Express Yourself! (Or your milk)

So if there’s one piece of advice I can give a new mum, it’s to invest in a good breast pump and express some milk every day for your partner to feed the baby.  This is if you decide to breast feed exclusively of course. If you decide to use a mix of breast and formula, or if you end up needing to do whatever reason, this is completely irrevelent for you!

A girl at work told me she’d done this and when I was pregnant I went to a breastfeeding workshop where the midwife also recommended it. She was amazing! This crazy old Irish lady I loved her. Anyways she said, express milk and let your partner give the baby a bottle..do this no earlier than 3 weeks after birth and no later than 6 weeks after..and make it regular so the baby doesn’t forget he/she likes it.

This is what we did and Dan decided he’d like to give the first feed of the morning, round about 6am..which works out well because I have a lot of milk at that time so it’s easier to pump milk…also means he gets up at 6 with the baby and I sleep in till about half 7! In fact today I slept till 8.20…amazing lie in. All night when I’m getting up to feed Freddie, I know I only have to keep going till 6 when Dan’s shift starts..

It’s not for everyone; I know some mums would rather not do this so that’s for you to decide, but I’ve personally found it to be a life saver..not only do I get that extra hour and a half every day of sleep, but the baby is used to using a bottle and sometimes my mum can babysit..when Freddie was about a month she would come and stay the night and give him his feeds all night so Dan and I could have a proper night’s sleep..I still had to wake up to express but it still really helped.

I got mastitis at one point and went to bed with a terrible fever and my mum could give Freddie some of my expressed milk while I rested..that was when I was REALLY grateful.

On our anniversary, I saved up 3 feeds and we went out for brunch and bloody Mary’s..This week we’re going to a gig. I’m not out all the time, dumping my baby on a sitter, but I have a little bit of freedom and it’s lovely!

I’m pretty lucky in that I’ve always had a lot of milk to spare so I can stock up..I’m even going to start donating milk to Kings hospital for the premature babies..So this has always worked for me…

It does give me a bit of an obsession though…

DO I HAVE ENOUGH UNITS OF MILK IN THE FRIDGE???!!!!

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My current stash

I NEED TO PUMP MORE MILK!!!

I recently got a new pump..I was using a manual one before and now I’ve got the WHICH BEST BUY Mendela Swing electrical thing which has changed my life. I can’t believe the time I wasted with that retro thing! (Me and Dan are a bit obsessed with WHICH BEST BUY too. We don’t buy anything anymore without checking which first.)

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The new pump

The reason I got the electrical pump was the manual one stopped working and I was literally milking my boobs with my hands like a cow. And that hurts.

I remember actually in the first few weeks of having Freddie I felt a bit like a cow or a milk machine..I was feeding him so often, like every hour all day and night..I look quite fondly on that time now..things were so simple..change nappy, feed, cuddle..now it’s all..AM I READING ENOUGH STORIES? SLEEP TRAINING??? TUMMY TIME!! But back then you didn’t get rewarded with a beautiful smile..it was more like having a little pet.

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My pet

But anyways..that’s my advice even though you didn’t ask for it.

Bye!!!

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