If you’re easily offended or squeamish with very open language about breastfeeding…turn back now! I’m warning you, I use the word “nipple” very freely here!
Tonight, for the very first time, I pumped enough breast milk to collect!!! It was definitely a small amount, around 1 ml, but a very huge milestone and proof that all my hard work is paying off! When I saw the amount that was being expressed, I hopped up and carefully tip toed to grab a milk syringe (as to not shake off that precious golden droplet) and scooped it up. I continued to pump and hand express, and got a little more to collect that way.
I will say from my new experience in this that it’s way easier to wait until you have a hefty-sized droplet and use the reverse-plunge on the syringe to suck it up; otherwise, you spread the smaller droplet across the top of your nipple and it’s a lost cause.
Another wonderful trick I’ve discovered: EVOO. Just like Rachel Ray says, that extra virgin olive oil is for *everything*! I’ve been using it around the area that has contact with the nipple shield on the pump, and also on the nipple area. It works way better than the lanolin cream because it’s much thinner but still as protective and nourishing to the sensitive skin. It helps when I’m pumping because it creates a contact that helps with the vacuum effect and prevents the plastic shield from irritating my skin.
Lastly, this junk is starting to hurt. I can’t imagine what’s in store for me in the coming weeks. With the meds/herbs I’m on, I should be expecting my milk to start coming in sometime next week. I have started noticing that the over-excited hugs I receive from students aren’t so harmless anymore! That’s okay, I knew what I was getting myself into months ago when I started this process; not *ONE* person I talked to about it said “Oh you’re just going to love it when your milk comes in!”. No, definitely not. I have to admit I’m a little scared, but pain is only temporary and I’ve been through much worse!
I hope that these little tips and tricks (and words of encouragement) help anyone reading this who is breastfeeding, or thinking about it; whether you’re a pregnant mom, an intended mom, or an adoptive mom. It’s not an easy process and it requires a lot of dedication to scheduling and supplements, but if breastfeeding is something you want to do, it’s worth it to try.
Traire exdrordinaire, (google it!)