February 12, 2016

The Truth About Breastfeeding, Part 2: Reflux and Life Changes

Breastfeeding a newborn can be challenging, annoying, frustrating, exhausting but oh so rewarding. The many many middle of the night feedings that your significant other can't help with can drive you crazy. The sore cracked nipples doesn't help or the third time you leaked your nursing tank that morning.

Guest poster Laurie is back with the second part of this series. If you missed the first installment, The Journey Begins, you can read it here.



After I was home and getting settled in with a new baby added to the mix breastfeeding for me came easy. Granted I was always tired from the middle of the night feedings my husband couldn't help with but it was rewarding. It also meant no bottles to clean or formula to mix and less to worry about remembering to pack in the diaper bag.


At the time I was planning to return to work when H was just shy of 8-weeks old, so once my breast pump arrived it was time to stockpile. I was lucky and received a pump through my insurance at no cost. It was exhausting to nurse on demand all day long then pump right before I went to bed and as soon as I woke up. H initially slept through the night for about a month but those days are long gone.

While prepping a stash to return to work we introduced a bottle. I loved the Playtex Ventaire ones with J so decided to use them again with H. She took it easily and would go back to nursing no issue. Due to my fear of her preferring the bottle to breast we only did it a couple times a week. One day my sister-in-law watched H for a few hours and had no issue taking a bottle.

When H was at that nearly 8-week-old mark of me returning to work something happened. I had it all arranged my husband, C, was going to drop off J and H with his sister before he went to work since I went in so early. Got up really early pumped, nursed H got her back to sleep and headed off to work. I arrived only to be told, "Oh, you were laid off back in July with all the other contracted employees." Gee, thanks for telling me this months ago! I lost composure and started crying it was too much between leaving H for the first long time. Turns out it was the agency I was employed through who never bothered to notify me -- never working with them again.


Later that month, we discovered H had reflux. It was horrible hearing her cry from the pain. When it started I had no clue what was going on. Just after her 2-month appointment H began cluster feeding for 2 days straight driving me crazy. She had always spit up but I thought she was one of those "happy spitters" but now the amount was increasing. I was wondering if it was my fault like if my supply tanked and never realized it. H went to the doctor to find out what was going on. Since the spit up was causing her pain she was prescribed Zantac and a week later a dose of Prevacid was added due to continued pain. I felt horrible for her but at least my supply was still there and could continue my breastfeeding journey. Sometimes babies with reflux can't be breastfed and have to go on special broken-down formulas.

After that was taken care of a new hurdle to try to overcome was about to hit us. I wasn't working now so we stopped regularly giving H a bottle and only nursed. It created the Baby Monster giving mama no break.

Part 3: Separation Anxiety and Adding Solids (Coming Feb. 22)

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About the Author
Laurie is a stay-at-home mom to two little girls -- a baby and a 5-year-old -- and is stepmom to a 5-year-old daughter. Living in New England, she has a big Australian Sheepdog along with the kids and her husband. She enjoys music, decorating cakes and Doctor Who.

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20 comments:

  1. I never had a baby with reflux but that sounds so hard! We had other challenges but I think everyone gets their own set of things they have to deal with when having babies. Great post!

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    1. We're glad you like the post! I agree, there are always challenges with having a baby, it's just a matter of what it is for each of us. Having kids isn't easy, that's for sure. :)

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  2. What a rough period! Not knowing about the layoff, leaving for the first time, reflux! I can only imagine.

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  3. Just the mention of reflux sends chills down me. My oldest was diagnosed with that/gerd it was terrible. I felt awful for her, add in a tongue tie and nursing did not go the way we wanted at all. I ended up pumping and bottle feeding. My milk supply tanked. It just was not a good experience. I wish more talked about the hard experiences with nursing.

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  4. I formula fed, so I didn't know about any of this.

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  5. It can be difficult breastfeeding and coming from someone that suffers with reflux herself it is extremely painful and uncomfortable.

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  6. I did not breastfeed for too long - had many challenges so have no experience with this. I sympathize with those who do.

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  7. Sounds like a tuff time. Hate that you got laid off after being strong enough to leave your baby.

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  8. Looks like you went through a rough time. You are very brave for speaking about it

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  9. Elizabeth O.2/17/2016 8:56 PM

    I feel lucky that I never dealt with reflux when the twins were younger. Otherwise, I wouldn't have known what to do. I'm sorry you had to go through that plus the fact that your company wasn't decent enough to tell you that you were laid off.

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  10. I didn't know about this because We choose to formula fed our baby due to some reason. And it sounds that you went through a rough time.

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  11. This is an eye opener. I'm a guy but surely if my wife will have troubles doing breastfeeding. I'll surely help her in chores in life.

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  12. Until now my son was 1 year old and he still breastfeeding. I'm so glad that he didn't have reflux, You are so brave to share this with us

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  13. My journey into breastfeeding was also short lived Claudette...LOL... Apparently I was not producing enough milk so to prevent starvation I had to go to formula early.

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  14. Wow that was trying times for the mom, reflux is no joke!

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  15. One of my babies had acid reflux and I ended up bottle feeding. I had a lot better success with my other two.

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  16. Seems like a really hard time in your life i hope everything turns for and better days are ahead of you

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  17. Im not a mommy yet but I have hear that breastfeeding is not as easy as it looks. Thanks for raising awareness about this so people dont feel guilty if this happen to them (or eventually me)

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  18. I didn't even know babies could get reflux. I imagine it would be so awful to work through for the sweet little ones. :(

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  19. What a tough time. I only breastfed my kids for a couple of months and I did not encounter this issue.

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Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. As a busy mom, I'm not always able to respond to each one, though I read and appreciate them all.