With our first child, nursing was a totally natural, easy, and carefree process. He was born to me, and my body did the things women's bodies have been doing for eons. He nursed until his little 3 year old self was too busy to sit still.
With our second child, despite the fact that she joined our family through adoption, I assumed the process would be equally natural, easy and carefree. My thinking centered around the idea that making mommy milk is mostly a supply and demand process - baby nurses, breasts create milk. Right when nursing a child after pregnancy, wrong when it comes to inducing lactation. Determined to give my little sweetie the essential bonding and as much high-quality nutrition as I could, I turned to herbs, oatmeal, stout beer and finally pharmaceuticals. Viola, the drugs delivered milk as promised. We enjoyed our lovely bonding nursing for 3 1/2 years when I declared us to be done.
Now awaiting number 3, I'm a wiser and more prepared adoptive mama. I know about how adoptive nursing works, and I know about inducing lactation. People in Canada researched and presented on the topic. I've memorized the entire document, which goes by the name of the Newman-Goldfarb Protocol.
The thrust of the method is that I take a particular brand of birth control non-stop for 6-9 months to mimic pregnancy. I also ingest a drug called domperidone (It was created for reducing nausea in cancer patients, only problem being the drug induced lactation in both men and women. As if fighting cancer wasn't bad enough without being engorged). About a month before baby comes, I'm to pump every 2 hours to mimic a newborn's feeding patterns which builds supposedly enough production to feed the baby. I'm not making any promises on the pumping part. We did okay without it last time and pumping rates very low on my list of enjoyable pastimes.
The Newman-Goldfarbs plan enthusiastically suggests that closely following the protocol will allow my body to provide most if not all of my baby's nutritional needs. Still, my trusty Lact-Aid supplemental nursing system and some new bottles are standing by in case baby needs a little extra along the way.
10 months into this hormone cocktail and the adoptive wait, I'm ready to drop my mild-mannered secret identity and feed a baby. It is one of my super powers, after all.