You are Now Entering the 7th Circle of Hell
You know how they say "when it rains, it pours"? Well in our case it was coming down in bucketfuls last night! Today is a little bit better, and hopefully will continue to improve. But I need your thoughts and prayers right now to get through all of this craziness!
Here's what started it (possibly TMI but sorry):
I have posted some about the pain and suffering I have been experiencing for the past three weeks while trying to breastfeed. The weird thing is that starting by the end of our hospital stay up until these recent problems, I was completely shocked and happily surprised at how well breastfeeding was going and how much I enjoyed it. However, when I was experiencing massive amounts of pain every single feeding (6-7 times a day), it got to be a very frustrating and sad experience for me. I tried one round of antibiotics to no avail, an anti-fungal cream for thrush treatment which didn't work either, and then started a second round of a different antibiotic. Nothing was helping, there was no change, and sometimes it even felt worse. I believe the problem has something to do with a circulation issue I was having where my nipples were turning white on the ends (basically losing color and blood in the tips) which was causing the extreme pain. This is something I may run into again when we have a second child or it may be the way that Cooper was nursing as he got older. Needless to say, it was not something that could be treated except possibly with a circulation medicine which both myself and my family felt was not good for me to be having to take when I'm not having any heart/circulation problems. Because of the extreme pain I was in, I would seriously sit there STARING at the clock trying to will it to go by faster so I could at least allow him to nurse 10 minutes on each side. And as a result, Cooper was not getting as much milk as he wanted/needed at each feeding, and therefore becoming fussy from being hungry. It made me so sad to see him like that, and even more upset thinking about having to feed him yet again with the pain.
All that to say that by yesterday around noon, I just couldn't take it any more. The whole point to me of breastfeeding (besides the obvious nutrients which he hopefully got the majority of since I did nurse him for 7 weeks) is to have an emotional bonding experience with your child and provide to them. When that relationship is compromised where it is a painful and stressful experience for both me and the baby, I just don't think it is worth it any more. I know some of you may disagree with me or think I'm a horrible person because I had to stop, but it was the best decision for me and my son, and I am proud that I stuck through it as long as I did despite the pain and problems and glad that Cooper will now be getting enough milk and is a much happier boy able to sleep more often and for longer periods of time. I had wanted to breastfeed at least six months to possibly a year, but it just wasn't in the cards. Hopefully you all won't judge me, and I totally respect people that can continue it and will try again with our next one, but it just wasn't something I could justify continuing with Cooper when we were both suffering.
Little did I know that I apparently was making quite a lot of milk, and with the sudden stopping of having the milk taken out, by last night, my breasts were so sore I was in tears yet again. They were rock hard and so painful all the time with throbbing and aching pain shooting through. It was miserable. It was worse than any pain I suffered from the c-section because at least with the c-section pain, the medicine helped and as long as I stayed still in bed, I could get in a comfortable position to watch TV or sleep or just relax. With this, I couldn't get comfortable AT ALL, and as a result, I slept a total of one hour last night. I have since taken about three hours in naps today and plan to get a good night sleep tonight because I am feeling a little better. I talked to my doctor's nurse today about it, and she recommended 4-5 days with the following wrapped around me 24-7: green cabbage leaf (there is something in cabbage that helps with engorgement and drying up milk if left on for a long time), sports bra, ace bandage, second sports bra. Since doing this around lunchtime today, I have managed to alleviate some of the pain, and I can function now at least. It was so hard because I couldn't hold Cooper near me or burp him or rock him, but I have managed today to find ways to accomplish all of this, and I know things will get better from here with that.
If you thought that was all, I am not done unfortunately! In addition to the chaos that was me last night, Austin started with a stomach ache after dinner. He was trying hard to help me, but didn't feel well at all. It was a terrible situation because I was so worthless because of my pain and inability to hold Cooper against me, and he was sick. Of course at about midnight or so as we were trying to fall asleep, Austin got sick to his stomach. It happened again an hour later, and through tears of desperation, I got up and went into the family room to try to rest on the futon so that I could try to avoid the germs. Apparently there is a stomach bug going around here - Austin's brother had it Saturday night and we have purposely been avoiding his family since then so as not to be exposed to the germs. Of course, it had to bite us in the butt because two people in Austin's work had the stomach bug too so he must have picked it up from them on Monday (one of the most frustrating things about where he works is that it is a lot of men that work there and men typically do not go to the doctor when they should and come to work sick even when they shouldn't only to pass it along to others especially Austin because of his weakened immune system due to his diabetes but that's another story).
So far (knock on wood), I am feeling okay other than the boob pain! But I am just hoping and praying that I will not get sick, not for purely selfish reasons but because I have no idea who would take care of Cooper then because Austin's parents who usually babysit for us have also been exposed to it (although neither of them have got it so I'm hoping I will be so lucky) and also are leaving on Friday morning for their anniversary trip to Santa Fe. Above that, I am hoping and praying that Cooper does not pick it up because he is so little, and it would be so hard on him. I'm hoping we dodge the bullet on this one, but we'll see! Austin had a low fever this morning, but luckily did not get sick again since 1:30 last night so that's a good thing. I picked up a prescription for him today and he seems to be feeling better although the medicine makes him tired. But it's good so that he can just get rest and hopefully fight off the bugs in his system. I have been washing my hands like crazy and spraying Lysol and Clorox Anywhere all around the house so I'm hoping that will help.
Tonight I am going to sleep in our guest bedroom so I can hopefully get a good night's sleep and avoid germs. The doctor told Austin to rest for two days so he'll be home from work again tomorrow (grr, and he gets NO sick days so his paycheck next time will be lower), but hopefully he can go back to work on Friday and as good as he was doing today for being sick just last night, he can hopefully function more tomorrow. It's just lonely for me because I'm used to him coming home and spending time with Cooper and me in the evenings, but I don't want to expose either of us to any more germs than necessary so I have pretty much left him be in the bedroom all day other than to bring him drinks occasionally and medicine.
Sorry for the long post! I told you I was lonely! LOL Hope you all had a better evening and day than me, and here's to hoping things get BETTER instead of worse. At least there is a new Lost on tonight to keep me company! :)