Tips on getting a freezer stash of BM for when I return to work(6 Posts)
My son is currently 4 months and I will be going back to work 3 days in Oct.
I feed on demand and I'm now sure how to go about getting a couple of sessions in a week of expressing so I can build up a bit of a freezer stash before going back to work.
I've only expressed a handful of times and the most I've got from one session is 4 oz often its less than that.
I presume as my son will be 7 months by then he will only need a couple of feeds in the day. I'm planning on BLW too at 6months.
The easiest way is to keep a wide necked bottle in the fridge - well two actually. After each feed, sit down and hand express into the bottle. Then the next time, do it into the other bottle, next time, tip one milk into the other, and express into empty and so on. Once you have 4oz of milk, put it into a EBM freezer bag, lie it flat in a plastic box (otherwise the corners get bumped and they leak when defrosted) and freeze.
You'll build up a stash really quickly like that for the days when you can't express at work for some reason, someone tips your milk down the sink, or you leave it at home.
I wouldn't stress too much about building up a supply. Expressing will be much easier once you go back to work as you will be missing feeds and so have more milk available.
If you do want to build up a stock then I'd wait until you start weaning and then when he starts reducing his milk intake then express this "surplus" milk. This way you won't be asking your body to start produce more milk just for the expressing.
Do you know that he is ok with a bottle?
oh and 4oz sounds pretty good if you are also feeding him.
disclaimer - am no expert but expressed for both my boys (I went back to work at 6 months both times)
Yes, you can do it! But I think you may need to make time to do the expressing every day so that you and your body get into the habit. 4 oz is a very good amount to express, you must be pleased!!!!
I've done the stash thing twice now. First time I started expressing a little bit from when DD1 was approx 4 weeks, but really started building up a supply from about 4-5 months. At about 7 months I replaced one bf a day with an express since she dropped a bf. I did a similar thing for DD2, with both girls I returned to work - 4 days a week from 7.5 months, both only ever had b milk.
I used a medela mini electric pump (I could walk around with it while I expressed)
I used Lansinoh or Boots milk bags
I froze in roughly 50-60ml sized amounts I didn't know what amounts I would need to defrost in and didn't want to defrost and waste bigger amounts.
I banned anyone else from using that section of the feezer :-).
I also froze the bags flat in plastic box - less likely to break and they defrost easily if flat frozen!
Might be good if you try a few methods of expressing and see which you get on with best.
If you get into the swing of it and see how much you can get a day then if you do the maths then you will be able to work out whether you have plenty by the time you go back to work but remember that even from Oct you continue to express on the days you're not working and possibly on the days when you are!
I found it all a bit of a hassle to be honest, but I was pleased to have done it.
Just wanted to add that if you are going with BLW then it may be a while before he drops any feeds as it takes them a while to really eat rather than just suck on stuff! It's fab though, check out the BLW thread in weaning.
wideawakemum, i know i am researching this very early as dc2 hasn't even arrived yet but i have time on my hands and have been thinking about when i do stop bf but would still like dc to have breast milk. im quite impressed that you never had to use formula. Do you mind me asking just how much milk you ended up with in the freezer. DH is saying he thinks we need to buy a spare freezer for the garage just for the milk im planning on expressing. Also do you know how long bm can be frozen for?
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