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Hey Ladies! I will be going back to work next month and I'm really struggling with the idea of nursing/pumping and working full time.
Background - Nursing DD #1 was a major challenge and I hated it. It was painful the entire time and I gave up at 4 months. DD #2 has been much easier and I feel more passionate about it this time around. My milk supply is crap, so I have to supplement 1, sometimes 2, bottles a day right now. I average 2 oz a side when I do pump. Harper will be almost 5 months old when I return to work. I feel like if I make it six months, I will have met my goal.
I am a teacher, so there will be days where my 30 min. lunch break is the only break I get all day. I was thinking I could nurse Harper in the morning before work (6:20.) Pump at lunch or during my break (11:30). Then nurse or pump when I pick her up (4:00). Then nurse again before bed (8:00). She would obviously get at least 2-3 bottles of formula (or pumped milk) during the day at the sitter's house.
Am I crazy to think this could work? If I only end up feeding or pumping 4 times a day will that totally kill my milk supply? I feel like this would be easier if I had a normal job that I could take a 15 min. break to pump anytime I want. Not so easy when I have 18 seven year olds under my feet all day. Advice?
All I can say is that it is not easy - but I have managed to do it. I am an attorney and sometimes my schedule is workable and sometimes it is super difficult. Generally Ellianna sleeps through the night, so I pump an extra 5 ounces between when she goes to bed and when she wakes. By pumping I keep up that supply. If I am in the office, I pump every 3 hours. This week I am in court 2 hours away. Pump before I leave, pump in the car when I get there, and asked the Judge for a private room at lunch. (I found you cannot be shy - just got to be open that you need an area - generally if you say I have a new baby that I nurse, is there any room I can use in private for 15 minutes - they get the idea). Then I pump as soon as I get back to my car. I just carry a blanket in the car. I freeze any extra for days when the pumping is less than optimal. Generally my Monday supply is great after a weekend is nursing and my Friday supply is less than good. That is when I used the extra that I pumped from early in the week.
It is a challenge - but works for us. Any way you can pump at a time when kids are in specials or you have any part of a free period? You could always skip pumping and just nurse 3 times per day. For me, I just enjoy sitting and nursing versus giving her a bottle (which she will not take from me)
I have pretty much the same schedule. I feed DD in the morning around 6:30, pump at lunch time, then pump again on my way home around 4:30. I nurse on demand until bedtime at 8:00. She usually sttn (well, til 4am or so) and I nurse then. My supply was more than adequate at the beginning. I would be lying if I said it hasn't suffered a little, but I have been able to make it work. The fact that Morgan doesn't eat much during the day makes things a little easier. She seems to hold off til I get home then nurse for quite awhile.