|Shawn feeding Abby|
I've been pumping since they were born. 12 weeks (on Friday) of pumping! I think I could do another blog post just about pumping, but I think I really would be the only one interested in that. I pump 6-7 times a day (though they recommend 10 for twins, but I haven't figured out how to get 10 pumpings in) for about 20 minutes each time. My last pump is a power pump for an hour. I worked up to 20 ounces per day. (However there was a period when I took some allergy medication and my daily totals dropped to around 12 ounces before I figured it out.) I take most of the milk up to the hospital and occasionally put some in our freezer for the future.
|Annie feeding Katie|
Then last Monday I showed up at the hospital and they told me we were going to try bottle feeding the girls. I was so upset! I didn't want to try bottle feeding, I wanted to give them more time to figure out breastfeeding! I wanted the switch to go on first! The OT came and we talked about it. She said the bottle was the best way to get the girls home. And I agreed. And it was amazing, both the girls did amazing at their first bottles, eating at least half of the bottle! Soon the girls were on "cue based" feedings. Meaning, if they woke up for their feedings every three hours and cued, the girls would be fed with a bottle. If they didn't wake up and cue, they would be fed through the NG tube in their nose. And if they didn't eat all of their bottle or get enough breastfeeding, they got the remainder in the NG tube. I still tried breastfeeding every day. It worked! At least they were doing a bottle, but again, not enough to move on to the next step. So, last night they took them a half a step, they took their feedings down from 47mls (a full feeding based on their weight) to 36mls, about 75% of a full feeding. This way they would get hungry between feedings. If they didn't wake up they would get the NG tube, if they took a bottle they could take as much as they wanted, up to the full feeding.
As much as I wish breastfeeding was going better, I have to say the bottle feeding is pretty nice. The nurses feed the girls if Shawn and I aren't there, and it's great that Shawn can also feed the girls. It will be wonderful to come home and not feel like I'm the only way they're going to eat, like it was with Eliza. We were pretty determined that these girls would take bottles at some point. We're still working on breastfeeding, and I'm definitely planning on doing it at home too.
So, there's a LONG post about feeding a preemie. It's been such a long road, and it feels so good to be at the end of this long road. Katie is right behind Abby. She had an eye exam today which can make it harder to take a bottle, so she'll start on request tomorrow, or if she does anyway, she'll skip on request and go straight to on demand! Yay! We're close! Just a few more steps and then HOME!