I am officially halfway through my 6 weeks of maternity leave, how’d that happen so quickly? The first week I was home I was missing my work mates so much, thinking about all the stuff going on that I was missing, and couldn’t really help solve. The second week I fell into a groove and didn’t miss work very much and started to enjoy my time off. This week, I am in full swing and can’t believe I only have 3 weeks left for my time off.
Over the last week, I have been pumping, pumping and pumping. The last few days I have had another blocked duct, again in my right side so I have been heating and pumping to release it, and finally last night it released, best feeling ever!!!! Okay, so this post is about to get real, I am a very open book and if you are afraid of TMI then I would stop reading now and just pop down to the last paragraph.
The last few days I have noticed acne in my cleavage. Now that I am HUGE in my chest area, I am cramming the ladies into bras, tank tops or anything nursing friendly, which means that I have cleavage like you wouldn’t believe. This also means that the ladies don’t get much time apart from each other. So, after pumping, I have been letting the ladies hang out…if you know what I mean. It is super sexy town at our house, let me tell you. Then I realized that the acne was itchy, burning and I wondered if it was actually a yeast infection. So I put on some Nystatin I had left over from a yeasty diaper rash bum from one of my kids, and it feels a lot better, but doesn’t look any better. I am giving it a few more days and then I will try applying some acne medication to see if that clears it up. So far, the rest of my ladies seem fine, so I am hoping it doesn’t spread if it is a yeast infection.
For anyone who has pumped or breastfed, I wonder if you feel the same as I do, but I have been thinking about how I can sleep without a tight nursing tank or bra at night and let the ladies have a bit of freedom. So two nights ago, I thought I would just let fate takes its course. I haven’t been leaking through clothes and I wasn’t sure if I would have let down in the middle of the night between pumps. So I put on a tank top that was not tight and went to bed and when I woke up I was soaked with breast milk, so I guess I do have let down between pumps. Still bound and determined to give some freedom to the upper deck, I decided to try out my new lily padz for the night and see how they worked. For anyone not familiar, they are silicon based breast pads that stick to your skin. Some ladies use them after they have stopped nursing or pumping with dresses or tops where they can’t wear a bra. I thought they would also work well for when I had a massage during or right after pumping for the next few weeks. So I read the instructions, put them in place, grabbed a light tank and headed to bed. I was more than excited to wake up to a dry shirt (although I am still dealing with some night sweats) and the lily padz still in place. I even had a bit of let down and it kept it all contained. They are amazing, run out and buy them now, now, now. This will be my new go to each night for sure.
Okay, the TMI is over, you can begin reading again…This week we packaged up 18 pounds of breast milk for Jackson, and sent it the same way we did the week prior. This time, we packaged it up almost at pick up time and it arrived with nearly no defrosting. Those Techni-ice sheets are amazing, I think I may buy some for camping. This will be my final week of pumping for Jackson, so I am trying to produce as much as possible to send his way. I will continue to pump for a few more weeks and start to wean myself off pumping around my 5th week. This will allow me more freedom between pumps, less pumping at work and maybe I will be done before we head out camping in mid-August. Either way, I have enjoyed the experience and I am so glad I was able to produce enough milk for Jackson over the last few weeks.
I weighed myself today and I am not down anymore than last week, but my belly is still shrinking. I am going to start walking this week each night to get a little exercise into my routine, which I know will be good for the heart and soul. I have been feeling really good emotionally, and I want to continue on that path, so exercise will help keep my mind clear. Here is a recap of my belly changes, I think the belly band I am using is really working. The changes are small, but I feel much more comfortable in clothes and I can fit into a lot more of my wardrobe.
Lastly, here is a picture update of Jackson, taken this week, which is also Sara and Derek’s anniversary (Lucky 7) . Isn’t he adorable? He is 8 lbs 10 oz and loves to be outside as much as his parents, loves eating, locks eyes with you and is working hard on using his hands, voice and tongue. This is his hand made quilt by Grandma Riley, isn’t it done with perfection? Billy and I also celebrated our 17 year anniversary on 7/17 (Sunday) with a day of sight seeing and furniture shopping for the front porch. We plan to do a staycation weekend sometime in August to celebrate officially when I am not pumping (for Jackson) and we can enjoy a nice bottle of wine, a fancy meal and a night out on the town.