Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I got one!

So after 5 weeks of trying to capture one of Reese's smiles on camera...I got one! Actually, I got quite a few. Nothing makes me happier than seeing my precious little munchie smiling at me. Here's the proof:




Too funny!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Our Tucson Weekend

We took our first trip with Therese this weekend, unfortunately it was due to a death in the family.

Last week we were saddened to hear that one of Aaron's cousins had passed away over Labor Day weekend. He was a soldier in the Army and had a 15 month tour in Iraq to which he safely returned from. He had been having some health issues recently, and after telling family and friends he was going to stay in for the weekend and rest, he was found in his apartment on base the Tuesday after Labor Day. He was only 21. So we headed to Tucson this weekend for his funeral and to spend time with family. Here we are on our way to the service.


Even though the events that brought us to Tucson were unfortunate, we got a chance to reconnect with some old friends from college. Our friends Jenn and Bic housed us for two days and helped turn a sad weekend into one of joy. We had dinner with them Friday night, along with some other friends from college, Ricky and Cara. We had a wonderful time hanging out with them and their little girls and eating great food! Here are some pictures from our night.

Bic, Jenn, and Gwen

Ricky, Cara, and Clair

Reese hanging out with Daddy

Clair getting into the cookies

Cara and Gwen

Aaron and Clair

Bic and Reese

The guys

The girls

The whole group

Thanks Bic and Jenn for everything that you did to help make our weekend a little bit sweeter. Love you guys.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

We're sleeping a lot around here...

Since around 7 weeks, Therese has been sleeping through the night. I've heard that "sleeping through the night" is normally about 4-5 hours, but Therese skipped that and went straight to 8-9 hours at a time! Her schedule is roughly 8pm-4am and it has been so nice for all of us.

**An added bonus, I'm having a little more luck latching her. It is hit-or-miss every feed, but at least we're having some good ones. I'm not giving up just yet.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

At a Crossroads

I have been struggling tremendously with nursing since little Therese was born. I'll give you a little background on what has been happening:

While in the hospital, I became very sore and scabbed over. The two lactation consultants helped me everyday with the latch to ease my pain and while helping, they found that Therese was slightly tongue-tied. That means that the frenulum, the tissue that connects the tongue to the mouth, was tight and needed to be clipped by the pediatrician. We asked the pediatrician about it, and they did not agree so we didn't do anything about it. Well, I continued to struggle to get her latched properly, so the consultants gave me a nipple shield. They told me to use it for a week or two until she learned and then I should be okay. It became a huge pain in the butt to use. She would always knock it off, had a shallow latch,and by the end of the month, she was just sucking on the tip like a pacifier.

Since she was still latching improperly with the shield at four weeks, I decided to get her latched properly without it. So, I began slowly introducing the bare breast to her and within a few days we were nursing exclusively without it. It was so exciting for me! But then, the pain increased and didn't stop. I did this for two weeks, curling my toes and crying every time I fed her. I decided to pay a visit to a consultant for help. Upon my visit to her, she said that Therese was tongue-tied. This was the third time I had heard this, so I started to believe it. After that visit, despite getting help with her latch (which wasn't actually incorrect), I still had excruciating pain. The pain in my nipples was so bad that I had shooting pains out to the rest of my breast. I could no longer take the pain and decided to pump and bottle feed her my milk to help myself heal.

In the meantime, I took her back to the pediatrician to have her frenulum clipped. They told me that her tongue did not need to be clipped, so I didn't do it. As much as I wanted to try, clipping it unnecessarily and causing some pain and bleeding just didn't seem right to me. So, I stuck with the pumping. After about a week of losing an enormous amount of sleep and realizing that I could no longer have a life because I was attached to my pump every three hours, I decided to try and latch her again. I am having no success. I don't think she can latch correctly, whether it's her tongue or jaw or whatever. I even took her to an ENT this week to get their opinion. They specialize in tongue-tie issues and told me nothing is wrong with her tongue. What do I do? Do I trust the professionals who all tell me not to mess with her mouth? Or do I trust the 3 consultants who specialize in breastfeeding and see this all the time? There are huge discrepancies between them and I'm not sure why or who to trust.

So, now I am at a crossroads. Do I hang in there hoping the pain gets better? Do I continue to pump and bottle feed her as long as I can? Do I go back to the shield? Or do I swallow my pride and forfeit, giving her formula? This is something that I never wanted to do and I have grieved deeply over this. I have been fighting for this for 2 months. And the worst thing about it is I have a good supply. I have from day one. She has never been underweight, I just can't get her latched correctly despite having proper form. It would be a shame to waste the blessing of an abundant supply. This is a huge loss for me. I feel jipped. I didn't get the birthing experience that I wanted, but I thought to myself, "At least I can still breastfeed." And now, that my not even be true. I'm not sure what I'm going to do, I just know that I can't continue doing what I'm doing.

Smiling

I've been away for awhile. We've been very busy around here, but I thought I would post on the newest development of our little girl.

Therese has been smiling randomly since birth, but since around 5 weeks she has been smiling at us! Smiling because she's happy! I love when I pick her up from her nap, kiss her on the cheek, or after a feeding she decides to give me a huge, crooked smile. It's a little mischievous, but I love it. And not only is she smiling now, but she loves to mimic facial expressions and sounds. She will lift her eyebrows, open her mouth, stick out her tongue or hold a conversation with you. She is so much fun!

I've tried to capture her smile in a picture, but it seems every time I grab the camera, she won't smile for me. Go figure. As soon as I can get one, I'll post.