Updated: May 1
Hello, it’s been awhile!
I decided to write again this month because of some new changes in my breastfeeding journey. It never really stays stagnant for long does it! I didn’t have much updates for the 4th month because I’d thought things had pretty much stabilised by then. But 5th month was a total turn of events.
From suffering from engorgement and clogged ducts in my first few months of breastfeeding, I started to experience a plunge in my supply in my 5th month when baby went through some sort of a milk strike! If you followed my previous posts on my breastfeeding journey, I mentioned how my baby used to be a hangry one, crying fiercely for milk and she would latch for a really long time. It could go on for an hour when she was a newborn and eventually decreased to a more manageable duration of around 20-30min.
In the 5th month, that completely changed! I could no longer tell when she was hungry because she never really asked for milk, and whenever I latched her during the daytime, she would only suckle for 5min or less on one boob and stop completely. And how did I know she didn’t want anymore? She would clamp down on my nipple with her gums/lips and pull. Ouch! I wasn’t sure whether it was because my supply had dipped, that’s why she didn’t drink, or whether it was because she didn’t drink, therefore my supply dropped. Instead of latching during the day, she became a night drinker, waking up several times in the motn and refusing to go back to sleep unless I latched her. I stopped pumping in the motn for a few weeks because I was just so exhausted from waking up every 2-4 hours with her, and anyway, I was latching so often at night that I had no need to pump anyway.
This went on for almost a month I think? And I really noticed that my boobs just didn’t really seem to refill much anymore, and I was really worried that baby wouldn’t have enough milk to drink! I started to eat more lactation cookies and even pumped after latching, which I never used to do (which probably explains the dip in supply). What some mummies told me was that my supply would naturally increase again when baby’s demand came back, but I wasn’t sure. Thankfully with the pumping, I do feel like it helped somewhat, even though I really only had a few drops of milk during some pumping sessions because my boobs were literally EMPTY.
Also, from nursing every 1.5 hours > 2 hours ish, I now only have to latch her every 3-4 hours during the day. We’ve got a bit of a schedule going these days with her sleep (more about that another time!), and so things are more predictable these days which definitely helps! I still constantly worry that baby is not getting enough milk (it’s impossible to tell with latching??), but I just remind myself that as long as she is peeing and gaining weight decently, it means that she’s got enough. On a side note…I’m kinda annoyed that Rascal & Friends diapers don’t have a pee indicator from M size onwards -.- because it was exactly at this point that I need the pee indicator to know whether bb has enough output! And I bought 6 packets of those diapers before I knew that. Ugh.
Anyway, I really feel that since my supply dipped in this past month, my boobs have really been able to hold milk for much longer durations. Because my last feed for baby before her bedtime is a bottle, that means I don’t latch at that time. And I actually go past that 4hr mark, and my boobs don’t even feel full when I finally pump. Now that baby is sleeping better at night, I’m reallyyyyyy contemplating whether I should drop my motn pump. And I actually did skip it on some nights, and I managed to last 8hrs without leaking :O omg…haha I’m in a dilemma whether that’s a good or bad thing. Still thinking how much stores of milk I need, but at the moment my freezer is still exploding. I’m going to take the covid jab at the end of this month, and I’m thinking I might just pump & dump since I’ve got all that stock to use up anyway. I’ll miss latching though :’) I do hope bb will not reject my boobs after that. Heh.
My fellow breastfeeding mummies, did y’all continue to latch if you took the jab?