Sigh.

These every-three-hour feedings never stop. I mean, duh, but the time between them feels so fleeting. And I feel chained to this stupid pump. I’m so tired of doing that all the time. I’m trying to multitask, but there are always so many things I want to do at the same time (like eat or go to the bathroom). I’m already antsy to be done with it altogether, but I want to delay full-time formula for as long as possible, mostly for financial reasons. These babies already go through so many diapers, it’s crazy (about 20 a day). So to have that expense plus formula every month…I would feel so guilty. But I’m already afraid to stop pumping or even reduce it, for money reasons but also because I don’t know what will happen to my supply. God, and they’re only going to eat more and more at each feeding. So far I’m keeping up, but who knows how long that will last. If I have to keep pumping at every feeding (I’m already skipping one overnight one to sleep), I’m going to go stir-crazy. But that’s so selfish and small-minded. So I keep telling myself to suck it up and just do it already. But I whine about it every time, either out loud or in my head.

The other day I hit the wall of tired–I can’t seem to feel rested. Even though I’m getting 5-6 hour stretches of sleep, thanks to our overnight shared feeding schedule. And I shouldn’t be complaining really, since our babies aren’t screaming all the time like I know some do. But they do get seriously grunty, so there isn’t a lot of long periods of actual quiet. Again, if I were someone else, I would kick me for saying anything at all.

I have all these keepsake-type projects I want to do. There’s Project Life, which is a long-term thing, but I also want to take handprints and footprints. In several different formats. There are two long-term series I want to do as well. Not to mention some more photos I want. I’m really unsatisfied with the photos I’ve been able to take so far–they aren’t up to par with what I would like. But taking the kind of posed photos I want and doing these projects all mean that I need cooperation from Andy, and the time to actually just freaking do it, when they’re quiet enough to. And I’m tired of asking for things and needing things done for me. Especially things like this that he doesn’t really seem to care much about. The thing is, though, is that these are all time-sensitive kinds of things, if you will. Their adorable, tiny little hands and feet will only get bigger. If I don’t do these things now, I will regret it and wish I had done it.

Speaking of photos and projects, I keep spending money on them. So far in the last month or so, I haven’t been spending much at all, since all I do is sit on the couch and feed or pump. But these projects that I’m excited about–some of them cost money. I’ve made a few trips to the nearby craft store and spent a decent amount. Not to mention the professional photo shoot we did–I will order some prints but not too many. It’s hard, because as a photographer I really dislike it when clients are too price-conscious and cheap. I am not cheap, but as a client, I honestly can’t afford much. But I won’t make that the photographer’s problem–I will just order a few things for now and maybe more later if I’m working again.

My back suddenly started aching from all the hunching I seem to do–at the sink, at the changing table, at my desk, even somehow sitting on the couch.

I’m at this weird in-between stage of body and wardrobe. I realized today (or was it yesterday?) that I’m no longer eating for three and I need to shape up. But then I remembered I’m pumping to feed two, and allegedly one is supposed to take in 3,000 calories a day when breastfeeding. Yikes. Does that mean I don’t need to feel bad about going to the Jack in the Box drive-thru for curly fries and mini churros? And my clothes…I guess I need to get a few items that aren’t maternity but that are bigger than my previous size. I’m currently apple-shaped (I have no waist and a chubby midsection) and I hate it. I’ve been still wearing maternity clothes for the past few weeks, but they don’t fit quite right (obviously), and I’m tired of my one pair of maternity jeans. So I should probably go spend yet a little more money for some in-between clothes. And then I’ll have to make time to go through the boxes of my regular clothes that have been sitting in the basement. (Hallelujah for basements.)

It hasn’t even been a month and I’m some kind of restless. I feel like I need something but I don’t know what.

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9 thoughts on “Sigh.

  1. Oh, I can relate so much! It’s amazing how quickly the newness wears off and the exhaustion sets in. Even though you are worried about the financial factor, switching to formula might be the thing you need to ease your stress and restlessness, which might be worth the expense and you might even feel more motivated to pick up some work, without the stress and exhaustion of breastfeeding two. A happy, rested mother is more important to a baby’s (babies’!) well-being than anything else. ((((Hugs))))

    • Thanks. Yes, the novelty has definitely worn off and it’s starting to feel like a slog. :/ I cannot wait until we can do feedings every 4 hours instead of 3–hopefully we’ll all get more rest and I’ll do fewer pumpings. I’m going to do my best to keep going as long as I possibly can…I keep reading that supply goes up at some point. And I’ve only been doing this for four weeks. Jeez.

      • I hope I don’t come off as not supporting breastfeeding! After all, I nursed both girls until they were at least a year but at one point, I hit the wall with Stella and she was on formula for two months. I just think it’s okay to do whatever you need to do in order to be a sane new mother. In any case, your supply will definitely adjust. The composition of your breastmilk will change to suit the twins’ nutritional needs. Breastmilk is very fatty and that helps to satiate growing babies! They also will become more efficient at nursing, and as their stomachs grow, will take in more at each feeding & go longer without eating. For a supply bump, a bowl of oatmeal every morning does the trick, as well as fenugreek tea or capsules.

  2. I feel you in a way (a little different cause I only have one to feed…) I am loving being a mama but I am getting to a point where I need to vent to someone soon about my lack of time and feeling bad for needing so
    Much help (!!!) or I may just lose it. (& it needs to be someone who won’t downplay or make me feel bad for my feelings… Maybe next mama get together we have a rant & console party!)

  3. You’re doing great, Julie, and all these things are such normal stresses we all go through as mamas. If you ever need or want to email to vent, let me know! The feedings will get shorter, I promise. Your milk adjusts to meet their nutritional needs, so eventually they will be able to get all they need in much shorter sessions. The first couple of months are rough, though with the long feedings. If you want any ideas about increasing milk supply, let me know – I dealt with that, especially when I went back to work, and a few things did help. And yes, you are definitely still eating for three – you need to keep the calories up for your milk supply. Cutting calories can definitely affect supply. I had to resign myself to the fact that my body is only going to lose so much weight while I am still breastfeeding. It needs the extra fuel. Its not easy to come to terms with, but unfortunately it is what it is.

    As far as photography goes, I totally feel you. I did a 365 of Lila, and most of the early photos are taken with my iPhone – I was always holding Lila, so trying to deal with a DSLR was too much! In a couple of months when the twins’ sight is better and they are more alert, you’ll be able to put them down more on playmats, etc, and then the opportunity for photo ops will increase. When Lila finally learned how to sit by herself, it was like a choir of angels sang out to me! It totally changed everything. I was able to pick up the camera a lot more because I could put Lila down!

    I can’t really give you any advice about sleep as we still struggle over here with a sleepless kid – just get in as much rest as you can and let Andy help as much as possible so you can nap. Its hard. I can only send a lot of sympathy your way because I know how much it sucks!

    When you have recovered a bit more, have your doctor check your abs for diastasis recti (separated abs). I discovered that I had it and it has been causing quite a bit of back and hip pain (basically because my core is gone). There are rehab exercises that you can do to bring the muscles back together. This could be a factor in any back pain you have.

    Hang in there, Julie – you are doing an amazing job!

    • Thanks so much for the encouragement. 🙂
      I only hope I can make it until they do those shorter feedings. They drink from bottles pretty fast now (much faster than the first two weeks), and I occasionally nurse one. So I hope that’s enough to signal my body to adjust accordingly. And I’m definitely not cutting calories or anything…I just don’t eat or don’t eat enough. I know I’m eating less than when I was pregnant (I have much more to do now!). I only just starting actually feeling hungry this past week!
      With photos, I want to get some shots like the ones I took at my newborn hospital photo job. I need to find a way to get a clean background and maybe set up the tripod. I can bend more comfortably now, which will help. And they’re still really small, though I’m sure they’re bigger than when they were actual newborns. But the photos would still be good to have to document this stage.
      I’ve heard about diastasis recti and will get it checked at my 6 week appt. But really I can feel that my back needs to crack and be straight instead of hunched over. We need to get some risers for the changing table at least.

  4. the idea of paying for 2xformula sounds daunting, so I don’t blame you for wanting to delay that. (though if you can’t, I’m sure you guys will work it out.) obviously I’ve never had a baby, but as they get older, their feeds will get shorter and/or less frequent, right? hang in there! and ask andy for project help! that sounds like a fun family thing to do.

    • Yes, I hear that they eat less often…but whenever that starts sounds far away! The days are so long and it’s kind of discouraging to look ahead, in that there’s still so long to go.
      (By the way, sorry–I just saw your comment today. It got marked as spam for some reason!)

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