Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding

As committed as we are, breastfeeding is so much harder than I expected. My milk didn’t come in until day seven, and it was the transitional milk (colostrum mixed with some milk), the color of the milk has changed over the past three weeks, it’s still not completely white but I am making progress everyday, this morning I pumped 5 oz at 5:30, the most ever! However, with the growing appetite the boys have, it just seems impossible to catch up. They are consuming between 16 and 24oz a day for donor’s milk, and we are learning and trying different strategies to see what works the best.

We called Dr. Young, our paediatrician today to get her advice on how to increase the milk supply, her opinion was pumping isn’t as efficient as letting the boys suckle for the purpose of building up milk supply. So we will put them at the breast more. Lin was actually satisfied this afternoon after staying on for about an hour – yes an hour, that’s why it’s so tough, because there’s no break in between the feedings. They are definitely more content and soothed breastfed rather than getting the milk from the bottles. They also have their rhythm of suckling, swallowing, and breathing, I noticed they make some interesting sound as well during the feeding, sometimes they even hold their hands, most of the time, they present mirror images with their fists right next to their faces – so adorable!

So I am eating a lot of oatmeal, drinking plenty of water, and we will try out the brewer’s yeast, and six packs of Mother’s Milk tea with Dr. Gil’s lactation formula. Some day, maybe I will have plenty of milk and I will have to freeze it 🙂

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9 Comments

Filed under 1st Month

9 responses to “Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding

  1. Sara Brown

    Cynthia your twins are gorgeous! Congratulations on getting them out of the tummy and into loving arms. The next struggle is nursing, and I remember well crying as I tried to get the hang of it with my two boys. I also took a while to get the milk up, and had to struggle to figure out how to feed them simultaneously. At first I was feeding them every 2 hours, and sometimes it took me most of 2 hours, so it was hard. But if a Mommy can rip the door off a car to save baby, she can by-God tandem nurse! And soon you will have it figured out and it will become easy and comfortable if you just don’t give up. Then you will find you’ve got a fountain of milk. You’ve gotta pack in the calories and fluids. I ate ice cream constantly and gallons of milk and I didn’t gain a pound. Do you nurse them one at a time, or have you mastered the delicate art of two at once?
    I am so happy for you! Now I miss those early days that seemed so rough back then. If there’s anything I can help with about nursing I’m happy to share my experience. It’s been one of the greatest joys of my life, and it really will become easy before long. My twins are 15 mos old today, and they still nurse once a day at bedtime, ’cause I just don’t want to give it up, even though they probably no longer really need it.

  2. Lynn

    Hang in there Cynthia! It’s hard work, and seems never-ending, but it’s worth it. I’m with you, it’s hard work to get them to be good efficient nursers! I am hoping your babies and ours catch on more and more every day.

  3. Kim

    I am with your pediatrician. Those boys are much more efficient at getting milk out than a pump. The more they nurse, the more you’ll make. It is supply and demand. Also, it is hard to judge how much milk you are producing by the pump. Some mothers are never able to get anything out with a pump but they have more than enough to satisfy their babies. If you are pumping 5 ounces then you are probably producing much more than that!

    It is VERY VERY tiring and hard at first, but it DOES get better. Not long from now and it will seem so easy! Keep working. You are a superstar!

  4. Kim

    Also, I just happened to think….an hour is a really long time to nurse. Are they actively nursing that whole time? They could be simply using it for comfort (ie..they are full, but just want to stay close). So, that could be a reason that they seem like they are not full when you stop nursing. They might be full, but just still want the closeness and comfort nursing brings.

  5. Sara Brown

    I agree that the pump is not a good indicator of what you’re really able to produce. My breasts didn’t like the “electric baby” as I call it, and I needed the psychological effect of the babies in my arms in order to really let it flow. I did pump, but mostly when I got mastitis and when I went back to work. My babies were chubby from nursing even though I couldn’t pump much.
    Also I hope this has no bearing on your situation, but the reason my milk took sooo long to come in was that my moron doctor left a chunk of placenta in my uterus. I got milk eventually anyway, and I did not know at first. All I knew was that I kept bleeding for a LONG time after my c-section. I called and asked about it, and was told not to worry. Eventually it scared the daylights out of me by coming out on its own. In hindsight this was maybe good, cause to get it out by force you get a D&C which I understand is not fun. So I hope this has nothing to do with your slow to arrive milk, but I thought I should mention it just in case. They can do an ultrasound to check it.

    • Sara, you are not the first twin mom who told me there’s a piece of placenta left in the uterus!!! My midwife told me about this possibility during her first post-partum visit, I am hoping that’s not the case, it will be too upsetting.

      I do feel the chills, one of the symptom for postpartum haemorrhage, and I still have small amount of bleeding, it’s almost a month now – no heavy bleeding though, I am not sure however, how long the normal bleeding should last???

      • Sara Brown

        Sometimes I bled a little, sometimes more, and I am trying to remember exactly how long it was before it finally came out spontaneously. I think it was at least 2 months, maybe 3. “What to Expect” said to call the doctor if it didn’t stop after 2-3 weeks. But my idiot OB was very dismissive about it, and I kept thinking it was about to stop. Some days it did, but then it would start back up. I was just not very focused on myself at the time 😉 You could request an ultrasound if you want to know for sure.

  6. Sara Brown

    But I should also mention, that even with this cluttered uterus situation, plus my babies having initial trouble latching on, I STILL began spouting milk like a fountain by the end of month 2, and the babies got BIG. So while it is a pain if it is happening to you, it won’t hurt the babies access to nutrition long term.

    • I am going to have an ultrasound just to rule out that possibility. At least I am at ease not writing down every ml I pumped out of the Ameda! Looks like the babies are getting enough milk especially in the morning, we burped them and they spit up…

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