Turtle is heading into her third year. I can’t even believe it. She has been a joy to parent, and my greatest teacher. I must say, I’ve probably grown right along with her. I have learned so much from being a parent, I’ve probably learned more this last two-plus years than I have in all of my 36 years of life.
You can read all the books, and do all this research and think you are going into it all ready, then they come. And they are so small, you are afraid you are going to break them. But one thing you are certain of is that you would do anything for them.
The other thing you learn is that its all about learning as you go. There is no class in the world that can prepare you for the realness of parenthood, and believe me, I know — I took the classes and went into this thinking I’d be okay.
I learned quickly that I was very fond of my sleep, but we had waited so long and gone through so much to get Turtle, that I didn’t care. I tried not to get too mad at my husband when he’d sleep through the nightly feedings and diaper changes. After all, I was the one with the boobs and the milk, what was he going to do, wake up just to watch me?
I also learned just how inpatient I can be. I was told by my lactation consultant, or my baby doctor, that I needed to be pumping my milk in addition to breastfeeding regularly. So, I started pumping and saw that on my breast pump I had numbers that went from one to five, five being the highest setting. I called the baby nurses and asked them if there would be any harm in pumping my milk on the highest setting. They said no.
So, in order to save time, I did. I cranked that puppy up to five and was done with that in no time. Well, after a few days, my milk started coming out with such force that if Turtle stopped suckling, it would squirt her right in the face, or if she turned her head, I could shoot milk across the room. Literally. I’m NOT kidding. I found it rather impressive. “Hey, look what I can do!”
I didn’t give it a second thought, just another of the oddities of is motherhood. Well, then Turtle started showing signs of acid reflux, and most of my clothes were ruined from the constant barrage of sudden baby spew-age that would erupt at any given time.
It was really stressful on me, because to see my child in such pain and to be told by the pediatrician that there was nothing wrong with her, and she would grow out of this “phase”, but he couldn’t tell me what this “phase” was.
I didn’t like that answer and I didn’t accept it — I feel that the medical field can be negligent sometimes and ended up being retroactive when they should have been pro-active.
So I used my skills as a researcher and trolled the internet and any literature I could get my hands on, trying to figure out what was wrong with my baby. Finally, when she was weeks shy of four months, I found a resource that EVERY new mother needs. It’s a website called kellymom.com.
It’s all about being a new mom, and it’s mostly dedicated to breastfeeding mothers. It was on this site that I was able to fix Turtle’s problem. Because of my need to pump at mach speeds, it made my milk come in too fast which shot the milk into Turtle’s mouth too fast and caused symptoms that mimic acid reflux. Once I stopped pumping, my flow slowed down and she stopped being uncomfortable.
I was, however, still able to maintain my ability to shoot milk across the room.