Breastfeeding Round 2: The Milk Bar Is Open0
Right after Josie was born, breastfeeding came quite easily for us and was a totally opposite experience than with my first baby. Of course, it helped that this baby was born at term, without a long labour, without any narcotics in her system and she was able to go skin to skin with me right after birth. All really important factors that relate to the success of establishing breastfeeding. I also knew how to hand express colostrum and would manually express drops of the good stuff so that her reward was instant when she came close to me. Encouraging a suckle right from the start.
This nursing experience with Josie was in sync right from the very first latch. My 9 pound newborn lost only a minuscule amount of weight by day 1 and started gaining weight by day 2. The nurse always looked a bit shocked when she would weight Josie and the weight was increasing instead of the expected decrease that is often seen. I experienced minor engorgement that regulated itself by day 5, unlike the severe engorgement experienced with Ben (which really was from all the extra pumping that was going on and the unsatisfactory latching).
This time I did not have any reason to pump, cup feed, spoon feed or need to do implement any big feeding plan. The babe latched on, nursed and that was it. What a difference a 38 week old baby is compared to a 36 week old baby (Ben!) at birth. Huge difference in their ability to coordinate latching and suckling and also in their stamina to keep on trying. In our first 24 hours together I nursed Josie 10 or so times. In between I did a lot of skin to skin to stimulate my milk production and I offered up the milk bar on her cue. Even a questionable cue got an attempt at latching.
When I look at the photo above I see my very tired but satisfied self, and I’m amazed at the fact that I am still wearing the earrings that I put on the day before along with my Clinique eyeshadow. 7 weeks later we share a positively sweet rhythm when it comes to nursing and I can actually say that I enjoy each feed, even those at 3 AM.