Alternatively titled: I sure hope my boss doesn’t use the internet
Alternatively titled: Assuming my boss doesn’t live under a rock (which I know to be true because he lives down the street from Kelsea and she lives on a street with houses, not rocks), I sure hope he doesn’t read my blog
Alternatively titled: To all those ladies who tried breastfeeding and it didn’t work out – believe me, I understand
Sometime Wednesday I developed a plugged duct in my right breast. Sorry kids, no pictures. Not for the first time by any means. In fact, I’ve had enough now that as soon as one shows up I get to business.
I spent most of Wednesday night unable to sleep because I was in so much pain. I nursed, I massaged, I heated, I pumped and I showered. And when none of that worked I sterilized a needle and, as described by my therapist, performed self-surgery. The milk blister was visible on my nipple so I popped it.
This was effective in the sense that I was able to drain about 90% of the lump in my breast. This was not effective in the sense that I also managed to crack my nipple. The crack was tiny and it didn’t bleed so I thought nothing of it.
Then yesterday morning Ruby’s spit-up was brown. Which is to say there was blood in it. I called the advice nurse, gave her the data and we both agreed it was most likely blood from my nipple (even though I had never seen any). She mentioned a few things to look out for and that was that. I handled it well. I even commented to my mom that I felt like I had an appropriate amount of anxiety. I was concerned enough to ask, but I was holding myself together.
One of the things the nurse said to watch for was black, sticky poop because that could indicate internal bleeding. So of course, Ruby’s next poop of the day was black and sticky. Great. I traded in my afternoon run for an extra dose of anxiety and a series of phone calls and emails.
The second nurse I talked to sounded like she had been smoking for the last 50 years. She seemed unconcerned, but then again, she wasn’t overly concerned about smoking for 50 years. So I asked her to talk to the pediatrician.
The pediatrician is of the opinion that it’s all the result of my bleeding nipple. Yes, even though I have never seen a drop of blood come out of it or in any expressed milk. Apparently there could be enough invisible blood getting through to cause all this. I was instructed to pump and dump until my nipple heals so we can rule out anything more serious.
This, of course, means that Ruby’s milk supply was all of a sudden cut in half. And poor, little Seborg* is now being subjected to the mother of all growth spurts. All of us are hoping that Seborg can pick up the slack. Sooner rather than later. If he can’t, I suppose we will supplement with formula and hope the extra iron doesn’t color Ruby’s poop black.
The plugged duct meant that I had to skip yoga this week, and if we’re still on the singular boob program I will have to skip it again next week. The pump is rubbing me raw, and I’m subjecting myself to water torture in order to support my milk supply.
But what I’m really looking forward to is re-introducing my crippled breast back into the picture after Seborg doubles his milk production. After all, we wouldn’t want him to miss out on the plugged duct party.
*For those of you that don’t know, Seborg is the name of my left breast. Named, of course, after Dale Seborg, co-author of Process Dynamics and Control. Don’t ask.