It has been about a thousand years since I've been on the forums, but I need help.
When I started my full-time job, I realized that it is extremely difficult to pump at work. I get two fifteen minute breaks and one half hour lunch, and I have been able to pump once in the two and a half months I have had this job. The first time I went to the lactation room, I knocked on the door, and the lady inside said, "Occupied!" and that was it.
Not that I begrudge her her privacy, but that was a tough day; I was so engorged. My baby had slept through the night, then I had overslept in the morning, so that by 12 noon it had been 14 hours since I had nursed- and this coming off of a full-time nursing schedule. By the time I finally got home, at 5:30, it had been 19 hours, and I, of course, was dying.
The next day, I wasn't nearly as engorged, and I gave up the idea of pumping at work b/c I didn't know the "rules" about it.
Since I wasn't pumping at work and I was only pumping a couple times a day at home, as my baby has gotten bigger and hungrier, she has gotten more and more formula and less and less milk.
I have since given up pumping at home since I'm not able to get much milk at all, and it's so frustrating.
I don't know if I'll be able to start pumping at work since it takes about 10 minutes to let down with the pump and it takes a couple minutes to walk down and a couple minutes to walk back, so on my fifteen minute breaks I would get a couple drops and have to turn around and go back; the one time I pumped on my lunch, I wasn't able to eat at all, and I only got one ounce.
So, now, I'm nursing about two feedings a day (my baby is five months old now) and the rest of the time she gets a bottle.
I want to get back up to breastfeeding more. At this point, I have to give her a bottle on my days off b/c my milk supply is just not up to getting her through an entire day without help from the friendly folks at Enfamil. I mean, formula won't hurt her, per se, but I'd really much rather she have my milk and have the best thing available to her.
Plus, formula is extremely expensive and mommy's milk is free.
I know that it's about time for her to start solids, and since it's all but impossible for me to pump at work, I don't think I'll ever get back to exclusively bfing, but I really do want to increase my milk supply.
Should I just start pumping on one side and nursing on the other whenever I nurse? Should I eat oatmeal for breakfast every day and them pump whatever I can at work (and skip lunch)?
I am open to any and all suggestions.