Monday, 21 April 2014

Letting go of expectations

As the days go by and Baby A still struggles with her feeding, I have become more disheartened.

I had expectations, that she would be off her naso-gastric feeding tube and feeding orally by 37 weeks gestation, by the time she went home, by a week or two after she went home, by the time she was 3kg.

As each milestone has passed by, and her feeding has not improved, I have become more stressed, over it, tired, weary.

Tired Mummy and baby

Trying and trying to get her feeding orally has been a 2 hour marathon every 3-4 hours. Each feed, and each day has felt like a failure to me.

I have tried everything to get her feeding (demand feeding, only breast, only bottle, warm milk, cold milk, undress her to keep her cold, blow on her face to keep her awake, meds to help her reflux, this list goes on.....)

When she has a rare good feed, I have let myself hope that the feeding tube will be gone soon. And then it's back to bad feeds and I feel cheated again.

This has been going on for weeks and weeks now, and I can't continue to take each feed as a personal failure or loss. My emotions are raw and I can't keep letting them be so swayed by how she feeds.

Yes it is a basic thing, that every baby should be able to do and it is frustrating that she can't. But no, it is not the be all and end all of her health. She is otherwise a pretty healthy and amazing baby and I need to remember that.

I have decided to try and let go of any expectations around her feeding, and let her do it in her own time. If thats a month from now, or a year, I need to take a deep breath, and accept it.

And, most of all I need to remember that I cannot control this. I need to rest and trust in God who loves Baby A far more than I ever could.

Of course saying this is easy, doing it not so much. I'm sure I will still have some down moments. But now I have made the decision to let go of any expectations and to trust Baby A to learn in her own time, maybe I can enjoy our time together even more. And that day when the feeding tube comes out will be even sweeter for all the struggle to get there.

(P.S I am not looking for advice on how to get her feeding orally. If there is something to try, you can bet I have already tried it.)

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