My baby is on strike! I’ve read about nursing/breastfeeding strikes; I even have a couple of friends who have experienced this first hand; But when you go through it yourself, it’s a totally different story!
I didn’t realize Nyakio was on “strike” until I came home one day and she literally refused to breastfeed. She would turn her head away from my boob and shut her little mouth so tight it was hilarious. Quite comical to watch actually. I thought she was full…until I offered her a bottle and she grabbed it with all her might. I can tell you, that first experience of “rejection” was very depressing. It was a loud and clear, “Mummy, I’m on a boob strike!”
This experience has been doubly strange especially because my first baby, Tumi, had no such problem. In fact my boob was Tumi’s best friend up until she was two years old. Not so much the case with my darling Nyakio!
I’ve tried to understand the genesis of this problem, and I have managed to trace it to two contributing factors. One, that I’m back to my usual hectic schedule, hence have less time to breastfeed during the day; and two, that my milk production has greatly reduced ever since I started working out.
So this has been going on for a couple of days now and I’m faced with two choices: Either accept that she has rejected the boob and forget about breastfeeding or try to re-establish lactation as best as I can before I hang up my breastfeeding bra
So I’m going for option two… and I can tell you I know this will by no means be a smooth ride! But for the next 21 days, I’m gonna give it my utmost best shot, and after consultation and research, these are the measures I’m gonna take:
When she’s ready for a feed, I will literally force myself on her. I’ll try any breast feeding position…lying down, sitting up, sometimes even walking around for as much as possible. Only when I’m absolutely tired of trying will I prepare a bottle for her.
If I’m away from her at her feeding times, I will do my best to find a private hygienic place to express breast milk. Expressing, as I’m sure you’re aware, encourages the body to produce milk.
I will have to hang up my gym shoes for a while – I have actually already started – until my 21 days of “forcing myself on my child” are over. This is because weight loss can interfere with milk production (as has already unfortunately happened).
I’m back to doing what I used to when she was exclusively on breast milk… drinking all sorts of herbs and teas that encourage milk production, as well as keeping up with drinking at least 4 litres of water each day.
Let’s see how this goes! With any luck, Nyakio and I shall re-establish that wonderful mommy-baby bonding time. If not, I’ll have given it a gospel shot!!!