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Old 07-06-2013, 04:08 PM   #1
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Pumping for NICU baby

Hi I don't really need help, I just need to vent. I have IGT which means MAJOR supply issues for me. I have spent the past 4 years mentally and emotionally and physically preparing for how to tackle it better the next time. I read books, bought supplies while pregnant (supplements, SNS, etc) I was so ready! Then I got placenta previa, had to deliver by c/s 3 weeks early to avoid going into labor, my poor little guy just wasn't quite ready and he's in the NICU. Now I have to resort to the very thing I needed to avoid this time, exclusively pumping. It's the death of my already horribly sadly low supply. I can hold my baby once a day, but he can't nurse at all yet. I am pumping every two hours next to him so I can look at him. I'm taking supplements, drinking tons of water. I was very happy when my milk came in days sooner than last time (day 3.5 instead of day 6) but I made less than last time and instead of lasting 2 days, it's started tanking the very same day it came in. I started with drops, then to a few ml, up to 3/4 oz at the most and now I'm down to 10 ml already.
Like I said, I'm not looking for advice, I'm working with LCs and doing the best I can handle while recovering from a c/s, staying as a boarder at the hospital with baby in the NICU, little girl at home I need to spend time with too, and I am just super sad because I at least want my milk to last long enough to try nursing him just ONCE before it's gone but don't know when he'll be ready to try. Just feeling so down about how hard this is. To work my butt off like crazy to make so little and then lose it so fast. I hate the pump so much but just keep going because it's the only thing I can do right now...

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Old 07-06-2013, 05:15 PM   #2
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

I can only imagine how frustrated you must be I'm so sorry you have to struggle with this. You are amazingly determined though, hang in there mama.
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Old 07-06-2013, 05:30 PM   #3
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

Hang in there mama! Your baby should be ready to nurse more soon, so hopefully between the kangaroo care and the pumping, your milk will come in enough for you to nurse him in a little while. Just remind yourself that every drop you can pump for him is a precious gift, no matter how little it might seem to you.
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Old 07-06-2013, 10:38 PM   #4
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

Thanks mamas... I had a good cry with the hubs tonight and also cried with my baby's nurse. I know he's been benefitting from what I've been giving him, so I'm trying to focus on that. I also have 2 very amazing friends who are pumping milk to donate to me. There is already a nice stash in my freezer for when we get home. But there's just something about providing the milk yourself, when it feels like that's about all you can provide. I'm sure I'll be fine with everything once we're home and I can focus on all the other things I can do as his mama. Right now I just feel so helpless and then my milk supply tanking makes me feel like a failure.
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Old 07-07-2013, 10:56 AM   #5
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

Give yourself a little time. Don't forget you're recovering from surgery and the hormones of pregnancy/birth. You're going to be a great mama for him, and you'll give him everything he needs. Go ahead and cry if you need to, but don't beat yourself up. You're doing a great job.
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Old 07-07-2013, 03:12 PM   #6
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

It is normal to have breakdowns in the NICU. Even when you know everything will be okay. NO one likes being there.

I hope you are able to go home with your little one soon!
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:03 PM   #7
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

Thanks mamas. He's improving a lot so I'm very thankful for that. My milk is down to just drops and he's still not ready to nurse, but I have been able to let him nuzzle and explore and it's been super cute. He smells my nipples and then licks them. So adorable. Looking like there won't be a real nursing relationship, but I do have an SNS so hoping to maybe use that a bit when he's ready.
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Old 07-21-2013, 02:44 PM   #8
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

Don't give up just yet, but try not no stress either. I had twins in the nicu I was pumping for so I know how you feel. We ended up getting them to nurse by using an sns or a syringe to get the babies to latch and one used a nipple shield for a month. I have good milk production, but it too tanks with a pump vs nursing. If you are up for it, see what happens once he is able to nurse. And if it doesn't happen, there is so much more to being a great mama than nursing, you are NOT a failure! And good for you using donated milk, lots of mamas are willing to do that, but you are going that extra amazing step for him. And HUGS! NICU time is hard1
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Old 07-27-2013, 08:50 AM   #9
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

Oh my gosh! This is my exact story! I know exactly how you feel! Hugs to you! You are doing an amazing job!


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Originally Posted by ottomamma View Post
Thanks mamas. He's improving a lot so I'm very thankful for that. My milk is down to just drops and he's still not ready to nurse, but I have been able to let him nuzzle and explore and it's been super cute. He smells my nipples and then licks them. So adorable. Looking like there won't be a real nursing relationship, but I do have an SNS so hoping to maybe use that a bit when he's ready.
This is so cute! Good luck with the SNS!
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Old 07-27-2013, 10:00 AM   #10
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Re: Pumping for NICU baby

I'm so sorry you're having so much difficulty.
I hope your baby will be home soon

Last edited by NewMommy6111; 07-27-2013 at 10:01 AM. Reason: typo
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