Posted in Motherhood

Tested

It’s day 22 and I think I’m about to have a mental breakdown.

Last week, I found out there is a small tear on my cesarean scar. Before that one corner of the incision hurt really bad that I doubled over each time I tried to get out of bed. It felt like someone was punching my sides whenever I moved in a wrong angle.

Then after a few days, I felt something wet at my scar and when I touched it, I yowled in pain for it felt as though my skin was tearing. When I looked at my fingers, there were some blood and pus. Of course I went straight to the doctor when I found out it was bleeding because I knew it was a sign of cesarean scar infection and I didn’t want it to get worse.

Then the fever started and I wasn’t able to get out of bed much. The doctor asked me to lie down as long as I can to avoid further tearing of the scar. She gave me antibiotics to stop the infection. Slowly the pain faded and there was lesser and lesser bleeding or pus coming out of the scar.

But because of that, my milk supply took a dive.

I have no idea why. It was safe for me to breastfeed Damien even though I was on antibiotics and I did breastfeed him during the time I had the fever. It was just somehow my body was making less milk. Due to that, Damien was constantly crying and fussing at my breasts because of the slow flow of my breastmilk.

Finally my mother said he needs to be supplemented with formula.

Everyone knew how hard I tried to not let Damien have any formula and I fought tooth and nail the first few weeks to get through all the engorged breasts and cracked nipples just so I could exclusively breastfeed Damien.

Mohen looked at me when my mother said that he knew I wanted to say no. But I also knew that there is no way I could make Damien full with the condition I was in.

So, finally I gave in.

And now, even after a week and I’ve recovered from the fever although not the muscle pain of the incision (infection’s gone away though, thank God), my supply is still low.

I’ve drank like a whole tank of water, I tried herbal remedies to increase milk supply, I drink fenugreek tea because it is believed to help boost milk supply, I try to relax and rest as much as I can but my milk is still so slow it comes out in trickles. Every time Damien nurses now, he tugs at my nipple and fusses because he can’t get the milk out fast enough to make him full.

I cry each time I had to supplement him with formula. It was like every gulp he drinks from the formula is killing me and I feel terribly guilty. Even with pumping, I can only squeeze out a few ounces.

The only comfort I have now is that Damien has the chance to breastfeed when he wakes up for his midnight feed. Since he sleeps for a few long hours at night, my milk has a chance to store up a little and it’s flowing quite fast for him to nurse and fall asleep on breastmilk alone. I know that some breastmilk is better than none (related article: Partial Breastfeeding) but it kills me to know that I can’t breastfeed him exclusively anymore.

I remembered how my milk supply was high during Eros and Sophia’s time but I wasn’t completely resolved to fully breastfeed them. I had no health issues that caused my milk supply to dwindle but I didn’t fully take advantage of the situation. And now, when I’m determined, things turned out differently.

I will try to stay positive so that my milk won’t go away completely. I know that I will give Damien as much chance to breastfeed as possible and will not resort to formula all the time to supplement him.

It’s frustrating that I’ve tried, I’ve bled, I’ve cried so much that first few weeks only to let up now.

But I will try to keep at it for as long as I am able.

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Author:

A feminist mother of 3 who thinks she can write.

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