Mommy stuff: milk supply
This is not your general post [and it goes into boobie detail], but it's still news to me and a part of my life so it's here.
A few weeks back, I noticed my milk supply suddenly dropped. Where I used to pump out easily 3~4 oz very quickly, I found one day that pump after pump session, I could only squeeze out 1 oz. even after a lot of trying. I would literally have to squeeze my boobs. I had become lazy, since my supply - even after a few months back at work - wasn't a problem. I pumped, but not on a regular schedule...and gradually I had gotten complacent. Then boom...my boobs just weren't producing. I stopped feeling the let down of the milk.
I had about a month's supply frozen, and with Tesla almost 9 months, that would mean I could tie her over to 10 months with my milk. My goal has been a year based on research that the benefits of breast milk are still significant for the first 12 months. She started eating solids at 6 months, but I wanted her to have the breast milk benefits until at least her first birthday.
Anyhow, I felt more guilty than freaked out. 10 months would have been more or less fine; I just wanted to actively decide that Tesla was ready instead of having to stop due to low supply because I didn't pump regularly enough. After a year, I'll play it by ear, letting her feed for comfort, but easing away from actually 'feeding' on the boob. I wanted that choice for her vs. my boobs calling it quits due to my own negligence.
So I pumped more consistently. Every whimper I heard during the night I fed her (to encourage stimulation). At work instead of pumping for 5 minutes and rushing back to work, I sat there for as long as I needed until absolutely nothing came out...and I did that 3~4 times a day.
It was like coaxing a dying fire back to life. Slowly and gently. I'm happy to say I'm back in the swing. Not as crazy as before. I don't think I can do 4 oz. anymore. But I can do 2...and over several times a day that means enough for the next day while I'm at work. And I still have the frozen reserve. I feel the let down again...even a little bit of engorgement.
I did email La Leche League of San Francisco for advice when it first started. I just got a response. (which was just reference to an online site). I sorta knew what I had to do, but was curious if there was some trick. Waiting for over a week is definitely NOT the answer. Stimulation I think is the most important. Even if nothing seems to come out, just pump pump pump.
hmmn: musings from the far east(erwood)
Big in Japan
Ed the Cat
Anil, the Nigritude Ultramarine
A Full Belly
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