I’ve figured out a trick with my breastpump.   I never respond to pumps well, despite having an oversupply issue.  When I was exclusively pumping one breast, I would get maybe 7oz out in 24 hours.  It was pathetic.  From a supremely engorged breast I can get about 3oz out, and I considered that amazing progress.

I know from reading about it, and personal experience, that your milk flows ten times better if you let your breast go unsupported when nursing.  Sitting with good posture, and letting baby pull down just slightly on your (unsupported) breast can help with a slow flow, or slow let down.  So, I figured I’d try it with the pump.  I went topless, sat up straight,  pulled down just slightly with the pump, and only just rested it against my skin, rather then pushing slightly..  I got 5oz on my first try, and less than twelve hours later I got seven.  From one breast.  I was insanely happy about it.  I wanted to run about with the bottle and show people (But I didn’t, because I’m sure no one would appreciate it’s value but me).  My mother gave me some positive words, though, so did Curtis.  Both know how much I’ve been depressed over never pumping anything.  My mind always thinks to emergencies, and how we’d have to go to formula if something happened that prevented me from breastfeeding directly.  I’m so thrilled, now that I have a good technique I’m not worrying so much about conserving every drop for the yogurt thing.

Tonight sucked.

Curtis decided not to cook dinner, and we got pizza instead (that wasn’t the sucky part).  He even let me order without onions this time.  Tempest didn’t sleep, so I figured I’d be eating with another struggle.  I decided to make yogurt with regular milk so I could afford some practice tries.  This time I put in an entire caplet, as my mother suggested trying.  It worked!  Thanks to the digital thermometer, I had a big safety net – I’m so glad I bought it.  One of the best $15 I ever spent.  Tomorrow I’ll try with breastmilk.

I woke up this morning with a horrible migraine.  I slept on and off until nearly 1, and didn’t leave the bed in hopes of making it stop.  I felt so terrible I started getting nauseous again.  Curtis brought Tempest in to nurse, and nap (or try to) – but he tried to stretch out the times in-between to two hours by playing and occupying her as much as he could.  It helped.

When I finally lumbered out of bed I tried a bit of coffee, and some Tylenol – I wanted desperately to get rid of the pain.  I remembered my midwife talking about a few migraine medications that are safe to take while nursing, and I wish I’d inquired more.

Within a few hours the migraine was better, but the nausea was worse.  I couldn’t eat dinner.  I tried to choke down a bit of pizza, but it only made the nausea worse.  I felt so tired, and was getting a fever.  I went to lay down in bed with Tempest in hopes she’d sleep.  But she didn’t.  She kicked my stomach.  I felt like heaving.  Curtis took her out for an hour drive to let me rest.  She fell asleep as soon as he hit the road, and barely woke when he took her out of the carseat.  Somewhere between the bedroom door, and the bed, she woke up completely and wanted to play.  She kicked me some more.  Uggghhh.  I swaddled her tightly so she couldn’t kick, and then tried nursing again.  She fell asleep within twenty minutes.  As soon as I could, I got up and went to the bathroom to camp out next to the toilet.  After a half hour of sitting there fighting my nausea, I realized it wasn’t going to go away until I threw up. 

I had curtis help me into a hot shower.  It worked.  Within 45 seconds the nausea reached a peak and got sick.   I felt better afterwards.  Some.  Though very embarrassed, because the door was open.  I have a really big issue with being sick and anyone being able to hear me, want to come in, help me, or anything.  I want to be left completely alone, no helpful words, no voices, no offers to hold my hair back.  I’m worse when other people are sick, it makes me horribly uncomfortable.  I can’t even be in the same house.  I’ll be a terrible mom to a sick kid…

My fever broke shortly after, but started climbing again.  I dressed warmly and got under a thick blanket to raise my temperature.  I feel that helping a fever is the best way for your body to fight off your illness; after all a fever is a good thing, not a bad thing, it’s your body working.  Supressing it only drives the illness deeper into your body, and prevents you from healing properly.

Within an hour or two I felt well enough to lay down and rest.  I slept next to Tempest for another two hours.  I got up at 2:30am and felt sick again.  I don’t want to lay back down, for fear I’ll start throwing up.  I’m carrying around a bucket.  I wish I had some Gravol.  But we ran out two days ago when my mother raided the bottle.

No woman in my family has ever had the flu, regardless of even being in close contact or caretaking someone with it.  No woman in my family has ever received the flu shot either (the joke that it is…) – I know this isn’t the flu, especially since I’ve been feeling this way on and off for more than a week, and my fever isn’t high enough.  This is just a peak.  Blech.  At least I know I’ll only get better from this point on.

I’m torn between wanting to pick up gravol, and encouraging being ill if I’m still sick tomorrow.  I know the best thing is to cleanse, but I loathe nausea.

Curtis mentioned this evening that he’s thankful I’m nursing, because I’m giving Tempest the antibodies to fight this off.  Even if she does get sick, I’ve been giving her my antibodies for days, and it won’t be as severe.  That made me feel good.

— Babs



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