Discouragement while Pumping
One thing that I find VERY frustrating is pumping and pumping to replace a bottle feeding only to learn that your little one gulped down a million millilitres (or ounces—whatever you use to track the amount you’ve pumped). This happened last night and it was heartbreaking. Here’s how the night went: My mother was incredibly gracious and kind and agreed to watch my monkey so that I could go out on a date with my husband to celebrate my birthday. My baby is almost four months now and this was our first night out. Now when I say ‘night out’, what I mean is that I made a reservation for a restaurant for 5pm on a Monday night and we planned on being back to pick up our baby by 7pm (as it turns out, most restaurants are not crazy busy on Monday nights in the early evening but I couldn’t stand the thought of having to wait in a line for a table while my little one was away at Grandma’s…not a good use of my time!) I nursed my little one at my parents’ house right before we left and assumed she might need a bit of a top-up while we were gone just to be safe. I over packed milk (two 3-ounce bottles and a 4 ounce freezer bag) and when my husband and I returned from our 1.5 hour date, she had gulped down both bottles! To add to my loving frustration, she nursed when we got home!
It’s times like this that I wonder if it really will be okay when I return to work. I have been pumping like crazy to get a big stash built but even with that, I don’t pump nearly enough to replace what this little milk monster can devour. My saving grace will be knowing that I am working very very hard on building a freezer stash and that I will be finding a way to pump at work to replace as many meals as possible.
Here are some things that help me stay positive when I pump:
-Being thankful: I am thankful that I live in a time when breastpumps are readily available and technology has improved so that pumping at least some milk is possible
-Having some control: With things like fenugreek supplements, eating lots of veggies, and increasing my water intake, I find it relieving to know that there are at least some things I can do to increase my milk supply. Even if I’m not getting the full amount that I want, knowing that I’ve come a long way just through the choices I’ve made is reassuring.
-Remembering that pumped milk is extra milk: Since I am not exclusively pumping, any milk I pumped beyond regular feedings is extra milk (unless I’m pumping to replace a meal). Milk productions is based on supply and demand so I use my breastpump to demand more out of my breasts and so far I have been able to have my demands and my baby’s demands met.
-Remembering that pumping is work: I have a whole post on this that you can read HERE but in a nutshell, reminding myself that pumping is a noble job and I’m doing it for a noble (and adorable) cause makes it easier to stay positive while pumping. Sometimes I even open my photos on my phone to look at my baby and remind myself how important it is.
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