It’s 10:37 a.m. and I already have a bout of that pesky mom guilt. Erik woke me up and told me he was going to run to the store to get dog food and coffee creamer. “The girls are fine, they already ate, so try to keep sleeping,” he said. I bet he wasn’t even to the stop sign at the end of our street before they were fussing. I walk out in the living room to see them both in their swings. Olivia about knocked the bucket seat of her’s to the floor from flailing her arms and legs once she noticed me, and although Violet didn’t get as excited, I got a happy reaction from her, too. I walked in to the kitchen where the Keurig is just out of their eyesight, and before you know it, they’re both crying. I rolled my eyes and took a deep breath.
A little over a month ago, Violet started refusing the breast little by little, to the point where she wasn’t gaining or losing any weight. We hired an IBCLC to come out to our house and do an evaluation on her. She diagnosed a lip and tongue tie, but said that it didn’t affect her latch any, and gave us a feeding plan to follow. She told us that if we had a referral to an E.N.T. we could get the ties revised, but for now, bottle feed her and focus on continuing to try to get her to latch. This morning, I wanted to pump because I had slept from 4:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. and knew that I had enough milk in there for her lunch bottle. Once I start interacting with the girls, it’s go, go, go until their mid-morning nap.
I figured I would pump for a few minutes rather than twenty, get enough milk out for the bottle, and then nurse Olivia and maybe Violet if I was lucky. I did just that, and as Olivia fell asleep nursing, a wave of Oxytocin rushed over me. I was able to unlatch her once I realized she was comfort suckling and no longer swallowing, and laid her down peacefully in her crib. I took Violet, who was now crying, out of the playpen and sat down with her in the rocking chair in the nursery. I attempted to latch her, and sure enough, she took right to it and started nursing herself to sleep, too.
Once she was fully asleep in her crib, I came to the kitchen table to type this, thinking about how all they wanted was my attention (and milk… let’s be honest here) and how all I wanted was to drink a hot cup of coffee while I pumped milk so Violet had one less bottle of Neosure today since I am working tonight. As a mother, one of the hardest things for me is making sure that both of them get equal, or close to equal time with me, while still providing structure through the day by making sure they eat enough, play enough, and nap enough. The absolute hardest thing, though? Remembering that they are only this little once, and to embrace these moments whether they are happy memories, or mistakes to learn from, and to remind ourselves that although we may feel guilty because we could have done x,y, or z better, they don’t care as long as we love them.