went back to Maeve to try and figure out what was going on. I couldn't think of what the heck it could be- but I didn't want her running around nakie. So I put a pair of undies on her (I had bought them for Christmas but.. they were desperately needed yesterday). AHA! That did the trick- as soon as I put them on her she peed- and she peed a LOT. It turns out she just didn't want to pee in her diaper or the potty. Oh good Lord. What a time for this to flare up. I'm all for potty training but not while I'm sicker than death itself.
I think I will conclude my vent now. There will be no new pictures for awhile- Maeve decided to break my camera. :(
Oh- last thing- I need some advice/help! How do you breastfeeding moms NOT stink like sour milk all the time??? I am literally washing my bras once a day just to keep them from stinking to high heaven. But with all the washing, its totally ruining the bras!!! Also- do you guys wear bras to sleep in? I was told not to because it could be a reason my ducts are clogging so easily- but I'm 100% confident if I don't sleep in a bra, not only will I be washing my bras every day but a load of sheets as well.