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Thread: Going back to work

  1. #1

    Default Going back to work

    Have to go back to work in a couple of weeks and dreading it! My LO will be 12 weeks old when I go back. Worried about pumping at work because I hardly get breaks, won't have a place to pump, and won't be able to set out breast pump pieces to dry if I wash them. Want to find extra pieces so I can use a clean set and wash them all when I get home but they don't sell extra accessories to my pump (I have The First Years miPump) Any tips on this? Also worried about babysitter feeding her more than she needs. Wants to give her a bottle any time she fusses instead of finding another way to sooth her. Told her she only needs to eat every 3-4 hours. I give my LO a binky but she doesn't... Going into panic mode and not sure what to do! Any tips would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    517

    Default Re: Going back to work

    Good for you for committing to this even with known challenges at work.

    Here's great reference material for volume of milk when away http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/pumping/milkcalc/
    Our first nanny overfed. To be honest she did not work out. Our second nanny is a feeding pro. Very experienced and has been perfect from the start. Talk openly with your caregiver. If you're not comfortable with the conversation and s/he is putting up resistance, try to find someone who is receptive to your guidance or knows how to care for an EBF baby. This is YOUR baby. I now know that caregivers who want to do it their way or don't already have an approach that works for me simply aren't for me.

    Regarding cleaning the pump. I've read on this forum that you can pump and place the pump in the fridge when you're done. You can retrieve from the fridge and re-use same day. I absolutely do this when I'm in a hurry at work. I throw in a ziploc or wrap in paper towel, put in my insulated lunch bag in fridge and don't work about cleaning it till I get home. I also use Medela steamer bags, which I buy at target. 2 min to steam clean in the microwave and the bag can be used 20 times. Just follow instructions carefully.
    1st time mom over 40 to Alex(andra) b: 7/14/12

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    266

    Default Re: Going back to work

    Are you returning to 9-to-5 M through F? Or what is your work schedule? How long will you be away from your baby (stretch of time)?

    Can you check with Human Resources about finding a place to pump at work? Is there a Breastfeeding Coalition in your area? These groups have lots and lots of resources for working moms!! Check it out for sure!

    Some states have laws protecting breastfeeding/pumping mothers. You could see if yours does.

    In reality, some jobs just aren't pumping-friendly, and that's just how they are. And moms have successfully worked out a way to pump and maintain milk supply regardless!

    Here are some ideas:

    - More frequent, shorter pumping is better then fewer, long sessions.
    - Nurse baby, then arrive at work 10 minutes early to pump a bit before you get to your desk.
    - Pump during lunch.
    - Pump for a few minutes before leaving work, then nurse as soon as you get to your baby.
    - Offer to nurse frequently when you are with your baby. Nursing at night is a reality for a long time for a lot of working mothers because it is such a wonderful way to ensure milk supply goes on for a long time.
    - Try power pumping. If you have a long meeting or something coming up, pump short sessions in short succession (20-30 minutes apart, long enough to check some emails or return a phone call). Fit in 2-3 of these before the long meeting, then pump right after the meeting.

    To help pump more at a time:
    - Use breast compressions (hand in C shape, firmly but not to pain compress the breast without displacing nipple from pump flange, hold compression for a few moments, then rotate c-shaped hand and compress again). Do this while pump is going.
    - Start and/or end pumping session with hand expression. This video shows how it's done: newborns.stanford.edu/Breastfeeding/HandExpression.html
    - For me a pumping session would be like this: Double-pump w/electric pump until flow slows down. Switch to single side w/electric pump, doing two-handed breast compressions. Do this on both sides for several minutes, several times. Double-pump for a couple more minutes. End with hand expression. This more closely resembles the action of baby's mouth than what the pump can do on its own.

    I concur with pp that you don't have to clean parts every time. Even rinse with water, dry with paper towels, will get you through the day. Microwave bags are great.

    I also concur that if your care provider is not providing care the way you need, might be time to look elsewhere. The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding 2010 ed. has great info about how to bottle-fed a breastfed baby.

    Don't stress! Don't freak out! It will work out. It will!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2,207

    Default Re: Going back to work

    Here are a couple more links from kelly mom on bottle-feeding a breastfed baby, including some stuff you can print out and go over with baby's caregiver:
    http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/e...reastfed-baby/
    http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/f...ottle-feeding/

    Breastfed babies tend to eat small, frequent meals, whereas formula-fed babies tend to have less frequent, larger meals. A four hour stretch between feedings is a little long for most 12 week old breastfed babies, and a 2-3 oz bottle is completely normal. Breastmilk is digested easily and quickly compared to formula. So you might want to focus on limiting bottle size. One way to do that is to provide the milk in 2-3 oz sizes with 1 oz "toppers" as needed.

    Is there anyone you can talk to at work about when and where you can pump?

  5. #5

    Default Re: Going back to work

    Thank you all for the info and support!!! I work in a nursing home and I'm crazy busy from the moment I set foot in the door, till I stumble out at the end of the day. Bound and determined to keep my LO on breast milk! She has never had formula and I'm very proud of myself for it I will be away from my LO for work from 5am till 3pm or later on occasion. Work 4-5 days a week. Plan to pump and feed her right before I leave and pump at least twice while at work. So hopefully my LO will only miss about 3 feedings. Gonna go shopping for a little cooler to store milk and pump parts in Luckily I have a lot of ice packs on hand because fridge space is limited at work. As far as finding a location to pump, will just have to play it by ear from day to day. Empty rooms in my facility are used for meetings, training, and resident activities on a regular basis and tours of the facility are given frequently. The last thing I need is for a tour to walk in while I'm pumping, lol!!! All my bosses are women so hopefully they will be understanding and supportive when I return to work. Going to have a meeting with sitter this week as well to talk everything out and make sure she understands about her feedings.

    Thanks again for the support!!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2,207

    Default Re: Going back to work

    You might want to talk to your bosses before going back to work. Some mothers can get by with two pumping sessions in a ten-hour day but most will need at least three in that time. (Depends on your storage capacity/supply.) So if you can figure out a way to get the breaks you need beforehand it might be helpful to you. One tip for maintaining privacy is to have a sign that you keep with your pumping supplies saying, "Meeting in progress, do not disturb" (or something along those lines) that you tape on the door of the room you're pumping in. Also, you don't want to spend your precious break time looking for a room, so it might also help if that can be arranged in advance as well. Another tip if you are pressed for time is to have a hands-free pumping setup. There are hands-free bras/camisoles that work with various pumps. That way you can eat your lunch or do paperwork/email while pumping. Some mamas like to have pumping as relaxed, non-working time but others feel more relaxed if they are not sitting around thinking about all the things they should be doing while pumping. So you can see what works best for you.

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