Monday, February 18, 2013


Well, I made it through my first two weeks back at work. I was successfully able to pump 2 or 3 times a day while I was away from my sweet baby girl. It isn't easy, but I know what a priority it is for me and for my Keira. From the moment I wake up in the morning, I am planning and scheduling when and how much she will eat and when I can pump. It is like an intricate chess match to make sure she is latching on as many times as possible without me having just pumped. Calculating how much milk she will drink during the day without me and how much I am pumping. Is it enough? Will my freezer supply start to dwindle? My mind is constantly on breastfeeding and pumping. It is a little exhausting, but preparation and planning will make sure not one precious drop is wasted down a drain.

It is work, but it is worth it. Even staying up until 10:30 or 11:00pm when I am completely exhausted to get one last pump in has been worth it.  The last pump of the day is the most important, but the hardest for me to do. I am usually already laying in bed and I have to drag myself downstairs, but the extra 4 or 5 ounces I get is a necessity.

Feeding my daughter has been one of the things that I am most proud of in my life. She has survived because of my body alone. It blows my mind.

Some things I am learning as I go...
- freeze the milk in 2 oz increments. This way, it lessens the chance of any milk going to waste. If she needs more, it defrosts in no time at all. I love the Medela storage bags.
- Medela steam bags have become my best friend at work. 
- looking at pictures and videos of Keira while I am pumping definitely brings on the "let down" like nobody's business.
- do NOT look at how much milk you are pumping while you are pumping. It immediately stresses me out and it is not good for my body.
- no matter how much it sucks - keep chugging the water. When I don't drink enough, I notice a difference in my pumped milk amount. It is ridiculously hard to drink a lot of water at work especially because I can't just run to the bathroom and leave 25 first graders alone. 
- try to stay on a "schedule" - random pumping times are not as successful as sticking to a schedule... but any pumping session is better than none!
- when I sit down in the nurses office to pump, I try to close my eyes and relax for a moment. Sometimes, it is the only chance I get all day to have a quiet moment to myself so I take it for all it is worth. I block out the lesson plans that aren't done, the emails to parents that I have to return, and the dinner that has to be made when I get home. I sit still and think about my Gaga. I picture her smiling or the feel of her hair on my cheek. As rushed as I am to get them, I love those quiet moments. 

When the going gets tough, I just remember how much benefit both my daughter and I are getting out of it. 

When your freezer starts bursting at the seams with milk everywhere, you can organize it by date and put it in Ziplock freezer bags for extra protection and space saving.

Looks like a lot... sadly it probably wouldn't even last 2 weeks :(

How much milk do you usually get when pump for your 5 month old? Do you give your child the amount of breast milk you express? I am having a little trouble figuring out exactly how much she should have. Any advice out there?


  1. You are doing great momma!! KEEP IT UP:)

  2. Wow! So jealous of your milk supply. Thanks for your tips - we are living day to day here!! But I'm still proud she hasn't had any milk besides mine and its been six months!!! :)

  3. seriously amazing! i'm pumping just to get a day or two worth of it in case I need to!!

    You are amazing! i like to pump after the shower!

  4. Wow!! So awesome that you have that much stored up even though it won't last long! I pumped for the first year of Kendall's life. It was so hard but so worth it! I will do it for my next as well. It was so hard at my previous school so I am really hoping that it will be a lot easier at the new one! Makes you feel so good though doesn't it! I used a lot of your same tips as well:) Way to go girl!!

  5. I started pumping for my freezer stash a few months before going back to work, so that I'd have a good amount. I also pumped on the weekends in the morning after her first feed (I had the most then) and at night before I went to bed.
    My kiddo would eat about 4-5 oz about 4 times while I was gone (10-6)
    But my daycare lady was great about communicating with me.
    I would always pump in the morning, and send her with that bottle, too, for her 11:00 feed.

    Hope this helps. It's worth it!

  6. New follower from the link up!

    I have been exclusively pump for my 6 1/2 month old from day 1 so I totally get your stress. I use to pump 65-70oz a day but after getting mastitis at 5m and then the stomach bug a few weeks ago, I loss my supply big time. I only get 10oz a day now. You are doing great keep it up and let me know if you ever have any questions! :)