Keep Calm and Come Back
Stop watching it. I see you over there, watching your boobs being pumped. You've gotta stop. Seriously...Stop.
Take it from me. I know you're scared. I know it's worrisome, but it will all be okay.
For those of you who have any experience with pumping, seeing how much milk you actually produce can be absolutely frightening. Whether its that you pump too much or not enough, it's still scary!
For me, it had started to be a question of whether or not I could keep up with the little guy. There are so many factors that affect your supply when pumping. The number one issue is stressing about about it! Why did I tell you to stop looking at yourself while you pump? For that very reason.
Watching, stressing, waiting, timing, being premenstrual, baby growth spurts, time of day, and the list goes on. All of these things can contribute to a temporary decrease in production.
The two most important thing to remember is that your milk and supply change so frequently based on babies needs. There most likely isnt anything wrong at all! Its all because of that bundle of joys demand or essentials during that current time. Even more important, baby always gets more milk while nursing than you'll ever pump.
Also keep in mind that your milk supply is usually 3-4 days behind in memory. For instance, on Saturday mornings, I go to fitness class with my friend. Its very easy to get side tracked and I had waited many hours later to pump instead of my normal 11 AM time. So I had only pumped twice total that day. By Wednesday I thought I was drying up! Freaking out and stressing, I ran around drinking mothers milk tea and eating all those helping milk producers: oats, chia seed, brewers yeast, fenugreek, yams. I pumped myself for hours and hours.
But then I reminded myself of the rules I had just gone over with you: stop stressing, stop watching, and stop waiting for milk to pour out like a watering hose. Just keep calm and come back to pumping later.
For a few days it continued to dwindle, but by Saturday, I was back to my normal supply.
Breastfeeding is challenging in itself, but pumping is a whole other level of stress. It takes determination, calmness, faithfullness, and selflessness. But it doesnt have to be as hard as we make it.