Today marks the start of another journey in breastfeeding. Expressing or Pumping.
I’m using an electric pump which was kindly gifted to me by Tommee Tippee:
Pumping isn’t easy. Well I’ve never found it easy but if you can get your baby to take a bottle of expressed milk it can make your life a lot easier. If for example you had an important hospital appointment or meeting and you needed to leave your on demand feeding baby it will be a lot less stressful for you knowing that there is a bottle of milk just waiting for them.
So today. Day 1. First pump of the day and I got a measly 2oz. It’s disheartening especially as I pumped for about 5 times longer than I would feed for.
Having read up a lot about pumping whilst also feeding however I have found this is normal. 1.5-2oz per pumping session is the norm for a full time nursing mum. It means you will need to pump several times a day for a full feed but as I’m not planning on replacing pumping with feeding its not a problem.
I want to breastfeed for a year, that’s my goal. To do that I will certainly need to be away from my baby at some point even if only for a few hours. When Chloe is a little older I want to be able to leave her with my OH for a few hours so I can perhaps take Izzy out for some one on one mammy time.
During my research I’ve found some great pumping tips.
1. First up relax. The more stressed you are about getting enough milk the less milk you will produce.
2. Try to pump from one side whilst feeding from the other.
3. Pump immediately after a warm shower or bath.
4. Drink plenty.
5. Pump first thing in the morning and also late at night after the final feed of the day.
6. Use a good pump.
7. Eat. If you are feeding and pumping now is not the time for a strict diet.
8. Visualisation – some people swear by looking at photos of their baby whilst others imagine running water or streams.
9. If you nipples are sore after pumping rub in some cream such as Lansinoh.
10. During growth spurts your baby will want to feed more which may mean pumping will be more difficult. Try to relax about it during this time.
You will need to buy breast milk storage bags if you want to freeze your milk. Make sure you have adequate room in your freezer.
You can store milk for 5 days in the fridge or up to 6 months in the freezer. Clearly label each bag with date and amount pumped.
At the end of day 1 I had pumped a total of 6 oz over 3 pumping sessions. On day 2 I had pumped 8oz over 4 sessions. I will keep you posted on my progress.
Next up we see if Chloe will take a bottle. Following tips from others I am going to ask my OH to do this while I’m in another room. Planning to try this within the next fortnight.