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Can someone remind me it's all worth it? And a question about reflux.

(27 Posts)
Renwein Sat 20-Jun-09 15:34:26


Hoping for a bit of moral support. My DS2 is 6 days old and my DS1 is 3 years, 10 months. DS2 is basically treating me like a human dummy - would love to be breastfed all day and night on and off between snoozing for twenty minutes or so. This would be fine, apart from me needing to sleep and having another child to look after. I'm not surprised by it at all as DS1 was exactly the same. I'm in a much better place than I was at this stage with DS1 who I felt like putting up for sale on ebay - much easier delivery and I don't feel completely overwhelmed and inadequate when faced with a small baby like I did first time round. I know it gets better because I bf DS1 for 14 months, including carrying on with the morning and evening for 4 months after going back to work. But it is very gruelling and hard work and feels all a bit thankless. I can't say I'm really a baby person - I've enjoyed DS1 more and more the older he has got and I love it now that he is a pre-schooler so it just feels like a period I have to get through. I know there's not much I can do apart from wait for things to settle down but very grateful for any cheerleading/suggestions.

DH is around the next couple of weeks and DS1 is in nursery three days a week so not too bad in terms of having to look after him as well as endlessly bf. My family are at the other end of the country and not very practical or supportive anyway so I have not got much practical help for after DH gets busier. Have got DH sitting with DS2 for a couple of hours just after I've fed him in the early hours so that I can go to another room and have a sleep, which is good. DH is obviously tired (but not as tired as me) and is being a bit grumpy with DS1 for things like wetting his pants, which I'm finding a bit difficult to cope with. DS1 is being pretty good and not really acting up at all, which is amazing considering that he is a real mummy lover.

Sorry for long, hormonal post-natal ramble. I do have a practical question too. DS2 has obviously got a degree of reflux - wakes up with a real cry of pain and either posetting or milk coming out of his nose a while after he's been fed. It's obviously upsetting for DS2 and makes the nights that bit harder for me - not only doing three feeds but holding DS upright for twenty minutes each and then comforting him when he wakes up with the reflux a couple of times after each feed. I mentioned it to the midwife when she came round yesterday but she didn't really say anything. Another midwife visit on Monday. Should I push to get him looked at or do I just need to keep doing what I'm doing and wait for it to go away - have googled and done the things suggested like holding him upright after feeds and raising the head of the cot.

Better go as can hear grizzling...


PlumBumMum Sat 20-Jun-09 15:40:49

My ds was exactly like this and one night I put his bouncy chair in his cot and he slept in that, it let me get more than 20 mins sleep

PlumBumMum Sat 20-Jun-09 15:45:25

Oh sorry and remember it is worth it, dh and I actually laugh now at the midnight/2am in the morn drives to get him over to sleep, ds is going to be 6 in August!

jellybeans Sat 20-Jun-09 16:32:32

Hi i totally sympathise. My DS is now 7 months and has severe reflux (he chokes and stops breathing) and didn't sleep more than 20 mins at night for 10 weeks! Was bf all day/night. I was a zombie and struggled with my 4 other DC and school runs etc. It was like torture with no sleep and constant screaming/sick/choking.

The good news is that, although he still has reflux, things are alot better, he slept 5 hrs a night from 10-12 weeks (about 11 lbs) He would not sleep flat/propped so at 8 weeks, we bought an amby hammock, he instantly slept much better, he loves movement. Before that he slept in his vibrating chair.

He is under a paed for the reflux (he was admitted via a and e) and on an acid suppressant and motility drugs, really helps the irritability. I am still bf every 2-3 hrs but he sleeps 6-8 hrs a night now.

LittleMammaTo2 Sat 20-Jun-09 16:54:46

You poor thing. BF is hard enough, having a very young baby is hard enough and having another child to look after is hard enough without the added complication of reflux.

I can't offer any advice re the reflux but am sure there will be a lot of people on here who have been through the same thing.

BF is worth it, I fed DD (now 2 and a bit) and am currently BF DS (4 months). He's a bit of a constant feeder/grazer. He goes no longer than three hours between feeds day or night and struggles with wind. In between feeds he spends the majority of his time grumbling cos he needs to burp or the other end so I can sypathise with feeling like you never get to put them down.

Just remember, it does get better. I keep thinking - only till November then at least he should start sleeping through the night.

Like you I'm not really a baby person either so it doesn't help does it.

You're doing the best you can for your little one and it will all be worth it the end. Chin up xxx

Schoolgirl Sat 20-Jun-09 17:01:29

God - I feel your pain. DS is 6 months now and he had reflux (although not as bad as Jellybean's dc by the sound of things). Because he was gaining weight, GP wouldn't prescribe anything. Couple of practical things which could be a quick fix:

1. Put a couple of towels under the mattress to raise it up slightly. Other people said put books under the two top legs but I couldn't do that so it made it level! Obviously the amby and the bouncy chair in the cot would have a better effect but I was wary of doing anything which I would have to "undo" later iyswim.

2. After feeding him, keep him upright for about half-an-hour. Bouncy chair should be fine in the day. At night, I used to prop him up on pillows next to me for a while.

3. Burp, burp and burp some more after feeding. I have to rub and pat DS for a good 20 minutes after a feed. I used to have terrible trouble getting him to burp until a fellow Mum showed me a technique whereby you sit the baby on your lap, facing you and slowly move them side to side - it helps to sing a stupid song at the same time to make it fun!

4. Co-sleeping. I didn't get on with feeding him lying down because he got such bad wind and if he fed laying down he inevitably spent the rest of the night puking it up. I did however have him in bed with me so that I could feed him, burp him, sit him up for a while and lay him back down. I'd often fall asleep doing any one of these things and any sleep is good sleep, right?

Hope some of that is helpful otherwise feel free to ignore it and keep saying the MN mantra "This too shall pass". If it's any consolation (although it probably feels ages away) DS is 6 and a half months and it's finally starting to get better now that he's weaning. Good luck

AbricotsSecs Sat 20-Jun-09 17:05:57

Message withdrawn

Renwein Sat 20-Jun-09 19:42:58

Thanks very much for all your lovely posts and helpful suggestions. Have a moment of silence with both DS asleep (for the time being). DS1 was at a party all afternoon (a nursery mum kindly took him) so he crashed out nice and early.

On the reflux, it sounds as if the drugs are worth taking. I think I will push midwife on Monday and assuming I don't get anything out of her then go to the GP, hoping he is more sympathetic than yours Schoolgirl. DS2 isn't back to his birthweight yet but I am fairly sure he will be soon and that his weight gain will be good as he is certainly feeding a lot (!) and not bringing up large quantities, just distressed by it.

Hoochie, will definitely try the dairy thing. I'm not a big fan of dairy anyway - only have milk on my cereal and in tea and the odd slice of cheese on toast so it won't be any hardship to try for a week. But he had his first refluxy attack in the night we stayed in hospital when the only milk he had taken was the first skin to skin feed after being born (not interested in feeding for 24 hours after that) and I don't know if the dairy would get through to colostrum. Still, worth a try.

Off again to DS2.

AbricotsSecs Sun 21-Jun-09 11:07:10

Message withdrawn

MamaG Sun 21-Jun-09 11:12:13

Just want to add my support, can't offer any additional advice, just another Mum sayign "you can do it!"

Congrats on DS2 by the way

Renwein Wed 24-Jun-09 11:51:44

Thanks, midwife did not turn up on Monday so stayed in all day and didn't take a nap whilst waiting for her - grrr. She is supposed to be coming and weighing today, which I hope will go well - usual paranoia about sleepy feeding and how much milk he is getting. DS2 has just pretty much settled himself to sleep after waking up when put down in his chair so that's a good sign, though I bet the midwife will come round now. The number of shrieking and back arching episodes seem to have reduced, though still at least one a day and I'm beginning to wonder if they aren't as much wind related as reflux related because the other night it stopped after DS2 did a big fart!

Plus I suddenly twigged that the drugs I was given to take after my third degree tear (two lots of antibiotics and some lactulose laxative) were likely to be giving him tummy trouble, which a quick google search confirmed. Don't know why they couldn't have said anything at the hospital. Have finished the antibiotics now and am supposed to be taking the lactulose for four more days but think I will bin it and go for lots of fruit and water instead. I had already halved the dose due to it being too effective... So, I think I'll hold off on asking for reflux meds for a bit longer and see what happens.

Schoolgirl Wed 24-Jun-09 22:50:01

So glad it's getting better smile

re the lactulose, I binned that too. Try tinned pears and prunes - worked a treat for me (along with the fruit and water of course). Sorry if TMI grin

JennyPenny22 Wed 24-Jun-09 23:29:38

Just wanted to say - I sounded much like you about 6 weeks ago. We tried gavison and she was like a different child. But already, at 8 weeks she has outgrown her reflux/colic or whatever it was.

Or thinking about it, it could possibly have been my diet change as it was not long after I started following slimming world. Obviously I am not saying to go to slimming world - lol. I just mean I cut out a LOT of crap that I was eating, and started eating lots of lovely fresh homecooked meals. So maybe there was something in my diet causing her pain. Maybe chocolate or something blush.

Anyway, I was mainly posting to say that it does get better, and will do - soon.

And i have a 16 month age gap so I understand how hard it is when you want to spend time with an older child.

Renwein Fri 26-Jun-09 08:58:16

Hmm, well it all got a whole lot worse. When the midwife finally turned up at 4.45 on Wednesday, DS2 had lost 13 percent of his birth weight so we got called back into hospital. Frantic packing and rush to pick up DS1 from nursery on the way. Paeds said he had to be topped up with expressed milk or formula if there wasn't enough expressed milk and that they would give him a feeding tube if not. So spent a gruelling night pumping every few hours and getting less and less as the night went on. By the end of the night I was topping up with formula because I wasn't getting anything. DS2 put on 200g so they let us go home yesterday.

But I feel completely let down by the system . The miidwives couldn't be arsed to turn up so that we would have had an earlier warning about the weight and could have focussed more on trying to get DS2 to wake up. The midwife who finally turned up had no idea she was covering a missed appointment and said they were having trouble because nobody understood their new phone...

And felt completely blackmailed into topping up by the paeds by the threat of a prolonged stay in hospital (which upset DS1) and the feeding tube. The bloods showed that DS2 wasn't dehydrated so I didn't feel such a heavy handed approach was necessary.

There were a couple of feeds where DS2 refused the breast and I thought it was all over but thankfully I seem to have got him back on and we are topping up with formula. I don't really get on with pumping at the best of times and the night in hospital was so gruelling I couldn't face doing that regularly. Last night DS2 had some good breast feeds and not too much formula. Plus some proper mustard coloured poos where we had only had green before. So hopefully we are getting there. Plan is to get him to put on enough weight so they are not breathing down our neck and then hope he takes less and less formula.

Am also a bit clueless about this formula feeding lark. Had to do a mad dash to mothercare to get the kit and frantic read of birth to 5 to see what to do.

Better go as DS1 harrassing me and wanting attention...

StealthPolarBear Fri 26-Jun-09 09:02:14

Oh I don't believe this - this thread was in general so positive I'm so sorry you have been let down like this by the MWs and have been pressured into formula top ups (no idea if they were necessary or not, but it sounds as though if you'd had better support it would never have come to this). Glad he is taking more feeds and pooing lots - that sounds very positive.

tiktok Fri 26-Jun-09 09:03:38

Renwein, I have to go out in a minute, but can I just check one thing?

Your baby put on 200g overnight?


7 ounces?

Something tells me scales are not telling the whole, accurate truth.

Or do you mean 20g?

Either way - you've had a horrible time, and you can complain when the dust settles.

You will soon be able to ditch the formula.

NoTart Fri 26-Jun-09 09:40:15

Renwein, so sorry about how you were treated in the hospital.. the same happened to me, the blackmail to top up or not be allowed home, and then the realisation that they had calculated DD2s weight wrongly and there had NEVER been a problem. The constant pumping to try and give that, the paed insisting I stop bf because they wanted to see exactly how much was drinking : (

I hope things ease up on you sooner rather than later. Keep telling yourself you´re doing a great and important job! You are!

Schoolgirl Fri 26-Jun-09 10:05:02

Oh gosh -I'm so sorry to read this. What a crappy crappy experience sad

Pumping milk is hard enough as it is without being stuck in hospital overnight, worried sick about both kids with so called experts breathing down your neck angry It's not wonder nothing came out in the end. Like Tiktok I do wonder about the weight gain and what the merit of checking it was since clearly they couldn't tell overnight whether or not he was actually improving hmm

Glad you're home now and don't worry about the top-ups. It's early days yet and you will be able to phase them out as the weeks go on. DS was on top-ops in the first two weeks because of jaundice. Again, it was the paediatrician who forced me to give him top-ups at every feed despite saying that she thought the jaundice was due to our competing bloodtypes rather than it being bf jaundice!

Anyway, I dutifully did as I was told the week I was at the hospital and then phased them out over the next two weeks. I was told to give him a bottle a week to make sure he didn't reject the bottle when I returned to work but I phased that out by four weeks 'cos it seemed like too much hard work grin

Keep your chin up and do complain about your midwives and hospital as soon as you feel up to it.

Renwein Fri 26-Jun-09 10:28:57

Well actually he put on 130g, when I look at it properly - birthweight on 14/6 3420, dropped to 3100 on 19/6 and 2970 on 24/6 and back up to 3100 yesterday. Though of course on entirely different sets of scales each time. DH has already left an irate voicemail with the head of midwifery (though typically he wasn't sure it was her voicemail despite that being the contact number in the book) and we will definitely put it all down in writing when the dust has settled.

Oh well, waiting for the midwife again but just had another good bf plus 40 ml of formula so DS2 is looking v full.

tiktok Fri 26-Jun-09 14:08:45

Renwein - babies do not put on 130g overnight. Even the fastest growing bruiser would take 2-3 days to zoom up the weights that quick.

Your baby has regained his birthweight at age 10-11 days.

This is well within normal.

I think the home weights were wrong.

Fully support your dh and his angry voicemail

Renwein Sun 28-Jun-09 13:49:31

I guess the issue is that he hasn't yet put on his birthweight - just gone back to having lost ten percent and we won't get everyone off our backs until he does regain his birthweight.

But things are looking up. I think things were maybe a bit off with my supply before and I'm now feeling much more like I did when feeding DS1 at this stage (i.e. leaky) and feeling a much stronger letdown when feeding. Also getting two or three yellow nappies a day as opposed to a green one every couple of days (one of which he did immediately the paediatrician took off his nappy - I was so proud). Can't help thinking the antibiotics might have affected supply, though DS1s godmother who is a GP thinks it would affect the taste of the milk and possibly cause tummy trouble, but not affect supply.

I am continuing to offer the formula as I am so fearful of being sent back to hospital and just can't face pumping. But he does seem to be taking less and less, or taking it and then throwing it back up again. He wasn't weighed on Friday - as the midwife thought it wouldn't show anything meaningful (first sensible thing anyone has said for ages) but am expecting someone round this afternoon. Looking at DS2, he seems to fill his clothes more than previously so I hope he will have gained.

But all this has really knocked my confidence in my ability to bf. Such a different experience from DS1 who was an 8lb 13 bruiser and a terrifically efficient feeder who scarcely dipped below his birthweight, then shot up to the 95th centile, where he has stayed ever since. DS1 was also a v grumpy and unsettled boy, which clearly has its benefits... I have got help coming tomorrow for a week (of the paid variety as both our families are far away and not very practical) so will hopefully feel a bit less on my own in all this.

tiktok Mon 29-Jun-09 09:46:12

Sorry, Renwein, I misread your post as him having regained his birthweight.

It's a real shame your confidence has been affected, but from what you say, you are on the road to sorting it all out

Renwein Mon 29-Jun-09 19:08:28

Thanks - he had gained yesterday. Not yet up to his birthweight but only 100g short and he has been feeding well today. So hopefully nearly there. No more weighing till Friday so we can relax and do our thing for a while.

posieparker Mon 29-Jun-09 19:11:28

My last two dcs had reflux issues. We didn't get dc3 diagnosed and were fobbed off, dc4 has Gaviscon and then rantitide (or something). Both really helped.

posieparker Mon 29-Jun-09 19:16:01

PS I found co sleeping the ONLY way to sleep with both of them as they fed nearly every hour. Neither refulx babies would have a dummy but I would definitely try, I think dc1 may have had reflux issues aswell as he vomitted all of the time.

BTW I assume your baby is arching his back post feed???

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