Friday, July 10, 2009

Baby Beginnings

First of all, my biggest complaint about newborns and even older babies in hospitals is that they are not treated like people. That bugs me. Furthermore, I consistently encounter such disrespect for the nursing relationship, of mom and baby. "Breast is best" but feel free to have this other substandard stuff. You'd think that in the only part of the hospital where people actually WANT to go, people would be more cheerful and more fun. Nope--newborns boil down to numbers. Which is why they like formula, because it's about ounces in and diapers out. With breastmilk, they want it to be numbers, so they have you watch the clock, which doesn't necessarily work that well and can cause problems with moms once they are out of the hospital.

The nurse that was taking care of Tiny Guy upon his readmission on Wednesday afternoon said to me, after the third time that I refused formula for him, that I should prepare to stay a long time, implying that my elitism about formula was dangerous and would impede medical treatment. She was mean and patronizing about the whole thing. The pediatrician wasn't much better although he was polite and respectful, and when the jaundice issue was resolved, he said that my way was his preferred way as well, and that he was glad that I was able to keep Tiny Guy on only breastmilk.

I had to pump a bunch, as I may have mentioned, and I was able to provide him with enough feedings so I didn't take him out from the lights as often. But I produced. And I knew I did and I knew I would. Don't test me.

But really, it's a horrible situation. We stick him in a box for hours at a time and even though we get to touch him, it's not the same. And they make phototherapy blankets, but this hospital doesn't have them. As in, the baby could actually be held while receiving phototherapy instead of being confined to a box. So what do they always try to do when Tiny Guy was raging about having to go back in the box after being out for a feeding and actually getting nice snuggles and milk from the tap? Try to stick a pacifier in his mouth because that's really what he needs. Trying to shut him up. He's mad! We can reach in there and comfort him a little bit, but he's mad. And basically, he would just scream for awhile and then give up. I was standing there in tears when they first put him back in.

A kid with jaundice...file that under "everyone has problems." You know, you have to go back the hospital. Big deal. Plenty of kids spend some time in the NICU, which is also pretty scary and of course the parents get said, but still, everyone has problems. Couple that with the fact that my older son is also in the hospital and won't be out for awhile, and will likely never be all that healthy...and these wonderful hormones...bad scene. I'm usually tough as heck but I really need to be careful right now as I don't know how I'll respond to things. Best be gentle with me.

Tiny Guy loves to eat. Loves to snuggle. I wouldn't be surprised if some of the drama in his early days is causing him to want me more, or if it's just his nature, or if it's just normal baby stuff. He is an ordinary baby. And a roly-poly one too! He is already back up to birthweight at 5 days old. Again...loves to eat.

He also wears his cloth dipes very well. And they do the job. They are bulky on him, but so are all cloth diapers on newborns. It allows his pants to stay up. He can wear the 0-3 month pants with the cloth dipes.

The whole thing is so contrived though...having my new son in the house and getting used to him while my big boy is away from the house in the hospital. It wouldn't be out of the question for him to have been out of the house for the first night, maybe, but it's just been so long and I barely get to see The Boy. I miss him so much. He will love Tiny Guy. He already does. Video Evidence.


The Reluctant Crunchy Mama said...

I'm not surprised that you were able to pump and feed Tiny Guy, despite what the stupid people were saying. You're persistent, you do what you know is best for your kid and, well, you kick ass! I remember reading your posts on WebMD about how much milk you pumped for The Boy. You're so good at it!

I can't believe that nurse. I can't imagine how frustrating dealing with her was. Could you request a different nurse if you get her again?

It really bugs me that so many people act like us breastfeeding moms are wierd, as if the milk our bodies make is not as good as formula. But we know the truth, so let them look at us funny all they want!

I remember my postpartum days. It was not easy, to say the least. My baby was healthy, at home, and I did not have another baby in the hospital. So I say do what you can to take care of yourself and be gentle to yourself, not like you have the time, I know. Ignore the morons and lean on your family and on us, the fans of Logical Mommy! Big hugs from one "weird" breastfeeding mommy to another!

areyoukiddingme said...

I had the same problem in the hospital when I had my daughter. I was pressured by everyone (nurses, pediatricians, my husband, finally even the lactation consultant) to supplement with formula. My milk didn't come in, even though I was there for a 4 day post c-section stay. I wanted to nurse exclusively, and the nursery staff got progressively more irritable with me as the days went on. My daughter was even perfectly happy during the day, so I wasn't quite sure why the pressure was on. I finally had to cave on day three when she had lost a full pound of her birth weight.

I did end up supplementing for her whole first year, because I never did produce enough breast milk. She also weaned herself after a year.

I hope that the jaundice is resolved soon, and the Boy is home again as quickly as possible, so you can enjoy your whole family at once. Good luck, and stay strong!

Rebecca said...

It is really a shame that hospitals turn patients into numbers. It is even more disgusting that the same is the case with babies. Sad really.

Kudos to you for sticking your ground, and not letting them push you around!

And, that video is SO cute! :)

Michelle said...

I had the opposite. The nurses treated me like a dog when my milk didn't come in right away. Basically, they led me to believe I was starving her and there was nothing to be done about it. Way to make a new mom feel even worse. She did much better OUT of the hospital but we never really got the BF thing. If I had more "you can do it" from the nurses instead of "what is wrong with you" I think we could have succeeded.

the mol said...

Unfortunately it is more so with babies because they can't ask for what they need. Even The Boy who is so young gets treated more like a person because he is more communicative, but also because they know him so well. Luckily Tiny Guy got better nurses after that, who know us and know that we know what we are doing.

Sarah R said...

It is so frustrating that so many doctors and nurses are so STUPID! They are molded to today's ways, not thinking that things have been done the way they were done for zillions of years. Gah!!!

mommybird said...

If the stupid hospital staff would back off I think a lot more women would have success breastfeeding. Nothing like scaring new moms into taking the "easy" route. Although I think breastfeeding, once you manage to get into a good routine, is a million times easier than bottle feeding.

I hope things start to slow down for you a little bit and that the Boy can come home with his little brother soon. You and your family are always in my thoughts and prayers.

the mol said...

Someone said that the difficulty level of formula feeding is a 1 in the hospital and consistently a 4 once you are out. Breastfeeding is a difficulty of 7 or 8 for a month or a few weeks and goes down to 2. If people don't fully understand that, they should be reminded of THAT and not duped into giving up.