Well if you do, Granger will take some. This baby has given new meaning to the phrase ‘milk junkie.’ It started out with just a little harmless experimentation. You know, lots of babies try the powered stuff. I could live with that. Then he was having a little liquid gold offered to him by a friend, and then another friend, and another. Milk was coming at him from all sides. Before we knew it, he’d gotten milk from half the suppliers in our area. How did our five –month-old spin out of control so quickly?
Here’s what happened…
At Granger’s four-month well-baby check up, he was under weight and gave us a bit of a scare in terms of his growth rate. He was meeting milestones, developing beautifully and all around seeming to grow. Still we had a sneaking suspicion that he was slightly too small for his age; that concern was confirmed when by four months he’d gained less than five pounds (given his birth weight, he should have gained closer to seven pounds in this time frame). It was quickly determined that my breast milk supply was not providing enough volume to meet Grangers constantly growing needs. I was heartbroken that he had been going hungry for weeks or more without us knowing it. He’d been fussier than normal, and like I said, I was starting to think he was smaller than he should be; but he was sleeping great and so healthy in every other way that I never thought it could be a milk problem. I didn’t ever have this issue while breastfeeding Griffin.
So, we began to supplement and start working on boosting my milk supply. It was a trying couple of weeks. I had to nurse him as frequently as if he was a newborn again, and follow-up each feeding with a bottle for Granger and then a 30-minute pumping session with the ladies hooked up to a hospital grade pump. So basically, we’d spend more than an hour going through these motions, just to start doing it all over again. Then throw the Griffin Monsier into that mix. Enough said.
To take the edge off of my worry and stress about not wanting to end up switching to formula completely, a friend offered her frozen milk stores. Wow. It was something I felt strange about at first, but after talking about it with our ND, and Greg, it seemed like the right thing to do. I implicitly trust this friend, and knew her milk would be ‘clean’. Her baby girl was only 2 days older than Granger, so that was a plus as well.
My little milk junkie was hooked. After every bottle-feeding he would slip into that wonderful milk high, with a happy, glazed over look. If you’ve ever enjoyed a little of this or that, you know the feeling. He was finally getting what he needed. When we ran through that supply of milk and the stuff I had pumped, another amazingly generous friend brought over a special delivery of more liquid gold. At play dates, my nursing mamma friends would offer up their goods (via bottle, not breast), and Granger would get what he needed from me, and then some.
We have amazing friends. These girls just jumped right in and started helping feed my baby without a hesitation. They were pumping extra just so Granger could get as much breast milk as possible. Anyone who has pumped knows what a gesture that is. I have yet to meet a mamma that enjoys pumping. Our milk brigade knows who they are, and they know how grateful I am to them; even if they did turn my baby into a little junkie for the good stuff. Thanks to their sweetness, and my diligent pumping (if you want to know exactly how I feel about pumping, just read the ‘pump it up’ post from a couple years ago), Granger is back up on the growth charts where he needs to be, and he’s much more content. I think until Granger starts eating more solids, we’ll probably continue to have to closely monitor the milk supply and his weight gain, but we’re in a much better place than we were two months ago.