Sunday, July 8, 2012
I thought I'd be a little emotional about this decision, but I'm actually really excited. I've exclusively fed Linna breast milk (by pumping and bottle feeding) for 11 months! She hasn't had to have formula, which was a goal of mine from the day she was born. There have been so many times I've wanted to throw in the towel and just quit pumping. A mom has her vices (having a cocktail or four, etc.), and when you really have to take care of yourself while you're breastfeeding, it's tough. But knowing that breast milk is the best thing for my baby (and it's FREE), made the past 11 months of pumping worth it.
When Linna was a newborn, I was pumping every three hours, and I was able to store/freeze a LOT of milk. When she was about five months old, I started getting lazy, only pumping three to five times a day... sometimes less. My milk supply drastically decreased and I had to start drinking a supplement called Zija to bring my supply back. Since I'm nearing the end of my year committment to breast feeding, I stopped taking Zija and I'm just letting my body produce whatever amount of milk it can produce on its own. Lately I've been pumping four to five times a day and I get about 12 ounces of milk.
I'm simply tired of being tied to the pump. I want to be able to do things without wondering when and where I'm going to pump next. I've pumped behind the wheel of my vehicle, in bathrooms, etc. So today, I've decided to pump only when I want to. If I want to pump once a day... so be it. If I want to pump six times a day... great! Between the amount of milk I'm currently pumping and the milk I have frozen, I'll have enough to get Linna to a year on exclusively breast milk. She's also drinking water, orange juice, and smoothies (yogurt, OJ, and ice) out of her sippy cup. Linna gets about 4 oz. of breast milk from her bottle in the morning after breakfast, and an 8 oz. bottle before bed. We just recently "eliminated" her afternoon bottle, in hopes of getting her off the bottle by one year!
My husband and I are going to Chicago at the end of July for five days (leaving the baby with my parents and in-laws), and I want to be comfortable pumping once a day if I decide to. My husband and I want to be able to enjoy the city, and not have to worry about getting back to the hotel so I can pump. I plan to be completely done pumping by Linna's first birthday.
So that's that. I'm no longer "tied" to my pump. Decision like this are something every mom needs to figure out for herself. I feel so proud of myself to have made it this far, and I know that this is the right decision for me and my baby!