Friday, April 2, 2010

Keeping up with Annika

Annika, my fourth child, was born at 28 weeks. I breastfed her three older siblings and was familiar with using a breastpump. I never thought I would be using it exclusively for nearly three months as I waited for her to come home. I was lucky enough to qualify for a free rental hospital grade breastpump while she was in the hospital. I had complications from the emergency c-section I had to welcome Annika into this world. I spent a few weeks in the hospital and missed a lot of time from work after the delivery. It seemed like the only constant for me sometimes was my pumping schedule. I always pumped at 2am. Annika was always weighed at 2am. When I was finished I would call the NICU to see how much she weighed. Since we lived nearly 30 miles from the hospital and I had other children to care for I didn't get to visit Annika as often as I wanted to. This 2am check-in meant a lot to me. The house was quiet and the nurses had the time to talk to me. To help bulk her up they requested that I bring in some bottles of hindmilk. I was producing so much milk that my freezer was packed and the nurses asked me not to bring anymore in because their freezer was full and they needed room for the other babies' milk. Annika came home 2 weeks shy of her due date. She started nursing just fine when she came home. She nursed till she was about 14 months old. She is a happy 7 year old who has a seizure disorder but other than that healthy and not worse for wear from being born early.

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