On Sleep and Stomachs

Posted by on Feb 29, 2012 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Greer will be three weeks old tomorrow. She is adjusting to this big bright world just as she should. Her infancy is reminding me so much of Gideon’s. First, they look very similar – my skin tone, blue eyes, Poppy’s hairline, long bodies with skinny appendages. Her chin is slightly different, more feminine and girly and her smiles reveal a dimple in her cheek – my first baby with one! She has long skinny feet with the same toenails as her brother. Second, they both love to sleep upright on someone’s chest. Gideon ONLY slept that way for six weeks and I am assuming that’s how long it will take this little girl to let go of being upright too. Third, they love feats of strength. She has decidedly non-2-week-old neck strength and control, just like her big brother did. If you put her in a pack and play or crib or on any other solid surface on her tummy, she will scoot and spin around in an uncoordinated, cheek rubbing experiment of mobility. It’s adorable and scary all at the same time. There’s probably more, but I forget now.

However, she is all her own person in this whole needing help to burp and sometimes spitting up thing. The other two were normally gassy babies, don’t get me wrong. They had those moments when I started to question what I’d eaten or how good their latch was for that last feeding, but they very rarely spit up. To be clear, she is not horking milk all over me, just tiny little dribble amounts, but I’m always caught off guard (my fellow slow learners, please raise your hands). And she needs SO MANY back pats to get those burps up. Her face contorts in pain and annoyance while I try to help her work it out. It’s not just the burping either. She’s a lady so I won’t say the name of the other kind of gas she has, but I think you might have an idea about it. She makes the same sad little faces with that but she adds little screams to the experience. Nothing makes a Mama feel sadder than her less one month old yelping in pain.

I’m pretty sure that the gas is caused by the ridiculous amounts of milk I’m sending her way. Affectionately known as hyper-lactation syndrome, I have a very abundant milk supply, so I produce copious amount of foremilk (higher in water content, higher in lactose and usually delivered with greater force during letdown – the gas triumvirate!). All of that foremilk alone could be making her stomach cramp, or it could be from all the gulping she’s doing. Upon this realization, I’ve started keeping her on one side longer and will start pumping right before I feed her to take the edge off. She for sure hasn’t been getting enough hind milk because she wants to eat constantly. We’ll change up our routine and see if it delivers positive results.

It’s the normal way for two week old babies to be awake more and to be more gassy, so I’m taking the whole thing with boulders of salt and thanking God we live close to my parents who have been a gigantic help to me while Jud has been out of town on business. They’ve helped make meals, magically made the gassy girl sleep for long stretches and entertained the older two while I nurse the tiny one. I’m sure I could do it without them but I’m so glad that I don’t have to.

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