March for Babies

Thursday, August 31, 2006


Absent Without Official Leave


AF is missing. Have you seen her? Not that I am all, "I want to cramp and bleed, please may I cramp and bleed?" No, not so much. On the other hand, I have been getting twinge/pains in the ovarian region(s) for about a week now and still no AF in sight. Actually, if I were one of those people who paid attention to mucus and such, I might think I was ovulating, which on CD 64 only makes sense if I completely skipped a cycle rather than find myself lost in the midst of one of those freakishly long ones. It is a bit disconcerting when you are expecting something at a certain time give or take a week and then here you find yourself month later and still nothing.  I have been stood up!


Points of Interest:

I am no longer on progesterone which I took to regulate my cycles.

I am no longer on Metformin for help in ovulation (which might also regulate the cycles).

My face has broken out.

I gained the requisite weight and bloat.

Nothing in the undies to show for it.


I would say I am getting all the crap without any of the benefits but really, what are the benefits? I suppose one might say that a benefit would be just getting it over with instead of this drawn out state of PMS I seem to be locked into. I highly doubt it is the fact that I am still pumping since I only pump 2-3 times per day. Not enough to throw off my cycles, especially since I have already had a couple normal-ish ones since Azure was born.


One family member just had major surgery to remove a 5"x 5" cyst, the ovary and tube on that side. The other ovary was cystic but the Dr. thought she could treat it. Another family member (15 years old) is going in for her first gyno exam because her period won’t stop. We believe there might be something wrong with the Elephant Uteri. Ya think?


I fear for Azure’s future. I don’t want her to have to deal with this crap.

Monday, August 28, 2006

I Chickened Out

I am still pumping.  I will do it when I can and give her what I can.  If that means pumping every twelve hours and getting minimal amounts, then that is what I will do for now. I will not be ordering any more Domperidone, when I run out then I run out.   My supply seems to be coming and going.  It came enough over the weekend to provide a plugged duct even though I was pumping more than during the week.  We seem to have gotten past that and now I am back to a small amount per session again. *throws up hands* Who knows.
I do feel better about it emotionally now.  I think I am in a better place to see what happens and roll with the punches.  She is getting some fresh milk, some formula (Neosure Advanced with Iron, specifically for preemies) and mostly thawed milk from the freezer stash.  I think I will just gradually shift the ratio from mostly frozen to mostly formula and keep giving her whatever fresh I can and eventually we will just end up on the formula.  (Sounds easy enough, doesn't it? Yeah, and communism works on paper.)
In other news: The dog is showing signs of sibling rivalry.  Not aggression or anything, just acting out to get our attention.  She has started jumping up on the bed.  She is not allowed on the bed.  This has been the rule from day one. (She gets plenty of snuggling in on the couch, the bed is our space.)  Then she refused to go for a walk with T yesterday.  She got three houses down and decided that was far enough.  She sat down and wouldn't budge.  He brought her back home and thought maybe running would do the trick so he took off down the block at a light jog, she followed for three houses and once again put on the brakes and wouldn't go any further.  I think she wanted at least me if not both Azure and me to go along on the walk.  Poor thing.  This morning I awoke to find the dog staring at me.  Once she knew my eyes were open she started doing her "going out" dance.  Normally I would send her back to her bed but I didn't want Azure to wake up and then have to feed her before taking the dog out and make the dog wait...again...for my attention.  I think I might have my cousin come over next weekend to watch Azure so I can spend some extra lovin' time with the dog. 
Azure has now officially made it up to my birth weight and length.  I was 9lb. 7oz. 22"Long and she is 9lb. 8oz. 21"Long.  I cannot imagine how my mother gave birth the something that size!  1lb. 15oz. hurt bad enough!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

To Continue the Struggle of Pumping or Throw in the Dried Up Wrinkled Prune of a Towel

Pros to weaning

  1. No more sore boobs (Did you hear the collective sigh of relief coming from my battered cleavage?)
  2. More time with Azure
  3. Fewer demands on me/my time
  4. Easier to prepare bottles & easier to travel
  5. I can stop spending money on Domperidone which is no longer helping (or maybe that is what is allowing me to get the little bit I still can?)
  6. I can have a real lunch hour again. Time to myself, time to run errands or time to visit Azure.
  7. Fewer restrictions on my diet!!!! (Think of Homer’s voice saying, "Mmmm, peaeaeannnnnnnnuuuuts" and drooling.)
  8. I can get the breastpump off its place on the back of the livingroom couch (for all the world to see)
  9. I can sleep comfortably on my stomach again
  10. It will allow me to be a better mother

Cons of weaning

  1. No more antibodies for Azure, her health/immunity is a huge concern in this decision
  2. Formula Poop, blehck!
  3. I wanted to get to one year and will only make it to around 9-months-actual using the remainder of the freezer stash before it goes bad
  4. Formula is more bubbly in the bottle, I worry about her getting gassy
  5. I worry about drive-by parenting when seen with a bottle (Of course this happens with breastmilk too but at least now I can say "Hey, lay off, it is breastmilk!")
  6. I spoke to the neonatologist who attended at Azure’s delivery the other day and she said she has been researching breastmilk and formula and has found that the donated breastmilk gives no more benefits over formula. The way it is frozen and processed, etc. destroys whatever special qualities the fresh milk has over the formula so you might as well use formula. She also said that no matter what they do to synthesize the breastmilk they just can’t get it quite to the point where it is equal. This blows. I wonder if my freezer stash is any better than formula at this point. (NOTE: The freezer stash will last us well into November.)
  7. I dread pumping now since I used to get 4-6 ounces per session and I am now struggling to get 1 ounce per session
  8. I  worry about Azure’s digestion. She seems to really struggle to get the poop going. She is having a dirty diaper or two every few days but she gets gassy and uncomfortable while trying to get those out and I don’t want to make that worse.  We are still giving her juice each day.
  9. We have been told by more than one health professional that Azure would probably not be doing as well as she is if she had not had the breastmilk this whole time.
  10. It will make me feel like a bad mother

I am glad I made it this far (6months / 2-1/2months adjusted). Many women would not have in my shoes, but I want Azure to have more time with the breastmilk (because she is a preemie and because she has had digestive issues). It used to come so easily for me and now it is a struggle and I don’t know why that changed and I wish I could go back to the way it was when she was in the hospital and I was just swimming in it. I thought that going back to work would help and it did at first. I actually added more pumping sessions to my day since I had a quiet place to do it with no distractions. However, I think the stress of transporting Azure and milk and our colletive stuff and getting to where we need to be on time plus trying to get her to sleep through the night (we are close, it is hit or miss at this point) is taking its toll on me.


There I was typing this out in a calm and rational manner when the thought struck me, "I am failing her", and I had to stop to CRY and pull myself together.


What do I do when what is best for me conflicts with what is best for her? Is her nutrition more important than quality time with her mother? Why does she smile more easily for others than for me? Is she reacting to my own stress?


I always figured that when I got to the point where I would move on from pumping to formula it would be by choice and that I might feel conflicted about it logically. What I did not expect was that I would feel so strongly emotionally. I think my feelings about this decision are all wrapped up with my missing her so much due to my return to work and the helplessness I feel at the fact that T is not as actively involved with the parenting as I had hoped he would be*. I am tired. I am depressed about my situation and I don’t have any time to myself to process these feelings. (Could hormonal changes be effecting my supply and also/therefore my mood?) (Does it matter that I am now on CD 57? I did test last week and it was negative. I was relieved. For the first time in 5 years I was happy to see a negative.)


Therefore, it must be time to blog about it.


I know that if I were reading this post on someone else’s site I would offer support and let them know that they did the best that they could, and their child is so much better off for it and they can now go on to building a better relationship without all of the pumping getting in the way. I know what I would say to someone in my place. I think though, that since it is me, I do not necessarily believe what I am saying. (Lala, feel free to slap me at any time!)


*I do not mean to make out like T is a bad father.  He is helping by doing everything else, cooking, cleaning, shopping,  everything that has nothing to do with Azure.  He leaves her to my care, 100% my responsibility.  It just gets draining sometimes never to get a break from her.  Sometimes it would be nice to let him feed her and I could do the dishes, ya know? He does hold her and play with her but I provide all of her care.


PS. I told you I write when I have issues!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

The Moment

My entire life has been spent dwelling on the past and dreaming (sometimes in nightmares) about the future.  I spent years in therapy which didn't help and then a few short months in therapy that did help.  I spent my teen years waiting to graduate and go to college.  I spent my college years waiting to graduate and move in with T.  I spent my time living with T waiting to get married.  Then I spent four years waiting to TTC and you know the rest from there. 
I have spent my life trying to get over losing my brother at a young age and my parent's divorce.  I was never happy with what I had. I always mourned what I had lost and wanted something more. 
A couple years ago around Christmas I became really interested in Buddhism.  I studied it in college along with the other religions that were part of my Comparative Religions major. (It was supposed to be my minor but I realized I only needed like two more classes for a second major so why the Hell not, right?)  I was searching for something to fill a void in me.  I needed something to hold me up in the face of Infertility. (Being an atheist this was sort of difficult.)  I decided that Buddhism wouldn't work since the whole point is to let go of your desires and what Infertile can drag herself off to the RE for a post-coital and say she has honestly shed her desires?  Yeah, it didn't really fit. 
Anyway, my point is this.  Even though it is hard and I am tired and I am stressed and I get overwhelmed now and again, I think I finally have what I have been waiting for.  I have a beautiful home (small starter house with a wife-beating-drug-addict living across the street, but I love it anyway), I have a husband who is my best friend, I have a beautiful daughter who is beating all the odds this world is setting against her and a dog who loves to snuggle on the couch.  (Ok, to be honest I still have Endometriosis and wonky works (CD 42 and counting) but I think that would happen regardless.)
My point is, I am happy.  Busy and tired and happy.  Which I think is why I have not been writing.  I have mentioned before that I write when I am depressed.  I haven't been depressed since Azure came home.  I have been exhausted and I have had times when I needed a break, but I have not been depressed.
I think I will take a break for a while from the writing.  I don't need it the way I did when I started blogging.  It was always more for me than for the readers anyway.  I also know that those readers changed when I got pregnant and changed again DRASTICALLY when Azure came so early.  I have needed those readers.  You Dear Wonderful People In The Computer!  I needed the support so very much.  But this is where I say, "It's not you, it's me" and "I still want to be friends!" 
There is enough guilt wrapped up in motherhood for simple things like not clipping those fingernails before she sliced her nose open in the middle of the night, or not realizing until too late that she had pooped her pants and it had leaked out the side all over her blanket and the bouncy and by the time you realize it the mess had started to dry and solidify and she was almost stuck to the damn chair. (See?)  I do not need to feel guilty in my life for not blogging (both reading and writing) right now. (Please note this is self-inflicted guilt not put on me by anyone else.) Things may change, possibly relatively soon (a month? six months?), but for now, what I need is a little the real world.
We are doing great.  If we weren't I wouldn't be writing this right now. Thank you all for your unbelievable support and encouragement.
For the time being, I am living in the moment.

Monday, August 07, 2006

de ja vue

Back at work. Posting from cell phone while pumping.
Miss her!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006