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I am freaking out about not having enough milk for my ds. He will be 10 weeks old when I have to go back to work Nov 5. I am a nurse working 3 12 hour shifts a week in a very busy ICU. With travel time etc, I am usually gone from 5:45 am to 8:00pm. With my 2 year old dd, I worked night shift. DH usually only gave her one bottle of EBM while I was gone, so I had no problems keeping up with her demand. She slept through the night at a very early age, even exclusively bf'ing - and she is still nursing now. But now I am working dayshift, and I don't know how I am going to be able to pump enough. My goal is to consistently pump 3 times while away. But I know that won't be enough. Any suggestions to make sure I can keep this baby only on breast milk?
 

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I work 12 hour shifts in ICU too (nursing student) and am nervous about returning in a few weeks. I work noc shifts though, then sleep all day. (which has its own complications) Do you have some stockpiled?
In the past with my ds, I pumped every 4 hours at work, both breasts. I would nurse right before I left home and then upon arriving home. If he had eaten recently, then I would pump again. I usually nurse just one side, so I would pump only one side. I usually leave my pump set up in a storage room on our unit (easier at night) or in the report room. That saves time. The three hospitals here all have a lactation room. My coworkers were always awesome about covering for me while I pumped. Might be more difficult for you though if you are one on one. I always packed some easy to eat snacks and took a big glass of water with me to pump.
Start practicing now with the pump... I have it down to a science of about 10 mins. It just takes organization and practice. I was most nervous about returning to clinicals for school and pumping during that day, but everyone has been really supportive, staff and my instructor. Don't be afraid to speak up for what your needs are to make this work. HTH.
 

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I work long hours too and couldn't pump as much as I would like at work. I woke up early and pumped before I left the house if I could. I would also pump at work right before I came home. By the time I came home and got settled, there was enough milk to satisfy my babies. Also at times I would stay up an hour or so after the kids went to sleep and pump a little then. I never got a huge amount but ds2 got no formula and I pumped for both of my kiddos until they were 13 months old. I'm glad to be past that time and both of my kiddos are still happily nursing at 2 and almost 4.
 

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Since you have a commute, have you considered pumping while driving? I made a hands-free pumping bra and my Medela PIS has a car adapter, so it could work (not sure if pumping while driving is legal
) That would give you 2 pumping sessions outside of work.

I also like to pump in the am before I leave and/or in the evening when I get home. I get the most milk when I pump one side while ds nurses on the other.

Depending on how much time you can take to pump at work, pumping for 10 minutes, then rest for 10, then pump again for 10 - that should give you 2+ letdowns.

Eat oatmeal and drink lots of water, pump on days you are off work, and nurse frequently on days off - those should all help too.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by peilover010202 View Post
Since you have a commute, have you considered pumping while driving? I made a hands-free pumping bra and my Medela PIS has a car adapter, so it could work (not sure if pumping while driving is legal
)
Holy s**t... I am so curious how you did this!!! I can't believe how ridiculously inconvenient pumping is! You think they'd have invented something hands free by now!

PLEASE...tell us how to make a hands-free pumping bra!!

(Sorry...went a little crazy with the exclamation points.)
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gwynthfair View Post
Holy s**t... I am so curious how you did this!!! I can't believe how ridiculously inconvenient pumping is! You think they'd have invented something hands free by now!

PLEASE...tell us how to make a hands-free pumping bra!!

(Sorry...went a little crazy with the exclamation points.)
You are cracking me up! I'm not a sewer, so I bought a sports bra made out of nylon/spandex. I cut 2 holes over each nipple (fairly small, but large enough to squeeze the horn through) and voila! Hands-free pumping. I used the same sports bra for 9 months while I pumped at work for ds1 and I'm doing the same thing again at work when pumping for ds2. So, I can enjoy reading a book while pumping.

Honestly though, I've never tried pumping in the car while driving. I would totally try it (if I really needed to), but I don't have a commute to work thankfully.

It would be easy to put t-shirt on with slits cut in them so you could be adequately dressed while do it too.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by peilover010202 View Post
You are cracking me up! I'm not a sewer, so I bought a sports bra made out of nylon/spandex. I cut 2 holes over each nipple (fairly small, but large enough to squeeze the horn through) and voila! Hands-free pumping. I used the same sports bra for 9 months while I pumped at work for ds1 and I'm doing the same thing again at work when pumping for ds2. So, I can enjoy reading a book while pumping.

Honestly though, I've never tried pumping in the car while driving. I would totally try it (if I really needed to), but I don't have a commute to work thankfully.

It would be easy to put t-shirt on with slits cut in them so you could be adequately dressed while do it too.
That's pretty clever.
I've seen a few different "hands-free" mechanisms available on the internet, including one from Medela...but of course you have to buy their nursing bras then.


Thanks for the info!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think I might have an accident if pumping while driving. Can you imagine what the paramedics would say? Seeing as I work as a Trauma RN, I just don't know if I could relax thinking about what the trauma team would say when they rolled my broken body in - especially if it was the people I have to work with on a daily basis! I usually get there early, so maybe I will try before the day even starts...

Thanks for all the advice. I have been pumping at home to develop a stash. My IRL friend who is a lawyer reminded me that she managed it working 80 hour weeks and having to pump in a bathroom stall wedged on the toilet with the pump in her lap! What we women have to go through to give our children the best nutrition!
 
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