The One Where I Worry About Breastfeeding

With just under 6 weeks to go until my due date, and with the Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt going on, I thought it appropriate that I write a post about breastfeeding.

Just for the sake of clarity, I will start by saying (as I say a lot) I am NOT anti formula, I am PRO breastfeeding.

There is a difference.

Although, I think, even in this day and age, you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. So I think everyone should just make the decision that’s right for them and not be judged for it. Breast or bottle, you should be supported whatever your choice.

I never made a conscious decision about breastfeeding, it was just something I knew I wanted to do,and Neil was on board. It was never a question.

I managed to feed Jake exclusively for 4 months, then combine fed until he was 7 months, when unfortunately, through no choice of my own, I had to stop completely.

With Zack, I thought I was doing OK but his weight said otherwise, and we were admitted to hospital for 24 hours, and I was pretty much forced into combined feeding. I felt like there was no support for me breastfeeding and I had to fight to have help.

After doing a bit, and I really do mean a bit, I haven’t spent hours trawling the internet or anything, but I wonder whether my thyroid has anything to do with my inability to produce enough milk for Zack. I’ve spoken to a few other mums that have thyroid issues that struggled to feed, and it just seems like too much of a coincidence, but the consultant says otherwise.

We live in another city now, and the midwife speaks very highly of the support available for breastfeeding. They have support workers that will actually come out to your house. I am wondering whether to buy a new breastpump to see if that will help too.

So yes, I am worried, but I know that some is better than none, so I will try not to beat myself up too much if I struggle again this time, but I won’t be scared to ask for help and support if I need it, and I will fight to feed for as long as I can.

The One With the Growth Scan

Now that I am in the last trimester, the appointments are being stepped up a notch. I had my GTT at 28 weeks, and thankfully, if not unsurprisingly the results were fine. I’ve had to have one in all my pregnancies due to the fact my mum has Type II Diabetes. It’s a simple enough test to do, just very boring as it involves lots of sitting around on uncomfortable chairs.

I have really been struggling the last few weeks. The tiredness has reached a whole new level, and I found myself needing a quick power nap even after a task as simple as doing the school run. Not really ideal as I still have Zack to look after. I wasn’t sure if it was just third tri lethargy or if my thyroxine dose needed increasing. Luckily I had an appointment with my consultant and for a growth scan last week.

With Jake, I didn’t need growth scans as I was “healthy” and had no medical ailments. Then with Zack, because I’d had my thyroid removed, I had growth scans every four weeks from 20 weeks. This time I’m only having two growth scans, one at 30, and one at 36 weeks. I’m not sure if this is because everything was fine with Zack, or if it’s because I’m at a different hospital with a different consultant, either way, less is more as far as I’m concerned because I’m planning on a homebirth this time.

Neil couldn’t come with me to the hospital last week as he’s manic at work, so my mother-in-law came with me as moral support. I’m sure I would have been fine on my own, but I always like someone with me to talk things over with afterwards.

First up was the scan. They had to check the placenta this time around as as the last scan it was low lying. Thankfully this time, the placenta had moved out of the way, which I was really pleased about, as I don’t want anything to stand in the way of the home birth.

We had a 4D scan at 27 weeks and that showed that baby was head down. Now, baby is lying oblique. I’m not too worried about this just yet, I have another scan at 36 weeks, and am fairly certain s/he will have moved again by then, but just in case, I’ve had a look at Spinning Babies to find some exercises that might help.

As regards growth. Well, baby is bang on target, and estimated weight is currently 1627g (approx 3lb 9oz) and is measuring just below the 50th centile. Although, I know growth scans are to be taken with a pinch of salt. According to previous growth scans, Zack was going to be 9lb + whereas in reality, he was 7lb 4oz!

growth chart growth scan

Then it was through to the consultant. Blood pressure etc was all fine. I explained how tired I had been feeling, so they repeated my thyroid function blood test. I assumed that I would need my dose increasing, so agreed to call my GP in a few days for the results. I didn’t get that far as the consultant called me on Friday and said that she’d looked at my results and thought I was taking too much so has in fact reduced my dose. After a quick nose on Dr Google, I found that the symptoms of too much thyroxine are very similar to the symptoms of not enough, so I’m hoping to start feeling better in the next week or so.

I have a midwife appointment this week, then won’t be seen until 34 weeks, at which point I will be on fortnightly checks.

It’s all starting to get a bit real!