Breastfeeding milestone: 2 years

Monday, December 10, 2012
Our little Turtle-Love turned two on the 5th. How on Earth did we become parents to a toddler???? Today, the 10th, now marks our 2 year anniversary of breastfeeding. Go check out the post I wrote in January recapping our first year - stuff about learning to nurse in the NICU, supply issues, supplementing, etc...

Check it out - Our Breastfeeding Journey Thus Far

We have managed to make it through that, and have continued breastfeeding through my first trimester and part of the second thus far with our second child. Last month we had a bit of trouble when the two of us came down with Thrush.  I noticed Turtle-Love wasn't nursing as much then, and has since slowed down to only 2 times a day during the week, and maybe 3 or 4 times on the weekend unless he isn't feeling well which of course means he is attached to my "boo-boos" all dang day. I'm not complaining though! He has continued to nurse and we have now reached our two year mark with success!

Now I'm facing an issue - not a terrible horrible or pressing issue, but an issue none the less.  I asked Turtle-Love yesterday while he was nursing if he was drinking milk from mama's boo-boos. He said no around my breast, and then continued nursing. I thought maybe he was thinking of the kind of milk he gets in his cereal, because he certainly knows the difference. I decided to try and hand express on the other side, but received nothing. This morning in the shower I attempted to hand express again, and again received nothing.

It would seem that at 18 weeks my supply is either non-existent, or nearly non existent. I asked him before bed if he was getting milk from mommy's boo-boos and he said yes, so who knows. I've already proven by my lack of pumping awesome that my bad just does not produce milk for anything other than my child, my hand included. So maybe I still have a very little supply left. I've never been able to feel let down - so I can't really judge that way. So he is either getting very little milk (trying to watch for swallowing on a nursing while hoping and jumping and climbing toddler is not the easiest thing in the world) or he is dry nursing. To be honest, either way I'm not going to wean him. He will still self wean, and stop nursing when he is ready. I am hoping to boost my supply (or re-lactate) in the next few days, as I'd like to keep giving him breastmilk through flu season at the least. I decided to post this on the Unlatched Facebook Page and see what suggestions were offered.

Check out the responses here (link to the post - in case more are added after this is published!)

I was encouraged to see that there were other women dry nursing during their pregnancies, and I will be checking out some lactation recipes without fenugreek for cookies and other goodies. I don't have access to a pump so that isn't and option for us and Turtle-Love as I mentioned only nurses a handful of times a day. I may try eating more oatmeal - and I already eat a fair amount of sticky rice (had some for lunch!) since my family is Asian. We will see how things go.

I don't have a ton of pictures like I did in my January story, because most of them are of him sleeping and nursing :-) So here is one that I took yesterday morning before he officially woke up ♥


Progesterone....

Tuesday, December 4, 2012
My OB just called. Last week I had an appointment with her (16 week check up and all) and we agreed to have my progesterone levels checked, as the head OB wants me to receive Progesterone injections.  My progesterone levels are normal, but after talking with the head OB for the practice they decided that they are not really indicative of whether or not I will deliver early again, and they are recommending I begin progesterone injections. I'm not against this (as of right now), I just want to make an informed decision...

Some background...
My son is turning 2 tomorrow. (Holy freaking COW!) I delivered him at 35 weeks and a couple days, after my water broke spontaneously in the night, starting my labor. (zero contractions prior to water breaking) He was delivered 8 hours later, and spent 12 days in the NICU with breathing issues. I had no factors that indicated I would deliver early, I had a completely healthy and normal pregnancy. The only potential factors would be stress (our home foreclosed, I delivered 2 days before we were supposed to be out) and he was born with a lung infection - unknown if labor was caused by the infection or if the infection was caused by the rather quick labor.

I'm currently 17 (nearly 18) weeks pregnant with our second child. My OB is suggesting that I start progesterone injections, and mentioned there was a study conducted that clearly showed the benefits of progesterone injections, usually started at 16 weeks, in preventing preterm labor in subsequent pregnancies - I had asked for literature on the subject to help with my informed decision. I'm currently looking for this study, she could not recall the name off hand. The shot used is called 17 hydroxy progesterone. She is recommending that I choose to take the injections, and that if she had previously delivered early she would take them hands down. She says they do not hurt the baby. She is supportive and understanding of me wanting to do my own research to come to an informed decision before moving forward.

Alternatively I can choose to have my cervical length checked routinely starting at 28 weeks, and begin vaginal progesterone at that point (I believe if needed, but potentially regardless of the outcomes - it was not clear during the conversation).

Of course, there is also the option to not take the progesterone.

I'm wanting to find out if there are any side effects to the progesterone injections, and if they can harm the baby or Turtle-Love since he is still nursing. I also want to find out the pros and cons of waiting and having my cervical length routinely checked....

Let the research begin!