Goin’ Tubing.

Daphne slept all through the night. Not a peep from her between the hours of 11pm and 6am. Glorious.

Daphne woke up in a great mood. She was giggly and happy. I, on the other hand, woke up a little less than enthusiastic to greet the day.

Sam came home from his workout and showered while I got Daphs ready to go. We were out the door 10 minutes later.

I dropped off Sam at his work and grumpily trekked to the WIC office for my lactation consultant with Jocelyn.

On the drive, I passed by a new white Ford Explorer, which was the same type of vehicle as my father (who passed away almost a month ago). My heart wrenched.

I started thinking about all the things I was frustrated about and things that were bothering me. This made me tear up even more. I was so unstable. I could have been knocked over by someone just waving in my general direction.

I dried my tears and walked into the WIC office.

Daphs and I were called back by a short overly cheery woman with a taller quiet woman at her coattails.

Jocelyn was a very chipper woman, eager to help. She had a sidekick for the day, a nursing student from the University nearby. I happily agreed to have her sit in with us. It’s a great learning experience. Heck, if one person is gonna see my ta-tas, why not two? I guess I’d be a little less willing to show them off if they were made of gold or glowed in the dark.

I explained my situation to her with difficulty. I was still so scatterbrained and emotionally unstable from thinking about all the crap from this morning. I was surprised that it took me a few tries of correcting myself and avoiding staring off into space.

We weighed Daphs with her clothes on.

Jocelyn got right into it: She whipped out the SNS, the supplemental nutrition system. She explained how it worked and made sure I was comfortable with her handling my ta-tas.

The SNS is really quite smart. The idea is to provide supplemental milk through small tubes that are taped near the nipple. These tubes are thinner than angel hair pasta. When the baby latches, she will not only be receiving mother’s milk, but also the milk flowing from the small tubes. Ingenious.

I whipped those bad boys out and she explained how the system worked while setting it up on me. I handed her my pouch of breastmilk (precious stuff) and she commented on how careful she was not to spill any, as it is such a precious thing. Here is an actual clip of my reaction when I spill my breastmilk, even a drop.

So there we were, watching each other as she poured that precious stuff into the container. She then ran the tubing through it and screwed on the lid. She kept referring to the bottle as ‘the milk necklace.’ Made me laugh.

With the milk necklace firm around my neck, tubes hanging down, I was ready to finish initiation in getting tubed.

She showed me how to place the tubes on my chest and how to place the tube at my nipple. I was ready to go tubing.

I latched Daphs on and the milk necklace did its job! Daphs wasn’t fussy. She was getting immediate gratification of the milk she sucked through the tubing and what she got from me. Daphs did great!

Jocelyn helped me un-tape the tubes and remove the necklace after Daphs had drained it. We re-weighed Daphs. She took in a total of 4 ounces, 2 from the supplement and 2 from me. Awesome!!

She then discussed how Hope, my other breastfeeding counselor, would be contacting me for updates and to schedule an appointment with a dietitian next week for Daph’s weight gain.

I asked if we could do a naked weight of Daphne just for my record. We did, and Daphs weighed in at 10 pounds. T E N   Pounds. Either the scales are really screwy from the base clinic and the WIC office, or Daphne gained 8 ounces in 24 hours.

The nursing student asked me a few questions and I was happy to answer them.

Jocelyn then gave me some information and applauded all my hard work and efforts. I left feeling better.

Daphs and I headed back to base to pick up Sam for lunch.

I admit, I left feeling better but not fully convinced that this SNS would be the answer to my problems.

Sam and I enjoyed lunch and I dropped him back at the shop, ready to head home to try nursing Daphs again.

I nursed Daphs twice without the system. She nursed alright, better than usual, but still fussed. We hung out at the house for a few hours.

I then decided that I was tired of not doing anything about the things bothering me, so I squeezed myself into my workout clothes and headed back out the door with Daphs to go running on base before picking Sam up.

Daphs slept while I jogged (and walked) 3 1/4 miles. I really enjoyed being out in the warm weather, sun beaming down, cold wind blowing. I got off the trail just in time, as a lot of military men and women were getting on the trail to start running.

We picked up Sam and headed home.

I then had Sam help me get the SNS attached for my first feeding with it away from the WIC consultants.

Daphs took it all in like a champ. I was so excited that she didn’t fuss this time!

PRAISE the Lord for a quiet baby after nursing.

Daphs and I read a few Dr. Seuss books and made a segue into nursing again with the SNS.

She did so well again.

With a full tummy, her eyelids got very heavy. She drifted away into sleep and I was thrilled.

I would say the SNS is a success so far. Given, it’s only been a few times that I’ve used it, but it DEFINITELY will allow Daphne to get the extra ounces of nutrition she needs while still nursing from me.

I am hoping the SNS continues to prove a success for us at feeding times. Tomorrow we have no place to be. I anticipate using the system every other feeding.

On an unrelated note, I’d like to share an awesome product I found.

I’m a huge fan of smelly stuff–perfumes, body washes, new shampoos or body products. I had used up all the bottles of baby wash we had been given for Daphs a week or so ago. I bought this and fell in love with it. It smells amazing and it’s gentle for Daphne’s skin. I highly recommend it. I found it at Target.



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