Re: low milk supply
Welcome and congratulations on the new babies! I'm sorry you've had a rough time with nursing them so far, but I really admire the fact that you've made the commitment to pump and that you have continued to try getting them to latch. As they grow, the size of your nipples/breasts will matter less and less, as they grow more and more. That's the good news.
The bad news is that making more milk requires removing more milk, which means pumping more often, or for longer time periods, or having the kids nurse effectively. Considering the amount of work you're already doing... It may be difficult to figure out how to get more pumping sessions in. And since the babies are currently about 75% formula fed, their volume needs will probably increase with time. (Breastfed babies' volume needs change relatively little compared to those of formula-fed babies.). That means that the 25% of the babies' diet you're producing today may ultimately make up a lower relative percentage of their diet.
I know that all sounds very discouraging. But please don't be discouraged! You are doing an amazing job and any percentage of your babies' diet that is breastmilk is valuable for them- be it 100 % or 1%. It's also valuable for you, since making milk has lots of health benefits. And if you can ramp up the pumping, or get the babies to nurse, i think there's every reason to expect that you can get your supply to increase.
Just a couple questions about possible physical barriers to increased supply:
- Are you currently pregnant or on hormonal birth control (icluding Mirena)?
- Have you been tested for thyroid problems, PCOS, or retained placenta?
- Did your lactation consultant check your shield size? (Poorly fitting shields can impact production.)
Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"