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Pumping Tips September 24, 2012

Pumping can be so challenging and not fun! I have pumped for 3 children; I have changed a few techniques and most importantly changed my attitude. My milk can literally letdown at the sight of my pump now – with my first child I could never letdown. In addition to this I have found that my body responds differently to different types/brands of pumps, so I needed to find what worked for me. I hope a few of the tips I have learned can help others!

-Comfie chair and relaxing atmosphere

-Coconut oil on nipples for lubrication

-Hands free pumping bra

-Embracing the experience and becoming one with the pump

-Massaging/compressing breasts and tilting flanges in all directions while pumping

-Once the milk stops flowing:

-Massage/compress breasts all the way back to my armpits

-Shake breasts while leaning forward

-Manually or hand express for a few minutes

-Pump again until a few minutes after the milk stops flowing (tells you body to make more milk)

-Then take your time sitting there with your breasts hanging out…take your time putting your pump parts back away and the milk you pumped. Smell it and look at it and imagine your baby drinking it. Keep your pump where you can see throughout the day, even when not pumping. Look at it and think how amazing it is that it enables you to provide your human milk to your baby. A lot of pumping is attitude . . . relaxing and getting good letdowns and growing to love and appreciate the experience helps so much.

 My 3 year old has seen me pump so many times he can put the flanges etc. together by himself!


I Can’t Steer a Parked Car September 11, 2012

Naomi is 9 months old. 9 months is the age Caleb was when I made peace over losing my nursing relationship with him. I could simply say, I passed my goal of 6 months, we overcame the worst of the difficulties regarding the tongue tie, things are “okay.” But, I will not settle for “okay”.

Why should I force her to compensate? Why should I put her lungs at greater risk of aspiration, why allow artificial nipples to ruin her oral development, why feed her formula and mess with her delicate little gut? Why not shoot for the best? I have waffled over this for 2 months. No more pondering or second guessing. I choose to push forward. “You can’t steer a parked car.” So I turn the key, and press the gas. My tank often runs near empty…but, I never run out.

I started domperidone for milk supply today. Tomorrow I begin pumping and Naomi has a weight check. Wednesday we will attempt exclusive breastfeeding. Friday we will check milk transfer with an IBCLC. We will continue suck training exercises and craniosacral therapy as we are able. If there is a bump in the road or we take a wrong turn, we will re-route; but, I refuse to take my foot off the gas. At this point I do not know our destination – the earth is round. There is no telling just how far we can go, so I am driving.

 This is her face after nursing, which she now calls, “nun-nun.”