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Yeah, pump it up! If you're a child of the 80's like me (yes I'm a nerd, and a music nerd)- than this might be the first song that comes to mind and it's totally okay if you sing along:
But I wasn't really talking about that type of pumping it up- I'm talking about the working mom! The mom who's gotta nurse her baby even though she works 8-5, kind of pump-it-up. If you don't nurse, or have boobs, you can change the channel right about now. :)
All my talk of baby led weaning (#BLW) has made a bunch of people quite curious about my breastfeeding - if I do or don't do it, if I do it too much (and hence it's the reason why I have a chubby - though she's 90th percentile and quite happy- baby), and how it factors in to the blw techniques and habits.
Yes, Bambina was exclusively on breastmilk until just a few weeks ago, and is now enjoying small doses of whole foods but hasn't changed her nursing habits one bit. Some people swear it's the introduction of actual foods that causes sleeping through the night (STTN), but I feel like it's a combination of the active, mobile, and hungry characteristics of a 6 month old infant. But I feel like a secret agent most of the time, because I work 40 hrs. a week and not everyone I work with knows I have an infant and that I'm a La Leche League supporter. And that I can pump almost anywhere (oh, and I have). Secret agents are cool, right? And for some close people, it's not so secret, but hey- every agent's (i.e. mom's) mission can be different. Here's my gear:
All black backpack, discreet, and very secret-agent-y, right? Maybe I should wear my sunglasses inside more often to complete the look. I bring all this up, because I get questions from random people- not just my homies- sometimes complete strangers.
While I'm at work, Bambina is at her happy home daycare and takes a bottle and is a super happy camper about it. Bottles and our home don't work. She totally knows even if I'm not physically "in the house" that she doesn't need bottles at home. That part sucks for the husband, but I don't mind planning my schedule (In my attempt to be an awesome multi-tasker most days) around her napping and eating routine. I was a full time working pumper a few years ago when Sillyboy was an infant- and things (both in products and legalities) have improved quite a bit and I'm thankful.
I'm pretty brand loyal, and am not the type to buy ten types of bottles and five different pacifiers just to find one Bambina will love. I get one that works for both of us and that's it. I stick with Medela and Playtex; they've both been certified BPA free and have upgraded their styles and convenient options. My backpack stores everything I might need.
I always include my portable power cord with batteries in a baggy. Hey, it only takes one battery to explode and wreak havoc on everything it touches, so in the baggy they travel. I have the regular power cord, my manual, connectors/tubing, nursing pads, a burp cloth, manual single-hand pump, zippered icepack, and pop my cellphone and/or a water bottle in the side pockets. Everything I need for a good 8-9 hour work day.
I use the Playtex Drop-Ins bottling system, and after reading many reviews on Amazon.com- one very verbal reviewer actually helped me with my pump/store/freeze method using extra caps and adapters found here. This way, you pump directly into the drop in, pop the lid on, and put the whole thing in the freezer when you get home. Once it's completely frozen, I take it out of the bottle-bottom and pop it in a marked freezer bag. I mark the bottom of each Drop-In using a sharpie, and I'm done! A filled freezer bag then goes to daycare.
The bottle-bottoms don't get sanitized; they can be washed in hot water with regular dishes. I separately wash and microwave-sanitize all the other pump and bottle parts once in the evening and then I'm done.
I save SO much time and energy using the drop-ins (they are disposable but are great for avoiding baby spit ups and air gulping which causes problems all its own). I avoid the double use of the pump bottle (I have extra Medela storage bottles in my pack just in case), by not pouring milk into separate containers at home for freezer storage. And the daycare just has to place the entire Drop-In in a bottle and thaw. No extra washing for them either! It took me having a second kid to perfect this entire rigamarole, but it works and is no longer any stress. Looking back, I think everything with Sillyboy was related to stress, except when we were actually just playing and goofing around.... There, I wanted to share my secret agent momma world with you and hope if you're able and if you're willing, you too can be a working-pumping mom, no stress required.