I'll do the Braeden updates first on this post because then I feel the strong need to vent and not all of you will want to listen I'm sure (although you might get a good laugh).
Braeden is still having several SVT episodes several times a day right now but for the most part they seem to be able to pull him out with the 'ice shocker'. We are still waiting for the latest Cardiologist's report/recommendations to see if we are going to continue on the same path with the same drug or switch it up. It seems that the effectivenss of the Propanol's increased dose might not have kicked in yet but I am nail biting in the meantime during each SVT episode. Patience, patience, patience. He was just so sweet yesterday, just being held (hand on head and other hand on foot). The nurses all seem to comment on how settled he is when I am there, so that is reassuring.
The fabulous (and much less stress-causing news) is that he is fairing better and better on the new respirator and there is even talk of being able to possibly pull him off it soon. How fabulous would that be?! He is getting more active which is so fantastic but not so good for the constant pulling on the tubes/wires around him. He is still having a great output of urine which means his weight is slowly going down and he has been spotted by two nurses now with his eyes open! I've yet to witness this but am hopeful that I will get a chance to see him awake today. I keep timing it so that he is somewhat drugged when I see him due to the changing of his systems and such but sooner or later I'll get to see him awake, I'm sure of it.
So here comes the massive bitch mode, men you may not really care to go any further....I'm still struggling (there must be a stronger word than that) to produce milk. I was trucking along, getting a bit more each day and persevering and got so that I was able to produce up to 10 mls a feed (pumping that is) and now have gone back to N.O.T.H.I.N.G! How is that even possible??? Have boobs, should be able to travel right?! One would think.... I did have trouble with T and Ry as well but hey, there were 8 and 9 lb babies, not only 4 lbs at start. How is it that one won't beat themselves up over not being able to feed their child? The only thing that has changed is that I'm taking MORE motilium (domperidone) than I was and am now producing LESS. It is somewhat frustrating as hell to drag one's butt out of bed in the middle of the night every two or three hours to pump and to not even produce enough to bottle (we are talking drops only last night) out of both breasts combined. Yes, I'm trying to get sleep. Yes, I am trying to remember to eat. Yes, I am chugging water at every turn. Yes, I am trying to keep my stress (HA HA HA) to a minimum. No I can't take fenugreek as he is a preemie and yes, I might even be willing to try Sumyu's fish/mango soup combo for production at this point (still can't say it without grimacing though Sumyu!). I am however more open to the Tiger Milk. Obviously the saying 'it is only what is on the inside that counts applies here as well'. So how, how, how does one make happier boobs?? I chatted with the 'queen of all things' (my name for her because she is the super queen of breast feeding and very kind and patient) Noreen, Head Lactation Consultant, at the NICU on Thurs when I noticed that things were still not really making stuff happen. She gave me a few pointers like, keep pumping both at the same time (do you KNOW how much coordination that takes??? How's that for a visual you didn't need??), manually expressing (check), and when she took out her calculator to add up how much I was producing a day she shut it without inputting any numbers and said to increase my doses of motilium. So increased the dose and now I am pumping even less!!! WTH! I wouldn't even bat an eye if he was born full term and my milk supply was less than stellar (as it was for T and Ry), I supplemented with formula with both T and Ry and they survived just fine (of course I struggled through feedings and pumpings and beat myself up for it...). The biggest problem now is that I KNOW how important breast milk is to preemies and how formula should be avoided if possible. Formula can lead to issues in the intestines and we don't need anymore issues!!! I am just hoping so much that because he's functioned (pooping and all) with the little milk he has received from me that the formula will be okay.
Bottom line is that I feel just a tad bit of failure at this. I know, don't be so hard on yourself, you are still healing yourself, once you feel better....yadda yadda. I can't help but feel discouraged, one should be able to utilize one's prominent body parts for the appropriate use no? I see women in the pump room with tiny boobs producing ounces and ounces of milk, not just mls. I know it's not about size (what am I a man now?) it's how well they decide to behave. So a-pumping I'll keep going and a-stressing I'll keep going, hopefully the pumping will win in the end. I'll keep up my circus act (double pumping), drinking my tiger's milk, and try to stop bursting into tears and crying when the nurses tell me they are 'using formula for this feed when I talk to them'. Double up girls, here we go! I am Earth Mother hear me hum? Ooohhmmm...(gak, does this mean no more Ativan or Huggies in my future?)