Another week has passed. We're still feeling the love and feeling more committed to each other. Maybe it's the physical contact, or the time we spend together, or this little secret we have. I will say all this extra oxytocin makes me feel very lovey and patient and happy. It's a great thing :) See why ANR is amazing?
This week has been incredibly stressful. I feel like my hands are trying to adjust and maintain all the facets of my routine but it's become a lot for me. Even with the oxytocin boost, it's a lot. I hadn't been very interested in nursing due to these preoccupations. I told D I didn't know how I could do it all. He listened intently and offered advice to try and help; unfortunately there's nothing he can really do except offer words of encouragement. But if I can hold out until summer, I think things will be okay. I felt better and the racing thoughts were hushed by D nursing to sleep. We were content for at least that moment. And I knew I really wanted to continue this for a long, long time. He says, "I don't know why we'd ever want to stop." He's right. I don't know why, in the long term, we wouldn't want this.
One prime thing I've noted this week is increased breast tenderness. I'm not sure what exactly is going on but I do know that my breasts are more tender before a nursing session. My nipples are a little more tender as well, and always erect! D says my areolas are darkening and enlarging just the slightest bit and that my breasts seem to be getting bigger, too. While examining them in the mirror before my shower one night, I noticed they were definitely looking fuller, at least. They're becoming round! And the veins have appeared. Dark, blue veins sprawling across my breasts.
In our history, morning sessions have always produced little compared to our afternoon and evening sessions. This week, D remarked that mornings are "catching up" to the other times. My supply is increasing!
On Sunday, while the kids were out exploring the field near our home, I sat with D on the couch and discussed with him thoroughly what having this ANR meant. What an obligation and commitment it would be to have me fully lactating. We couldn't just stop or be casual about things once the milk really comes in. I don't want to leak in front of family or in public in general, and I don't want mastitis again, or blocked ducts! "I am going to need you more than ever," I told him, and he replied that he was very much expecting and anticipating it. He was very sweet about it. His calm, understanding demeanor (with an undertone of excitement!) is one of the things I completely adore about him. I smile thinking of how he smiled during this conversation. This just feels so right for our relationship.
We also spoke about how to manage it on vacations... especially our vacation with his family. There's a possibility I could be fully lactating by then. He seemed intimidated by the task of managing full lactation in secret when privacy will be scant; but we both decided we were up to the task, should it be necessary. That is why we have my little Medela Freestyle. It would be easy for me to sneak off to the car, or out and about somewhere and pump if we cannot manage to find time away from family. And we're on an easy schedule of three times a day. Morning and evening shouldn't be a problem. I think we'll be okay.
I'm curious about how close I am to indicator 4... on Monday, about 1 1/2 hours before D got home for lunch, I felt fairly full and somewhat sore. Moreso than was typical. It felt much better after nursing, thought there was still discomfort due to developing breast tissue. I haven't had that feeling in the evening or in the morning, but I think I'm abnormal. I make the least in the morning, and the afternoon I make the most; evening is in between the two.
I'm very much looking forward to week three. I'm hoping I can report that I am at indicator four. I anticipate a session or two that might need to be a pumping session instead of nursing. If it leaves me feeling still too full and sore, that'll be a pretty reliable sign of indicator four!