My DD just turned 11 mos old and is in daycare 9-5 each day. She eats 3 solid meals plus an afternoon snack each day and nurses enthusiastically when we're together. Her routine for a long time at daycare had been morning and afternoon bottles and nursing on my lunch hour. At around 9 months she started routinely skipping bottles, so I asked daycare to be very diligent about offering a bottle before solids every morning and afternoon, and since then she's been taking the two bottles each day again. Over the last few weeks I've been skipping pumping here and there, usually in the afternoon. I have not noticed any difference in my supply--I'm still able to pump just as much and my baby is still nursing fine, seems to get a lot of milk and be satisfied at the breast.
I used to be extremely careful about making sure I pumped at least what she was drinking from bottles. Now that I see the end of pumping in sight, I've thrown a little caution to the wind and have started using up my frozen milk stash to compensate for not always getting in that second pumping session.
Is this OK? I guess I have essentially started to pump wean before my baby has started to transition from bottles during the day. My sense is that my milk supply has really stabilized and is not so sensitive to missing feedings (pumpings) and that there is plenty in the freezer to get her through to her birthday.
My fears are that:
1. this is having an impact on my supply that is not apparent to me now
2. my baby will still need my milk after she turns 1 (maybe she won't drink or won't tolerate cow's milk and maybe she won't be able to get enough when we're at home in the evenings). At which point my supply will have dropped AND I'll be running out of milk in the freezer
I LOATHE pumping and want to do as little as possible which is why I'm motivated to push this particular envelope.
Also, what will happen when she no longer gets breast milk at daycare? Do you offer cow's milk in a bottle? Sippy? So far she has gotten a sippy of water with meals and she is sometimes able to get a good drink from it but sometimes not so much. I would be reluctant at this point to rely on her to get adequate hydration from a sippy cup.
Am I doing this wrong?