So, it's been forever (5+ months... close to forever) since I've updated you on my breastfeeding journey with Felicity. And as I said before, I know you all sit there like "hey, whatever happened with that!?". Or, more accurately, I'm writing it for me :).
Felicity is a nursing champ! When she was a few weeks old, I never thought I'd say that. She LOVES her "nursies"! She continues to nurse before naps and bed, but just over the past month has begun to initiate nursing at other times. It's so sweet to me because Felicity has always enjoyed the pre-sleep nursing sessions, but it's been something I offer and she accepts. Now, she lets me know that she wants to nurse! Felicity will do a few different things to signal this to me. Once, and one time only, she did the sign for "nursies", which was pretty awesome. But otherwise, she either attempts to nurse while I'm fully clothed, or she will bury her head in my chest. I've learned that both of those things signal her wanting to nurse (and yeah, I'm working on her doing the sign instead lol). It's generally when she's getting sleepy or is upset, but sometimes she just does it for (seemingly) no reason and we have a good cuddle and I nurse her. Then we go back to playing. I think those times might be my favorite because I always thought the pre-sleep nursing was about as good as it was going to get- and I was perfectly happy with that, don't get me wrong. But for her to basically say "mom, I want to nurse!" rather than "oh... you're offering the boob? Well, sure!" makes me a happy mama.
The other good news is that I'm basically not pumping anymore. I thought I'd be pumping until she was 1, so it has been a huge relief to have that burden off my shoulders! Since she was nursing more, and because she basically sat on the floor and cried any time I tried to pump, I slowly began to cut pumps out around 5-6 months. Felicity also spends the majority of the night in bed with us and nurses on and off, so then I naturally cut out my 2 middle of the night pumps. At one point, around 7 months, I was still pumping at 10pm, and then she went through a phase of nursing then, too. So I cut that one out, even though that phase did end. The only time I pump now is if she naps in the car, since she would normally nurse before then. Basically, if she's missing one of our normal nursing sessions, I pump. I find that's only 1-2 times a week, generally. SWEET RELIEF. It is so nice to not be tied tot the pump all the time! My quality of life has shot up big time. And the exciting part? The rare times I do pump, I get the same amount as I did before. Small as it is, I'm extremely excited that she's nursing enough that my supply didn't dip by cutting out like 6-8 pumps a day!
I think all the time about the breastfeeding journey for someday-baby #2.... sooo many details like will the baby be tied? Will I have to pump around the clock for months? Do I want to even give the SNS a try again after how much we hated it this time? Do I want to try domperidone for a full supply and not having to worry about donor milk, even with the probable weight gain? Will I make more milk the 2nd time around?
And then I make myself turn my brain off, I cuddle up with my girl, and nurse and look at her sweet little face (and facebook because, hey, she is amazing and precious and beautiful, but I get bored sometimes. Just keeping it real).