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Before having my son, I knew that I was going to be breastfeeding. I was not looking forward to it because honestly having my child suck on my boobs just seems weird to me. I had a plan that I would also pump allowing my husband to get up in the middle of the night to feed our son, giving me a few extra hours of sleep. The keyword in that sentence is “plan” and to this day my husband has yet to feed him at night because my boobs fill up by feeding time and I might as well do it instead of the pump. Pumping is not my friend!
I did not research anything about breastfeeding and I regret it because the first week was hell!
At the hospital, the nurses told me to pump after every feeding. I listened to them because they deal with new moms on a daily basis, I relied on their knowledge. After the first day, I asked the nurse to have the lactation person come to assist me because I knew I was doing something wrong from the pain I was having when I was feeding my son. The lactation lady told me to avoid pumping after every feed. She thought it would be a good idea to come and see her after a few days of being at home to make sure I didn’t need more help and answer any questions I had. I was glad I made the appointment to see her!
My milk supply came in on the fourth day and it was painful! My boobs were engorged and I spend almost 3 hours pumping. By the time I went to my appointment I was pumping 12 times and feeding 10 times a day. So, for the first week of my sons’ life all I did was Feed, Pump for 25/30 minutes, have a 40 min break then back to Feed, Pump. I had so much milk, all I kept thinking was “this can’t be my new life, something has to change!!!”
The Lactation explained to me that if I’m feeding then pumping my body thinks I have triplets and that is why I am overproducing. She told me to work on pumping less and just giving him the boob. I went home and started researching how to slow down milk supple and came across CABBAGE! Yes, I thought that was crazy but people wrote that it worked, so I gave it a try. I put cabbage on my boobs for 3/4 hours for two days straight and pumped less. By the following week, I was only pumping three times a day and for no more than 15 minutes! Cabbage worked!!!!
Today I am pumping maybe four times a week if that. My milk supply slowed down and I am producing enough for my son to empty out my boobs for me, instead of the pump! But I’m still counting down until my son is able to start eating solids so I can get my boobs back! P.S I still think it’s weird for him to suck on my boob!
The Lactation person was a lifesaver! A few breastfeeding tips I learned from her:
1. DO NOT PUMP AFTER EVERY FEED (unless they are not eating from both boobs and/or not eating enough from the boob)
2. Position is EVERYTHING
3. If it hurts, something is wrong
4. Only pump for about 10-15 min