Pain at the pump


Written on Monday, March 12, 2007 by Jessica

Each day, I'm not pumping enough milk to cover the next day. My freezer stores are nearly exhausted. Over the last few days, I've been taking herbs, drinking more water, eating oatmeal, pumping more often and engaging in extra long nursing sessions to no avail.

In the past, herbs have resulted in a nearly instant boost. I don't know why they're not working as well now. I'm really worried. In the past, even when I had trouble keeping up via pumping, I still had enough milk for nursing. But lately he's been nursing for loooooong stretches and fussing as if he's not happy with the amount of milk he's getting. I've never encountered this before, even during growth spurts.

If something doesn't change soon, Seth will be drinking formula the day after tomorrow. I know, I know. Big deal, right? But it's my goal is to keep him formula free, and I'm about to fail. It's a lousy feeling.

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  1. Joanne |

    That sucks. I've noticed my supply is super low too. Typically James will nurse from only one side during feedings but lately like, the past week, I've had to feed from both since one doesn't seem to satisfy him. I am tired of breastfeeding but I certainly wanted to make it to at least a year!

  2. Jessica |

    Yes! I normally nurse from just one side, too. It's how I manage the pain I'm not supposed to be experiencing. But I've been having to offer the other side, too. I wonder if it's normal for supply to dip around this time.

  3. Joanne |

    Is Seth eating solids or is BF his main source of nutrition with some solids? I found that with Jamie I wasn't feeding him enough for his meals as in, portion sizes were too small. Maybe if you increase his solid intake (if it is your goal to get him on a solid diet) then the milk will somehow work out? Jamie gets nursed when he wakes up, he gets 3 meals of solids with milk immediately after if he wants it (he usually does not) and in between meals he gets milk for a snack. Then before bed he gets milk and sometimes over night if he wakes. But-when I started reading about feeding, nutrition, and portions I was surprised at how much to give him to eat and Jamie certainly eats it! I was underfeeding.

  4. Joanne |

    Do you think the dip could be change of season or time related somehow? It seems too weird that it would happen to both of us. I haven't done much reading on BF'ing since everything seemed to be going hunky-dory. I really don't want to break out the formula. I have like 6 cannisters of free stuff I got, but have refused to use it.

  5. Jessica |

    I'm basing his expected intake of breastmilk and solid foods on information that I got from the local health department. He's always eaten less than the range they recommend -- this is true for both breastmilk and solid foods.

    I know what you mean, though. After he started to get the hang of eating solids, he could really eat a lot. I was surprised. But then I was doubly surprised that he was supposed to be eating even more based on the health dept. guidelines!

    I don't really want to increase his solids at the expense of breastmilk, though. As it is, he only drinks somewhere between 6-12 oz. during the day while I'm at work. I do understand that eventually solid foods will replace the breastmilk he gets, but I do want to maintain an intake close to the recommendation.

    I did a quick google search, and I see that lots of moms seem to experience a dip at nine months. I also know a couple of people who weaned at nine months due to low supply. I'll bet this is a normal thing and your supply will bounce back soon. As for me, I'm going to start doing what I haven't wanted to do -- pump at night. Ugh.

    I have a couple of canisters of formula in my cupboard, too. I'm hoping to donate them to Women's Resource Center instead of using them. :)

  6. Anonymous |

    I was not going to post, but this is funny!

    When I read the title of your post, I immediately thought about gas in CA we are paying over $3.00/gal.

    Sorry can't give you any advice, but I hope your boobies make more milk soon!


  7. Jessica |

    I'll admit it. I chose that title on purpose. :)

    Gas is $2.62 here and on the rise. We'll never catch up to California, though, thank goodness.

  8. Joanne |

    $2.62?! Try $2.69 over here...and $2.75 if you go to a Mobil station.

    Yuck to pumping at night. I too am hoping to donate my formula to a shelter or organization like the City Mission. I almost did at Christmas time...but held on, "just in case".

  9. Joanne |

    Oh-and sorry about California...$3.00? That's crazy. Especially since I drive a Jeep Grand Cherokee.


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