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The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Practical wisdom for Vegan parents-to-be and new vegan parents.

Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Miso Vegan » Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:15 am

Sorry it's been such a struggle. Thyroid could definitely be an issue - giving birth and nursing made my thyroid go crazy for awhile. Will you get your thyroid checked?
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Ariann » Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:18 am

I was on synthroid just during the pregnancy because my numbers were normal but being high-normal puts you at risk for birth defects and miscarriage. They told me to stop taking the synthroid after the birth and I'm supposed to get checked at 6 weeks, but I think I'm going to try to get checked sooner.
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Ariann » Tue Oct 04, 2011 1:40 am

Picture!
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Dugan » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:52 am

Aaawwww!!!!! :kiss:
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I haven't disappeared!

Postby Ariann » Sun Nov 20, 2011 7:08 pm

So I went back to work five weeks ago and have been totally overwhelmed ever since but also feel a lot better than I did before. I definitely was struggling with some postpartum depression that was exacerbated by the feeding issues and the constant ruminating on the difficulties of the birth (I'm still a little mired in that). I had everything under the sun tested including all of my relevant hormone levels and also tried a couple drugs (and all the herbs in the world) and in the end nothing helped my milk supply, nothing is wrong according to the tests, and I'm still at a loss to explain my dismal milk production. At this point I am still nursing, but only six or so times a day (including one or two pumpings when I'm at work) and producing an ounce or less per nursing/pumping session. So something like 80-90% of her diet is soy formula and that percentage will only go up as time passes. She's growing and developing, so I'm trying to find peace with the situation. I'm also looking for a doctor who specializes in breastfeeding issues so maybe we can look at something to do before my next child is born. She still really enjoys nursing and takes pretty easily to the breast so I'm relieved that she hasn't rejected me even though I am not meeting her nutritive needs (and nursing finally doesn't hurt anymore). We're still co-sleeping and carrying her constantly (in our arms or in the Moby wrap), so I feel like what she is missing out on in the food department maybe she's making up for a bit by bonding in other ways. She's also wonderfully sleeping now 5-6 hours straight at night, smiling and babbling a lot during the day, and generally just being adorable.

Being back at work is both really difficult and a huge relief. My job is difficult on its own and I'm spending a ton of time just playing catch-up and putting out immediate fires instead of doing the visioning and thinking that I was really hired to do. Hopefully I'll get into a rhythm soon and will be better able to manage my time. When I leave in the morning and Malka is asleep next to my husband in bed my heart really breaks, but at the end of the day I am so much better equipped to love her and care for her than I'd be if I spent all day with her. And being apart from her helps me focus and stay on task at work because I really want to get home. Occasionally my husband brings her to visit in the middle of the day, which also helps. We've been touring day care facilities and they are all either super depressing or expensive and have a long wait list, so I am hoping that my husband takes a good long time before getting a job, despite the financial drawbacks to his being at home.
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Miso Vegan » Tue Nov 22, 2011 4:22 am

I want to say something thoughtful, perhaps helpful, but mostly supportive, and all I can think of is "damn, that sounds hard, emotionally and physically." It always is, but adding PPD and breastfeeding troubles and then going back to work (even with the relief that brings) and looking for daycare just makes it all the harder. I'm sorry your babymoon wasn't easier/more relaxing/pleasant, but I'm glad you're coming out of the depression at least. Hugs to you.
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Ariann » Thu Jan 26, 2012 3:30 am

I have completely stopped breastfeeding and am really depressed about it. I had stopped pumping awhile ago at work, because it was just pointless with such low output. I was offering her the boob whenever I was with her and she was hungry and she increasingly rejected it, especially during the day. I tried offering after she took the bottle, but her desire to suck is now only connected to eating, she's not interested in nursing just for comfort anymore. We eventually cut down to just offering her the boob when she woke up in the middle of the night and she would suck for a few minutes while my husband made a bottle, but now she's rejecting even that. The feeling of being a failure that I felt in the beginning when we figured out breastfeeding wasn't going to work is coming back full force. Sometimes I feel like I'm not even a mother - there's nothing I can give her anymore that my husband can't and that he doesn't do better anyway since he's with her all the time. I am really demoralized.
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Miso Vegan » Sat Jan 28, 2012 6:43 am

{{{{{{{{Ariann}}}}}}}}
I know you know, intellectually, that neither your motherhood nor your womanhood is defined by breastfeeding, or being ever-present for your daughter. I also know that our emotions, unfortunately at times, do not always listen to our intellect.
What would you tell a mother who came to you as a rabbi, seeking your comfort and guidance because she couldn't breastfeed, and had to work outside the home?
Malka is truly, truly lucky to have both you and your husband.
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby gladcow » Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:40 am

what she said!

we are valuable as the parents we are because of what we bring to the table. It becomes more clear as time goes on what your role is as opposed to what your husband's role is and how they work together and how they work individually. You are valuable to Malka because you are. The end.

*hugs*
everyone's right and no one is sorry, that's the start and the end of the story
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Re: The care and feeding of tiny little parasites

Postby Ariann » Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:47 am

I love you guys.
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