Slow-weight-gainer…

When I took my baby for her 4 month vaccine her pediatrician said that she is not gaining weight fast enough. And even though she was still in the lower green percentile (and not in the underweight zone) it was worrying because she might begin to drop to the orange/red range if she continued gaining weight this slowly. It was recommended that I start her on formula. I was told that my milk supply was low. My heart broke… I have heard so much about this ‘low milk supply difficulty’ in moms but have read enough to understand that it can be overcome. Breastfeeding so far had been such a wonderful experience for me. I don’t have anything against mommies offering their babies formula. It is necessary sometimes – in illness, employment responsibilities and other obligations, and sometimes, it’s a personal choice -I respect that. But it was my choice to exclusively breastfeed my baby. I have wanted to do this ever since I was pregnant with her. I have read of its benefits and also that they gained less weight than formula fed babies. But with all of that, I knew that her weight chart still looked concerning. But, I was determined to try harder. To do everything possible to get back on track. So, I called the midwife (who had visited me since Ahalya’s birth and who I wasn’t too fond of but am very grateful to after this experience). She came over and told me that if I really wanted to make it work, I should start feeding her every one and a half hours again – like a new born! To build-up my milk supply there needs to be a demand, so that’s what I did. It was hard because here I was back at square one. I fed her and am still feeding her 10-12 times a day. In 2.5 weeks I checked her weight at the government clinic and it had increased considerably. And after a month, we noticed a steady climb! She wasn’t doing as great as her weight at birth but it was climbing steadily and improving. When I took her to the pediatrician two weeks ago (when she caught the flu) she didn’t think her weight was a concern anymore. I was very happy so relived! I’m going to keep at it. She will start solids in a few weeks. I hope her weight will improve even more then.

When I took my baby for her 4 month vaccine her pediatrician said that she is not gaining weight fast enough. And even though she was still in the lower green percentile (and not in the underweight zone) it was worrying because she might begin to drop to the orange/red range if she continued gaining weight this slowly. It was recommended that I start her on formula. I was told that my milk supply was low. My heart broke… I have heard so much about this ‘low milk supply difficulty’ in moms but have read enough to understand that it can be overcome. Breastfeeding so far had been such a wonderful experience for me. I don’t have anything against mommies offering their babies formula. It is necessary sometimes – in illness, employment responsibilities and other obligations, and sometimes, it’s a personal choice -I respect that. But it was my choice to exclusively breastfeed my baby. I have wanted to do this ever since I was pregnant with her. I have read of its benefits and also that they gained less weight than formula fed babies. But with all of that, I knew that her weight chart still looked concerning. But, I was determined to try harder. To do everything possible to get back on track. So, I called the midwife (who had visited me since Ahalya’s birth and who I wasn’t too fond of but am very grateful to after this experience). She came over and told me that if I really wanted to make it work, I should start feeding her every one and a half hours again – like a new born! To build-up my milk supply there needs to be a demand, so that’s what I did. It was hard because here I was back at square one. I fed her and am still feeding her 10-12 times a day. In 2.5 weeks I checked her weight at the government clinic and it had increased considerably. And after a month, we noticed a steady climb! She wasn’t doing as great as her weight at birth but it was climbing steadily and improving. When I took her to the pediatrician two weeks ago (when she caught the flu) she didn’t think her weight was a concern anymore. I was very happy so relived! I’m going to keep at it. She will start solids in a few weeks. I hope her weight will improve even more then.

 

DISCLAIMER: I in no way recommend or approve ignoring the advise and/or instructions of your child’s pediatrician. I am only sharing my struggle with you as part of my journey as a new mom.

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