Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My Breastfeeding Adventure Part 3 Tandem Breastfeeding

March of 2008 I went back to work after my bonding time with my new baby. Sonny was 13 months old. In April 2008 hubs went back to Texas to have a little fun with his buddies in his band from when he was younger and I went camping with the kids and one of my girls friends and her family. When I got home I was beat, my Mom was in town and offered to take me out to lunch. The food looked good but the smell was making me sick. I thought to my self I know a had a couple beers over the weekend but not anything close to making me sick. Just for fun I took a pregnancy test. I took a positive pregnancy test. I sat down on my bed and cried. I had a baby. I was still breast feeding and co-sleeping. I called my husband and we were both overwhelmed. I was due in December 2008.

I felt really guilty that Sonny wasn't going to get to be the baby. He was my baby. I was in love and I harbored a thought that I was cheating on him by getting pregnant with another baby. My pregnancy was bigger than life. I was sick 24/7 from the moment I found out, he was a high risk and I was getting ultrasounds pretty regular to make sure his condition wasn't causing more issues. Sonny was learning to walk, run, discover seeing things at a new level and exploring everything with his mouth. During my pregnancy he split his chin open twice, his head once, and got a hold of a pill and was kept over night in the hospital. (Cool part of hospitals while breastfeeding is Mama can stay over night and be fed)

In December Declan was born a healthy baby boy. My daughter Marysa was in the delivery room as well as my husband and friend Christina. I was handed my baby while he was still attached to the umbilical cord. I got to experience the natural first bonding of my tiny little guy who crawled his way to my breast. They were full since I was still nursing Sonny. The poor little guy gagged on his first taste.  Later I was advised by the lactation consultant that sometimes the let down will make that happen. Declan however caught on quick.

I was in the hospital over night with my perfect little man. I worried about Sonny and asked to be released home as soon as possible. I don't think I was there even a full 24 hours. I was told it's important for Dad to carry the baby in so your older baby can be loved on by Mama. Sonny could care less I was home. He wanted the car seat he had been playing in for the last few weeks. Hubs set the baby and car seat on the floor, Sonny attempted to sit on the baby. This was going to be fun. Sonny was 21 months old and a big brother.

When Declan needed to eat at first I'd take him in my bedroom for that one on one and I wasn't sure how Sonny would react. Soon Sonny found us  and was right with us sitting next to me and his new baby. Sonny who had been in his crib the last few months of my pregnancy was back in my bed. I should have stayed strong and kept him there. We ended up putting a twin bed along side our bed so everyone would fit. This unfortunately opened our bed up to a litter of kids sleeping with us and me never sleeping because I was making sure no one slept too close to my new baby. Declan eventually moved in to Sonny's crib and Sonny in the bed next to ours. This worked out pretty good while I was nursing both boys.

I often would nurse Sonny first since he would loose interest quickly and then Declan would nurse. This way the let down was over and he could be fed without any problem. The most surprising part for me was Sonny wasn't jealous of his brother and he never tried to push Declan away. I can't say never nursed both boys at the same time. I had seen ways to do it in books however I placed them my own way trying to prevent kicking and all the sweet movements a baby does from bothering my other baby. My biggest issue tandem nursing was the opinions I got from everyone including my loving husband. It was difficult but it was I believe a personal choice between me and my child. I got very little support. Actually no support at all except the high five from the MAs and nurses at our Well baby doctor appointments.

I was able to nurse the boys until Declan was almost two and just after Sonny turned three. A few surprises while I was nursing two different aged babies.
  • Sonny got seedy newborn poop and stopped eating solids for the first week that we brought Declan home.
  • I never thought I'd give my own baby a bottle and I started Sonny on one after he was 21 months old so I wasn't nursing all the time. This was a mistake I recommend to no one. Sonny ended up with cavities and a root canal at three years old.
  • The boys weaned close together.
  • Not a soul supported my choice.
  • I ended up loving both boys with out that cheating fear I had while pregnant.

For me it was the right thing to do in my heart. My advice to any Mama in this position is follow your instinct and do what's right for you and your baby. Breast feeding one of multiple babies is a personal choice. If you need  a friend in your corner I'm only a click away. Happy Breastfeeding!

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