Monday, September 20, 2010

Nursing and Food Allergies

I've been wanting to share about our nursing experience thus far....

Anna was my first little nurser and she was sooo easy.... of course, I was a new mom, a new nurser and not sure how everything worked! I had the soreness as my chest got used to nursing a babe and a little engorgement, but no big problems besides Anna's constant and HUGE "spit ups". Her spitting up was actually reactions to dairy coming through the breastmilk.

Chris was a horrible nurser.... we had latching on problems, more food allergies, he never really sat long enough or was even interested in nursing. After visiting with lactation consultants at the hospital, we finally got him sort of straight and we nursed until my pregnancy with Lydia affected my milk supply... poor little Chris:(

Lydia was another great nurser like Anna. She would take forever to eat... but she did a great job nursing and if you've seen pics of her as an infant, she was well fed:) LOL!!

Thank goodness, Nate has also been a great nurser!! The first weeks my goal was to nurse, nurse, nurse!!! And Nate hasn't stopped!!! I seriously never got engorged with him. I have felt "full" only a handful of times because my little guy eats around the clock!!

Nursing Nate has also been unique because he eats soo quickly!! He takes less than 10 minutes to feed at each nursing session! He's just super efficient!

While nursing Nate has been "easy"... there are always challenges... and ours is food allergies!!! Because Anna, Chris and Lydia all have food allergies, I've again decided to eliminate our problem foods from MY diet (directions given to me by our allergist when our other children were diagnosed!).

An obviously PLUS is that I loose the baby weight FAST... I'm just a few pounds from my whoo-hooo target weight!! But honestly, while it's nice to have the preggo pounds gone, I'd MUCH RATHER keep some of them if it meant my kids didn't have food allergies!!!!

Another CON is that I really have to think about what I NEED to eat. Since dairy, eggs and peanuts are all sources of calcium, fat and/or protein, I have to be sure to eat other foods that fill in the gaps that are left in my diet. I think my lack of energy and Nate's not sleeping through the night might have something to do with my diet... so I'm in the process (constantly) of examining my diet and trying to get in what Nate and I need!!

Another CON is that during these "short" nursing months I have to watch EVERYTHING I eat. I was reminded this week.... I ate a chicken sandwich at McD's ... no cheese... but I don't let the kids eat them because one of the many ingredients is dried milk. Well the next afternoon, Brian was feeling sick and Nate was SOOO fussy. Brian finally remembered eating the chicken sandwich with me and then Nate had a huge spit up.....


Which leads to another PRO which is that through nursing we have been able to predict what allergies each child has had based on what they were sensitive to! This is really nice because the kids don't actually have to consume the "problem" food themselves and we know which foods to test at the allergists.


Totally eliminating




is a lot easier said than DONE!! It's a constant battle of my self-control... not eating what I really want to eat... pizza, ice cream or a Snickers bar!!! Oh, man writing that was torture!!!

but it reminds me of two things:

1. food is "just food", needed to fuel our bodies!

2. The constant sacrifices of parenthood, and in my case, motherhood!!! We carry this baby which can be soo hard on our bodies, we go through labor, then we sacrifice daily for our sweet babes!!! I happen to sacrifice some of my favorite foods for this short season!

But the sacrifices don't end after nursing... LOL!! They don't even end when the kiddos go to college!!!! I know of a sweet local mother who has been with her adult daughter since July because of complications from surgery... this mother has sacrificed soo much to care for her!

Just a reminder to me of the sweet and demanding call of "motherhood" !! May I be found faithful to this amazing calling by God!


Drea said...

WHOAAA LOOK AT HER CHUNK LOL, Lydia was a chunky lil one hehe, so cute!!! Its funny how Nate has slimmed down so much yet came out just like that. I bet he will chunk up more tho :)

I think its amazing you can do all that and stay sane :) I dont think I could.. although I guess if I had to I could.. cause I do watch my diet pretty strictly... and Im a picky eater so Im sure I could figure it out ... but it take a really incredible devotion to do what you are doing.

Im still amazed at how fast Nate eats... when lil Owen over here takes an hour sometimes to drink a bottle that normally takes babies 5 - 10 minutes :) Hes just a slow eater like Lydia, hmmm must be the 3rd baby thing again.

Anonymous said...

This is a great post. Thanks for sharing. Do the doctors think they will outgrow their allergies? You are one great mama to sacrifice all of that. Now I want a snickers bar. Ha ha!

Jenilee said...

I love this post! good for you and yes, may I be found faithful with this season of life called motherhood! amen!

Jenny said...

Great post. That would be difficult to give up your favorite foods. I'm glad you are able to figure out their allergies and adjust your diet accordingly.

Carrie said...

It is so great to hear your story. I am a SHHM of four also. I am in the process of trying to go dairy free (doing all of the research right now and feeling a little overwhelmed). I have had one on Almond milk since discovering her intolerance to dairy but the others have been on milk. I fear that dairy maybe effecting my oldest with some ADHD like behaviors. I hoping this switch will offer him some relief. I already have grumbles as I try to prepare them for what is coming (including my husband). Oh what we do for our kids!!!! Thanks for sharing your story it encourages me. I love all of the recipes.