Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Pumping at work - Lessons Learned

Haha such a scientist. Let's have a look back and figure out some lessons learned Sarah.


I returned to work when Sophie was four and a half months. So she went from one bottle of expressed milk and five or six boob feeds a day to all bottle feeds (unless she woke during the night). I had a pretty dramatic (if I say so myself) loss of two months supply of frozen breast milk the week before I went back to work, so I had lots of pumping to do.

My tips for gettin' it done.

First of all. Make sure you have pumped before. Don't start your first pump at work. That would be a disaster. Be comfortable with your pump and your ability to do the pumping.

Dress appropriately - do you want to strip down completely? If not, then you gotta make sure your boobs are accessible.

Bring some wipes or cloths - you never know when these will come in handy.

Bring a towel - it is good to have it in your lap. Catches any drips. Saves you from worrying if you smell like milk later.

Bring a book - or your phone. Its pretty boring.

Videos - I spent ages watching videos of Sophie on my phone. It makes the time go quicker, helps with milk let down, and makes you smile.

Figure things out first - Is there a room to use at your work? Do you need to schedule it? Do you need "permission"? We are lucky enough to have a lactation room at work, but I didn't know who to contact about getting a key or about booking it. By the time I got into it, I was about to burst. Also, know your rights. It can be really stressful worrying about the time it takes. This can negatively impact your milk supply. Contact your HR rep and know whats up.
Have you used the storage bags or bottles before? I took my collection bags out the night before I went back to work and there was some plastic connector thing I had to figure out. Glad I did that at home.

Hands free pumping - Do you have a pump that you can use hands free? Some of them say they are, but actually need a bra or something else to make it hands free. I use a super cute little bandeau thing that the funnels pop into. (And it has polka dots on it, totally important haha).

EAT EAT EAT - pumping plus full time work is TIRING. Dude. It is so tiring. You gotta keep the calories up. I have some containers with nuts and dried fruit in them for nibbling as I go.

Drink lots of water - I know they say that everywhere. But it really is true. When we flew to Melbourne I didn't drink a lot on the flight so that I didn't have to get up to pee. But that night - I had NO milk. I mean NO milk. So keep drinking ladies.

Lactation cookies or balls - my milk supply dropped significantly when I headed back to work. So I ate lots of lactation supplements.

Plan - I know I am an over-planner. But you returning to work is a big step for you and for babe. I didn't want to make a bunch of changes for Sophie at once. Rob had been bottle feeding her once a day since she was about 8 weeks, so we knew she could take a bottle, which was a good start. The week before I went back to work, we made all of her feeds bottle feeds so she would get a little more used to that being the norm while I was still around.

 And... for the thing we all love to look at..
Whats in my pumping bag?


  1. I love these kinds of posts! And what a huge undertaking! Go you!!

    1. Thanks hun. It is pretty odd pumping away and hearing people talk outside the door lol


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