Had a rather hair-raising first day back at work this week. Just as I was happily out of the office and making my way to nice Thai food at Boat Quay (can’t remember the restaurant name), I received a distress call. From mum. With baby wailing in the background.
Mum: “He doesn’t want to drink milk!”
Me: (Frazzled because I knew this was way past baby’s first feed time, and sharing his hunger pains. But tried to process the information as rationally as I could, in a matter of seconds.) “Have you tried spooning? Or using a small cup?”
Mum: “Ok ok, I try.”
That seriously took my mind off food for the rest of the trot to Boat Quay (and the rest of the arvo for that matter). I was frantically searching my mental archives for further solutions if those failed. Once seated at the Thai place, I called home to check. Whew, mum managed to get baby J to drink about half of the feed. I advised her to try again later, when his mood has recovered.
In the evening, I rushed home, and was greeted by the teary baby whom my mum had resorted to carrying and walking around the corridor outside our house. He apparently had taken a little from the bottle, but was by now cranky-hungry. (As a woman, I know what cranky-hungry feels like. Totally empathised with my poor bub.)
Thankfully we’ve managed to find ways to get him to drink from the bottle. But he seems to have gone on a mini hunger strike – taking roughly half of his usual feed. This is formally known as reverse cycling (where baby nurses more at night to make up for missed nursing sessions in the day). Which is also why my eye rings are getting deeper and darker.
Still, I can’t help but berate myself and asking why I failed to prepare for such a situation? I thought I knew everything there is to know about going back to work, including how much milk baby will need, and how to handle and store breastmilk. Apparently, I was wrong. Looks like however prepared I try to be, something never fails to knock my well-crafted plans out-of-whack.
I’m totally game to continue breastfeeding my baby – with the zillion good things that it does for baby (and me), why give up?…but I’m starting to think that I may not be able to cope long-term with working 8-5 whilst having to wake twice / thrice at night.
If you’re a working, breastfeeding mummy, would certainly love to hear about how you cope. Do leave a comment / email me, if you have any tips to share.