Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Dazed and Confused

Jack's dazed and I'm confused. Or I'm dazed and Jack's confused. He doesn't want to nurse. Or, he does want to nurse but gets frustrated. Or he doesn't want to nurse and I get frustrated. Or something.

See what I mean about the whole dazed and confused bit? I think the sleep deprivation is getting to us.

Jack has been getting very upset in the middle of nursing sessions, and we can't figure out why. He throws his head around, yells, squeals, and arches his back. He gets really worked up and it takes a lot of calming down before he'll try again. It's been going on for 4-5 days now. He takes my milk just fine from a bottle. It doesn't happen every nursing session and it's usually the worst when he's the crankiest (tiredest). Some ideas:
  1. Maybe the thrush (which we both still have) is giving him mouth pain
  2. Maybe nursing is causing his GI tract to get going, and that hurts
  3. Maybe he's upset because my milk comes too fast (which it does at various points)
  4. Maybe he's upset because my milk comes too slow (which it does at various points, too)
  5. Maybe he wants comfort, not milk
  6. Maybe he's got a bit of reflux
  7. Maybe he's cranky because he's hungry
  8. Maybe he's cranky because he's tired (hungry-->tired = vicious cycle)
  9. Maybe he likes the bottle better than me. :(
It was so bad last night (he wouldn't take any milk from me), that Greg gave him a bottle of milk I had pumped. It was so bad early this morning (he woke up at 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6am...), that I brought him into bed with us at 3am to calm him down.

I called a local La Leche League support person. She believes it is a combination of my overactive letdown / oversupply (milk = too fast, lactose = too much) and his growth spurt (6 weeks is often a tough time). She feels quite certain that he is wanting to control the flow of milk and getting frustrated when it doesn't come at the speed he wants. Basically, she thinks he's cranky. She also felt very sure that if we give it some time, we'll get our lovely, easy-as-pie baby back.

I'd like to believe her. I also feel like it's got to be more than that. I swear he already went through his growth spurt, right at 6 weeks, when he wanted to nurse all the time. Now, it's not exactly that he wants to nurse all the time... it's that he thinks he wants to nurse but doesn't like what he gets. I know that the overactive letdown is upsetting to him (imagine sipping away at a latte and then having someone dump a whole cup into your mouth at once), but we've had that issue from the beginning.

I hate that he doesn't want to nurse consistently, and it's so sad when he's hungry but can't get what he wants. I hope that this problem is temporary.

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