Hello everyone. This is my first time here, but not my first time trying to find some answers. Five weeks ago I gave birth to my son, who was 26 weeks and 4 days gestationally. He was born at 8:10 a.m., was whisked immediately to the NICU, and an LC finally came to see me at 6:30 p.m. to show me how to pump.
My problem is that in 5 weeks, the greatest amount I've been able to pump is 3.8 oz in a day. I am using a Medela Symphony at home and a Medela Pump In Style Advanced at work. I have been trying to pump every 2-3 hours for 15 minutes with hand expression afterwards. I massage before and during, I eat oatmeal every morning, drink at least 64 ounces of water a day, and take 2440 mg of fenugreek three times a day; I tried mother's milk tea three cups a day before the fenugreek, but there was no improvement. I have also tried looking at pictures of him and thinking about him, but that doesn't trigger a response. I started back to work October 1st, and because of my job (high school teacher) I can only pump during my conference period and after school in my classroom, and those times are usually 4-5 hours apart. I have watched all of the Stanford videos, and I've noticed that my breasts do not react to the pump the same way as those of the women in the video. I cannot hand express into the bottle as the milk just dribbles down my breast, so I have to collect it with a syringe, and when I do, I usually get .5-2.5 mL more. I also have never been able to distinguish when my breasts are full or empty as I have never felt a difference in my breasts pre-pregnancy vs. post-pregnancy and they certainly have not grown any since I got pregnant nor since my milk came in.
I am now extremely concerned with my supply after what has happened over the last few days. Since October 2nd, my daily supply has dropped down to barely over an ounce. I had a breakdown Thursday evening due to being overwhelmed with work responsibilities and frustrations with pumping. I have since calmed down, but there has been no improvement, and yesterday, even though I stuck with the every 2-3 hours and got 6 sessions in (that includes waking up in the middle of the night to pump), I got my lowest amount expressed (1.3 ounces). I am afraid that something that I did during my breakdown (massaging too hard) may have messed something up. Does anyone have any insight? I really don't want to give up as I am holding on to the possibility that I will respond better once he is able to nurse, but I am so afraid of drying up. He will still get fed donated breast milk while in the NICU, but I want him taken care of when he's ready to come home.