So Monkey #2 decided she forgot how to breastfeed yesterday. For realz…She fed as normal at 1AM, 4AM and then at 7 she would go to the boob and not latch on. I spent a frustrating 15 minutes switching from side to side, not at all understanding why she wouldn’t or rather couldn’t feed. She was visibly thirtsy – rooting for the source of milk and licking her lips the obvious signs all babies make. But on contact she was howling and pulling away. I went through all the scenarios – maybe the Thai takeaway I had last night had changed the taste of my milk, maybe she had a neck cramp that was making it difficult for her to latch, maybe she was a little refluxy or developing some sort of cold/throat problem. All those possibilities were negated as I pumped and fed her my milk via bottle. She took it with ease and without any problems each time super satisfied and sleeping more peacefully than she had in days after each feed.
Fast forward to her 11PM feed and I was still completely at a lost as to why she was only taking the bottle. My boobs, particularly my left one was rock hard and slightly lumpy (ouch!). It’s such a science knowing how much to pump and when to pump when up until then I was exclusively breastfeeding. I needed to pump to get milk for baby girl as well as to relieve the pressure, but a pump is not as efficient as an actual baby. Pump too much, too often or not enough and too little and you end up as I was last night. Hot shower, warm compresses and crossing my fingers and toes hoping that on the next feed all would return to normal, which it did. At 1AM, she fed as normal and has continued to since.
I still have absolutely no idea why she went on a boobie strike, but it reminds me that I will have to get better at pumping and understanding the ins and outs of pumping when I am away from her in the future. With Monkey #1 I committed myself to breastfeeding exclusively for at least 6 months and then ended up breastfeeding for a year. During that time, I wasn’t comfortable with exercising “to the limit” so I told myself at a year I would definitely stop and then get back into a more rigourous fitness routine. This time around I feel more confident in combining breastfeeding and exercise. I know I’ll get the pumping thing under control and I’m already starting to surround myself with people that will support me on my training back up to half marathon fitness – running groups, a fantastic babysitter and a supportive husband are just some of them. The great thing about being in a new city is that I can choose to surround myself with like minded people who value healthy living as much as I do.
My husband also has some lofty goals for his running and other health pursuits in the new year and is supportive about me keeping fit post partum. He knows that if I am feeling energized it’s a good thing for the whole family. I’m excited about what he wants to do and I have already identified Rock ‘n’ Roll Montreal as a half marathon we should do together. My parents are a few hours away in Montreal, so the plan is to get up their with the monkeys and have my parents babysit. Their is a bit of logistics involved, but we have til September to sort it out. In the meantime, we can also have a trial run in May for the Brooklyn Half Marathon in May that is conveniently at the same time Big Monkey’s parents visit from New Zealand – guess who’ll be on babysitting duty. Being race worthy for May is going to mean strict training – I’m already planning a revised Couch to 5K plan starting in January followed by a Hal Higdon half marathon plan (I’ve had previous success with his plans).
Now to get through the holidays without having a total blowout