It’s been a hard week. Things haven’t been going well, breastfeeding wise. After our two miracle latches, he started refusing the breast again, and started screaming and clawing. Absolutely heartbreaking, after having the wonderful bonding experience of finally breastfeeding him. I’m ashamed to admit I felt a little frustrated, he knew how to do it so why had he suddenly stopped? I felt totally rejected again, and remembered all the reasons I decided to stop trying in the first place. George was clearly picking up on my negative emotions, despite me trying to stay cheery and sing his favourite songs to him (which worked before). Babies are so sensitive and clever!
So I decided to back off for a little bit. I said to Katy that I would have a week of no breastfeeding attempts, and stick to giving him plenty of cuddles, play, and bonding time that has nothing whatsoever to do with feeding. And I’ve been thoroughly enjoying it! I really feel like my bond is being strengthened day by day, George and I are really enjoying some quality time together without pressure.
One thing we are keeping up is a new bottle feeding technique that the lactation consultant suggested, to encourage George to work harder to get the milk out. We sit him upright, and tilt the bottle so it’s horizontal. Then we put the teat to his lips to encourage him to suck it into his mouth and drink. He’s been getting on so well, very minimal fuss even at times when no milk has come out. This fills me with hope that he won’t be getting as frustrated as he has been when he breastfeeds again.
It’s been a week since our last successful breastfeeding session. Previously I had been following my Mummy Instincts and just trying to feed him when I felt he was in the mood and it might work. Then after he latched and fed I decided to try him after each nap. This obviously didn’t work, so I stopped. But a couple of days ago I thought it might be a good time to try him, we’d had some really good bonding time. He’d just woken up and was a little hungry, but still quite sleepy. I was pleasantly surprised that he didn’t scream and push away, and he definitely was interested. He didn’t latch, but I was just happy to see a positive reaction.
So that is where we are. It does feel like we’ve taken two steps backwards, but I can cope with that. It’s going to be a long journey, of course there are bumps on the way, but the end result will be worth it.