Saturday, February 26, 2011

Stuff That Works For Me - Playtex Drop-Ins

Like many moms-to-be, I had a laundry list of idealistic notions of how I would do things once the baby arrived. Front and center was the issue of breastfeeding. I was certain that I wanted to breastfeed.

Sure, I'd heard about the difficulties involved, but I thought, I'm stubborn. I will persist, and we will emerge victorious. After all, that's the natural way, right? Where would mankind be if breastfeeding failed over the centuries on a large scale?

I wasn't breastfed, but my sister was. So there was that. My baby would be healthier and happier and bond better with me if I breastfed him, so who gives a shit about sore nipples? And that's really what I thought the worst scenario would be actually, sore nipples. Ha!

As usual, reality came and bit me in the butt.

Sam was born 3 1/2 weeks early, and he was perfectly healthy, but a heel-stick glucose test at birth revealed he was hypoglycemic, and medicine being what it is in this litigious state, in these litigious times, he bought himself a stay in the NICU.
(I'm sure husband being a physician played into the overkill as well.)

In the NICU he was bottle-fed, and he thrived. I was simultaneously pumping, but it took a few days for the milk to come in, and then he was having problems latching. So we went home with a breast pump and lots of formula, thinking we'd do the best we could and see where it got us.

Looking back, I know 2 things. One, I was a nervous first-time mom of a preemie, which combined with the rigid NICU scheduling that had been ingrained in out heads (my husband, as we were leaving the NICU, actually thought we had to take his temp each time we changed his diaper! Um, no) made for little left to chance with his scheduled feeding times and amounts. Time spent at the breast was far too nebulous. Latching was far too erratic. So I pumped! Literally around the clock. And we made it work, and got no sleep. But it was fine! It was ok! I was so revved up, so wrapped up in making sure everything was as it should be, that sleeping and eating were secondary. It went on like this for a couple of months! Everyone told me I was crazy, that I should just switch to formula. I tried to - but couldn't pull myself away from the pump.

Until the point where I was not producing enough milk for his growing appetite. Which leads me to the second thing: I learned at 9 weeks post partum that I had retained products of conception, and while it thankfully did not hurt me, I'm willing to believe it interfered with milk production. Right after that the pump went back to the hospital, and we embarked on the equally scary decision of: which formula? There are only about a thousand different kinds out there. How hard could it be?

Yada yada yada...tried regular milk-based formula which irritated his digestive tract. Landed in a patch of soy.

But that's not the point of this post, actually. I want to talk about how much I love Playtex Drop-Ins.
You buy the bottle shells and the nipples, and the liners are disposable. What's better than that?

I tried many other bottles before going with these. Maybe it's just what my baby took to, but they were and are a dream for us to use.
(Just yesterday he started eating solid food - maybe a little nostalgia is behind this right now! It happens so quickly!)


Lauren said...

Breastfeeding is crazy. I'm lucky that a mild latch issue (gibson was slightly tongue tied) was the biggest thing I had to overcome.

I use Dr Browns bottles, but we rarely bottle feed. I personally never gave the boy a bottle till about a month ago. And it dawned on me I had no idea how to put the Dr Browns bottle together (there's straws and bits and bobs). Now I keep a bottle with water in it in the fridge and give it to him after mum mum rice crackers (i am convinced they would make him thirsty) and i let him chomp on the cold nipple when he's teething and cranky. He also seems to enjoy playing with it.

Steph said...

Breastfeeding would have been awesome if it had worked out!
I think my 2 big issues were the retained products of conception and the fact that Sam started life being fed from bottles. He never got used to the slower flow of the breast.
I also tried Dr. Brown's bottles. I think at that time it was more an issue of what was in the bottle than the bottle itself, but we kept changing everything.
They do look intimidating!

I was really surprised at how much guilt I had over not being able to make exclusive breastfeeding work, and then dropping it altogether.

Got to get some of those crackers! How funny that you are convinced they make him thirsty. We bring so much of our own to the situation.