Today is a bottle only day from 9-3 or so... we are working up toward full days. It turns out I don't have enough banked in the freezer to do a full day since I started pumping once a day not for banking but for bottle feeding practice, and the amount I was pumping in the beginning was so small it is taking the output of 3 or 4 pumpings to make one feeding.
So... my strategy (guess there wasn't one) wasn't one. So hear me people of the pump-- before you do the pump/bottle only transition as if you are at work again, make sure you bank more than a day's worth so you can make the transition AND have some left over for emergencies. Or you can do the transition on formula.
A confession: I am hating it. The pumping is a little persnickety-- got a GREAT double pump (Medela Freestyle) on super sale. Used cones that were too small for the first month. Got bigger cones and felt a little better. If the flanges are not exactly right, there is no suction which is evil and you have to take it apart and reassemble. I was pumping in the morning, Doug offered a bottle to Della, then I would finish by nursing for a while-- this was a great bridge for both of us-- feeding via bottle then soothing via nursing for both baby and mom. Then we moved to bottles and no soothing in the morning feeding. And today, bottles, no soothing, and I hate not nursing. I miss feeding her. Snuggling. I hate what it means (to me at this time) which is work is about to begin again.
Two weeks from today I start back at work. I am not sure how many days a week or if I will have a job at all. But. But I am thinking about options that support my/our highest and best, trying to imagine balancing our very real need for financial income with my very real need to not be drained emotionally and with my consuming desire for more time with Della. And I might get laid off anyway. So. I am just not enjoying this.
In fairness, I have a pre-existing hate relationship with pumping because of my experience in the hospital (no milk at all) then at home trying to increase my supply. It made me feel like a failure to see so little milk (or no milk) in those bottles after pumping. God. I hate it. It made me feel like I was failing at One More Thing. Damn IF sets us up for this incremental self (esteem) destruction. Everything that does not work easily or well or at all feels so symbolic. Gah. Add baby screaming while feeding at the breast and not screaming at all while taking the bottle and.... yeah.
Now taking fenugreek and blessed thistle, drinking mother's milk tea. reading the book Making More Milk which is excellent but hard to read (It should have caveats like: THIS IS REALLY HARD, and THIS IS TEMPORARY).
For all of you who have fought your way through to your own conclusion about this thorny issue, I hear you. This is one of the thorniest.