My boobies are tenacious grafters. 'A' graders no less. They thoroughly deserve an honorary doctorate, ney an OBE,for their valiant and tireless efforts summoning milk for my little girl.
Sat at my humble kitchen table I wistfully picture the queen knighting the hefty contents of my nursing bra for their lactating services to her royal highness' kingdom. This honour would, of course, be duly bestowed upon me at a refined, yet thoroughly indulgent high tea and victoria sponged affair, set amongst the pungent greenery of her back yard, and in the company of her upper, upper class chums, and the Middletons. Elton John and the Beckhams are thank fully nowhere to be seen.
The thing is, as much as my boobies have a penchant for creating unlimited reserves of Gold Top, I need to turn the holy grail of milk OFF.
You see I've been breastfeeding Little A for two years and it's now with very mixed emotions that I need to stop. I say need as I'm very certain that there is a link between my constantly fluctuating emotional state and breastfeeding.
I've always laboured under the illusion that breastfeeding protects against depression. I think by and large this is true, especially during the first six months when levels of the bonding hormone, oxytocin, remain high. But this is not necessarily the case if you possess an intolerance to the other hormones oestrogen and progesterone.
I've recently discovered, backed up by my GP's opinion, that I've a sensitivity to the hormone, progesterone. After some research I uncovered that a sensitivity to progesterone reduces levels of the feel good hormone, serotonin, and increases the levels of the stress hormone, cortisol. This is an unwelcome recipe for restless sleep, mood swings, depression, aggression and all manner of unpleasant personality traits. And this has been me, on and off, for that last two years. Sound grand company don't I?
Upon reflection I clearly see that I've suffered from the effects of raised progesterone levels before my period and during pregnancy. I've always experienced PMT, I once became very teary within days of taking a progesterone dominant contraceptive pill and then experienced almost borderline psychotic depression during my first trimester of pregnancy. And according to my informative GP hormone levels remain raised throughout breastfeeding. So I need to stop. I want to see if the effect of milk free breasts helps obliterate the storm clouds I've been toiling under.
So the plan is this .....
- Wean over the next month (have called in the A-Team)
- Wait a month to see the effect on my mood
- Have some homoeopathy and acupuncture to re balance hormone levels
- If none of the above work I may need a course of anti depressants or St Johns Wort
So is there anyone else out there at the mercy of their hormones?
*I would like to make it quite clear I am not a royalist but would be partial to a few cakes and cups of earl grey on her majesty's finely trimmed lawn. Beats sweaty Starbucks any day.