Engorgio!

Here we are one week later, and so far I have managed to avoid getting engorged. Yay!! I would do a happy dance if I wasn’t so darn tired. Now there have been some very full moments, but nothing like the extreme pain and discomfort I suffered with my second daughter.

So what’s different this time around? I have a few theories as to why things are running more smoothly with DD#3.

1. Correct Allignment: With DD#2 I forgot that you have line the newborn baby’s body with her belly against yours (at least in cradle and cross-cradle positions) in order for her to latch on correctly. For if they do not latch on correctly then your nipples start to crack and hurt really bad, really quickly. This makes one hesitant to nurse regularly or even at all.

2. Positiong, Positioning, Positioning: Even though I lined up DD#3 correctly, I did start getting a really sore spot on my left side. So that’s when I started using the football/clutch position on that side. It’s not the most comfortable on my back and wrist, but it certainly helped keep that side from getting any worse so it could heal. Sometimes I go ahead and use football/clutch position on the right side to just to drain it differently. I’ve also been doing some side-by-side position, especially at night.

3. Making Nursing the #1 Priority: With my second daughter I think I tried to do too much too soon. I would get busy cleaning up something or trying to make my first born feel like she was still special and put off nursing. It is so important, though, to keep draining your breasts before they get over-full. Otherwise you find yourself soaking your breasts in a hot bath tub at two in the morning in hopes of expelling enough milk and lessening your swelling so that your baby can actually latch on. So this time around the house is just going to hell, and thankfully my older girls have each other to play with.

4. Drainage: Often at night I will go ahead and open my nursing bra on whichever side I am sleeping on, stick a cheap cloth diaper under that breast, and let gravity relieve some of the pressure. Sometimes I have also been letting one side leak into a cloth diaper while the baby nurses on the other. They both want to let down milk, anyway, so I may as well let them drain as much as possible. It keeps everything much more comfortable.

No one could ever accuse me of having milk production issues. I tend to produce a ton and it tends to have a very high fat content; I call it high-octane. My babies start out small (this latest one being my biggest at 6 lbs and 14 oz) and fatten up really fast. This new baby does not seem to be an exception. She’s probably put on close to a pound in her first week and is right on the cusp of moving up to size 1 disposable diapers.

I am just glad that I don’t look like Hagrid misused an engorgio charm on my chest. Although since my belly has gone down, I probably could pass for a Playboy model…if it wasn’t for all those pregnancy skin tags and that very unsexy baby that is constantly attached to one of my completely real breasts. Oh, and my skin isn’t so tanned that I look orange. And my teeth aren’t whitened to the point of glowing in the dark. Ok, so maybe I couldn’t pass for a Playboy model…maybe an early model Barbie doll instead.

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