Weeping Cherries

faith, family, food and frugality

Nursing Help January 19, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jen @ 7:37 am

Alright, Blogosphere friends, I need help!  I am hoping that among my reader base there are some experienced nursing Mamas out there who can help me out.  I need troubleshooting. The last couple weeks the girls have been eating like crazy and have become very fussy. I know it isn’t a milk supply issue as their weight gain is above average for twins, right on track for singles and they have an enormous amount of wet and dirty diapers. I should say upfront my typical nursing style is on demand as needed but from the beginning they have tended to eat in three hour intervals since they were in the NICU for a bit and that is what they had them doing. They are 5 months old now and the doctor advised me to start solids with oatmeal cereal even though for the other kids I waited longer- twins has been a bit different ballgame. So, I have been giving them oatmeal at 6:30 pm before the bedtime routines start and then a very full nursing at 8:30 to make sure they get the fatty hind milk and not just the watery fore milk. They have fresh diapers and are put down to bed. From there I charted last night’s activity as I thought, just maybe, in my sleep blurriness I was feeling like I was getting up with them more than I really was. Unfortunately, my foggy memory was accurate and they are eating about 8-10 times in the 10-12 hours they sleep. Maybe from looking at this you could give me some ideas to try? I do not have grandiose ideas of sleeping through the night- just a manageable amount of sleep for a functioning Mama. So, fed and to bed at 8:30, Anna wakes at 11 pm eats on right side, then I change her diaper and feed her more on the right side to give her the hind milk, then back to bed. Ruth wakes at 11:30 eats on the left side and falls asleep. Anna wakes at 2:15 am, eats on the right side and falls asleep. Ruth wakes at 4 am, eats on the left side and falls asleep. Anna wakes at 4:20, finishes on the left side from what Ruth didn’t eat and then nurses on the right side and falls asleep. Then Ruth wakes up again at 5:15 am finishes on the right side, falls asleep but not before her crying has woken my older two kiddos up and we are up for the day… I walk through most days in a fog. If I stop for even a moment to eat or nurse I am nodding off. Any help would be appreciated. Oh, and I should mention that I try all other things before nursing at night: pacifier, rocking, check diaper, etc. but if I let them cry any length of time everyone wakes up and then I have to get four kids back to sleep- not fun. Thanks for any ideas!  These two cuties thank you as well.

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8 Responses to “Nursing Help”

  1. Char Haas Says:

    sounds like you could use some help. do the twins take a bottle at all or are they exclusively nursing?If you can get them to take a bottle, for the next couple of nights, pump either before or after they nurse, and store that milk, then get hubby to take a night or two for you. pump when the girls wake and eat, but leave the baby care to hubby. (or grandma, or a postpartum doula). Get a few nights of solid sleep under you, and you’ll be able to think better to figure out the sleep issues. If the girls can’t or won’t take a bottle, get hubs to bring them to you in bed, and allow him to do the rest of the care, just for a week or so, to allow you to catch up on sleep..

  2. chipotleaddict@yahoo.com Says:

    From a Neonatal Pro-Breastfeeding Nurse-

    Looks like:
    -Anna is waking every 2-3.25 hours
    -Ruth is waking every 3-4.5 hours + a 1hr bump

    (both not unusual for individual babies depending on their corrected age)

    Sounds like they will both eat from either breast…

    Are you alternating starting sides? Is one eater more aggressive? If they were in Neonatal hospital care, I’m sure they have bottled.

    I think if supply isn’t an issue, they are growing, meeting corrected gestational milestones, having deep sleep between feedings, wet/ mushy dirty diapers (6-8x/day)… They’re doing great… The sucky part? You’ve just got 2…

    I think you should try a bottle (hopefully, maybe Dad?)at the 3/4 o’clock feeding. Fill ‘em up, top ‘em off, change the diaper, everyone goes back to bed. They may be in a growth spurt, teething(?), cold/hot, just be a little needy. They were preemies I’m assuming?…

    Good luck! They’re gorgeous.
    chipotleaddict

  3. Amy Vandiver Says:

    Hi! I just found your blog today & I love it. I am a pro-breastfeeding mom of 3, one was in the NICU and one was diagnosed with cancer at 7 months & on chemotherapy for a year. So I speak from experience- I know exhaustion. I agree with the other two replies. If they are healthy, which it sounds like they are, I would definitely get Daddy involved in that middle of the night feeding for both of them. Even if they are reluctant to take a bottle, if they are truly hungry they will take one, even if it takes a few nights. Daddy will survive, and you will be refreshed & renewed after a few nights of solid hours of sleep. If Daddy works nights (like mine does) recruit a Grandma, Aunt, etc… anyone close who has offered help- take them up on it. If you are like me, you are so hesitant to ask for help, and often when I was so exhausted I wasn’t thinking rationally. God doesn’t want us to do life alone. :) “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” -Ecclesiastes 4:12 Be encouraged. Email me anytime. Even though I haven’t had twins, I’ve had lots of life experience.

  4. Dani Says:

    First of all, KUDOS to you for nursing twins! I am proud to say I nursed mine for 16 months too! I know this isn’t much encouragement but can you tandem feed? When one of mine woke, I got the other up as well. I also learned to nurse laying down and my husband would put them back to bed when they were finished. I’m sorry I don’t have more advice for you but keep it up! I hope you get some rest!

  5. Hi – I was directed to your blog by a friend, and I had typed out a whole paragraph, but it disappeared. (one of the issues I have with WordPress as this keeps happening to me). Anyway, I did write about this recently, but it’s not exactly what I was writing to you personally. However, I hope you are getting some sleep now. If not, I can tell you what I did with my twins who are now 4.5 months and have been sleeping 12 hours for a month. I will say this: as long as they are warm, dry, and fed (and not ill with anything) they WILL sleep. It just might take you sleeping where you can’t hear them for a few days or a week. As soon as they figure out that you and your milk will be there for them in the morning, they’ll get it. In fact, they need to sleep longer too, not only for your sake, but for theirs. They have no weight issues and are happy and healthy, so you have been doing so well. Now it’s time to take care of you a little better. If you’ve done everything you can for them, then it’s time to let them cry it out. My girls wake up happy in the morning, even after 10 – 12 hours, and as soon as they are fed, it’s nothing but smiles. My husband actually told me to go sleep downstairs when he saw my exhaustion from being sick the first month after they were born. They slept with me that first month, but after they were technically ‘full term’ I started a schedule and it really didn’t take long. The one nice thing is they have each other, so they are never alone. Hang in there momma!

  6. Jen Says:

    Thank you so much for your comments and ideas Char, Amy, Dani, chipotleaddict, and littleoldfashionedme! The girls are doing better. In fact they had several nights of sleeping through the night before teething kicked in :). Then that passed and Anna got a fever… so far Ruth has avoided getting it somehow so I am thinking it might be connected to more teething. We shall see. Nights, however; are manageable now with just a few times up a night. Thanks again for all your help!

  7. Rudy Says:

    My younger sister has twin girls who are now 18 months. She nursed the girls for the first year. I am a missionary (with 5 kids of my own) living in Thailand. I am sure that she would love to share her experiences and helps with you regarding nursing your sweet girls. Please contact her @ beaniegirl33@hotmail.com
    Her name is Janet. Also, she has a cute blog that you might like to visit as well.

    http://theseventhyearthesecondyear.blogspot.com/

    Blessings to you and your family!

  8. Janet Says:

    Hi, my sister directed me to your blog. I have 17 month old twin girls, and this nursing pillow: http://www.doubleblessings.com/ really helped me a lot. If one baby would wake up in the night, I would usually wake up the other twin to nurse them both, change diapers, and put them back down. Over time, this created a routine for them to pretty much eat at the same time and sleep at the same time. It sounds like things are better now, so that is really good! Keep up the good work!


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