Archive | 1:23 pm

Emma is a whole new baby.

6 Jun

Greetings from Minnesota! Emma and I are spending the week at my parents’ house in Rochester – without daddy (Travis)! It’s been going well but we miss him like crazy.

Almost 2 weeks have gone by since I posted Emma’s 7 Week update and things have changed a lot in that time – for the better!

Right before we left for Minnesota 2 weeks ago, I took Emma back to the lactation consultant. A friend had pointed out the clicking she does while eating – I knew she clicked a lot, but she had done it since birth, even when latched correctly, so I had dismissed it. But since I have been trying everything and anything to help Emma be more comfortable, I figured re-visiting the lactation consultant to ask about it couldn’t hurt.

I was able to make an appointment for the same day I called and Emma cooperated by clicking while I nursed her at the lactation consultant’s office. The lady said that Emma was latched correctly, her palate was fine, she wasn’t tongue-tied, and that the clicking sounded like her way of compensating for too fast of a milk flow. She suggested nursing her in a different hold than the football hold so that the milk wouldn’t go straight down her throat. The position she suggested had me recline quite a bit and lay Emma on her stomach diagonally across my torso (like the cross-cradle hold, only more reclined). She said I could also use the scissor hold to slow down the flow of milk, break the suction to relatch Emma if she just kept clicking and to keep burping her frequently.

It took several sessions for me to get used to nursing Emma a different way, and I was tempted to not change how I was nursing her as a result, but I reminded myself that if I was willing to give up all the foods I loved (including my beloved coffee) to help Emma, why wouldn’t I be willing to change how I nurse her? So I stuck with it.

And I am so glad I did because that was the answer! After just a few feedings, Emma stopped crying after eating. Instead, she was alert and happy. She also started burping a lot more regularly. She still cries before falling asleep almost every time (because she’ll go from happy and smiling to crying in about 30 seconds) but it’s a very manageable amount of crying, and she’s alert and happy for at least 30-45 minutes before needing a nap. Several of Travis’ relatives commented that Emma didn’t seem to cry any more than a normal baby, which made me happy.

We’ve stopped giving her the acid reflux medication (we kept forgetting and I noticed that Emma was still fine) and I’ve slowly been introducing dairy back into my diet – starting with the most necessary morning cup of joe! Emma’s improvements have stayed consistent – praise the Lord!

I do have to be very mindful of how I nurse Emma now, which means no more reading or blogging during that time (I’ve tried and always ended up regretting it). And it takes her 45-60 minutes to nurse now instead of 20-30 like before. But those sacrifices are worth it to have a happy baby! And I’m sure those things will get better in time.

I’m still pumping about 2-3 oz (1-1.5 per side) before feeding Emma following her longest stretch of sleep at night, so that she’s not completely inundated – and it works out well because then I have a bottle stash built up. I also burp her 3-4 times per feeding, so that the air she swallows doesn’t get trapped under a bunch of milk.

Nighttime sleep is still a little hit or miss – some nights, she sleeps well for 5-6 hours straight but other nights, she only goes 4 hours. And after that first nighttime feeding around 3 am, she usually grunts a lot and only sleeps for another 2 hours. We try to burp and fart her but it doesn’t always seem to help.

Regardless, Emma is doing a million times better now than before. I feel like we’ve really turned a corner. I am so thankful that it was a relatively easy fix – and that we’ve finally figured it out! Thanks to all those who prayed for us.

See you tomorrow for Emma’s 2-Month update!