Sunday, April 08, 2007

This too, shall pass ...

For the first time, since Baby Vanessa was born, I shed my first tears as a mother.

Not because I was love struck (FYI I didn't cry when she was placed on my chest immediately after the C-section), but because I was in sheer agony. Again, not from the pain after the C-section (in fact, I was so sleepy and hungry - I was quite upset that I wasn't allowed to eat or drink until the next morning 9am! Milo had never tasted so delicious before!). Then what?

Compared to all the pre-birth agony (which seems like a distant memory now), compared to having to be under the knife for the birth, this seem like the worst ever thing that could happen to a mother.

It's the breast engorgement - the pain, totally UNBELIEVABLE. The right breast had started swelling on Thursday night, followed shortly by the left breast. I thought I could deal with it, just massage a bit and it wouldn't be so bad. Came Friday afternoon, I was in such agony - both seem to be ON FIRE (hot hot hot) and so painful to touch. By Friday evening, I had to ask the nursery staff for help - I couldn't deal with it anymore.

The nurse, Grace, helped to me to the hot towel massage - it was so painful I actually cried. Basically I cried and I cried and I CRIED. That's how bad it was. The only good news was, I only had another 24 hours to go before the pain subsided (usually last 48 hours). It also helped that Vanessa was in her good sucking day (we realise she sucks well only on alternate days) so while I had to deal with the sore nipples, I was more relieved that she was helping to reduce the engorgement. This combination is, hmm, how should I put it ... Grace helped to put Vanessa to the breast, while I grabbed on to the Hubby for pain/ stress relief, and tears still rolled down my face. Later that night, another nurse had to helped me again, to do a hot towel massage before feeding Vanessa. My breasts then slept with cold cabbage leaves (how glam can motherhood be?) that night. By Saturday morning, the pain is tolerable.

My breasts are still lumpy now, but much better - the pain is manageable, and the breasts aren't at that "going to explode any moment" size anymore. I'm going to get help by asking a therapist to help do a breast massage - hopefully she can make it tomorrow!

Sore nipples? Desensitized already. Now, the next hurdle, to make sure I have enough milk to still be on total breast feeding for 9 more days.


Meihua said...

Congrats to be able to breastfeeding!! I agree. It's no easy task. U intend to breastfeed for only 9 days more?

muminthemaking said...

no, what i mean is that I intend to breastfeed without using bottles to feed during the night. After 14 days, I can used the expressed milk to feed for night time, so won't be rushing to get all the pillows and hot towels ready in the middle of the night. Hopefully then the hubby will have better sleep!

actually i enjoy breastfeeding - it's the private time for me and my baby =)