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My nineteen month old weaned on Christmas Eve. I recently had surgery, my supply tanked, and she was not happy with that! It is bittersweet to come to an end of that relationship, a journey full of mostly struggles from my little one being born at 34 weeks, seven weeks of triple feeding, tongue and lip tie, poor latch, nipple shield for 7 months, oversupply, and so on and so on. Not to mention the adverse impact this had on my own health. Through all this, my sweet girl thrived and grew on breast milk, and we were able to donate over 2,000 ounces of breast milk to over 11 babies!
Since the age difference between my last two kiddos is over 8 years, a lot of products have changed. Luckily, as a midwife, I sometimes hear of new products from my clients along the way. Here are a few breastfeeding products that I loved on our nineteen month journey.
Silicone Breast Pump
Where has this been all our breastfeeding lives? My preemie spent 6 days in the NICU, and I got my first opportunity to use my silicone breast pump five days after she was born when my milk was finally coming in (I experienced a massive postpartum hemorrhage which caused a delay in my milk coming in.), and every NICU nurse and lactation consultant wanted to see me use it. The silicone breast pump is incredible. You can be nursing your baby on one side, and suction the silicone pump on the other. I would easily get 2-3 ounces per nursing from this pump. The Naturebond pump was personally my favorite.
Spectra Rechargeable Breast Pump
For a few years, I heard my clients rave about the Spectra when chatting about breast pump options. When I had my boys, Medela was considered the best, but things had taken a shift according to things my clients had to say. When I was pregnant, it was a no brainer that I was going to purchase the Spectra for my pumping needs. I expected to be using my pumps when at births or away for an extended amount of time because of work. When my baby came at 34 weeks, triple feeding was a necessary component. I pumped 8 times a day for seven straight weeks, then 4 times a day for several weeks. My baby was 7 months old before I was able to stop daily pumping. The Spectra made the job so much easier with the awesome rechargeable battery component. I could easily pump for a couple of days before I would need to charge the pump again, and could pump anywhere that was comfortable for me. The pump is super quiet compared to standard pumps, and the night light feature was a great bonus for night time pumping.
Simple Wishes Pumping Bra
I was convinced that I would never find an actual pump bra that would work for my plus size body, so i did not put much effort into searching for one. I had a dear repeat client deliver a few weeks after I did that insisted her pump bra would fit me, and wanted me to try hers on. Low and behold it actually fit! This bra was very comfortable, and was perfect for keeping the flanges in place, so I could be hands free for breast compressions while pumping.
My dear IBCLC friend, Leah, of Bay Area Breastfeeding and Education came to see us when my baby was two weeks old. She introduced me to the Pumpin’ Pals flanges, and they were such a game changer for my pumping times. I have pendulous breasts, and the design of these flanges is perfect for those of us with that breast shape as there is dramatically less discomfort with pumping with this design. If using the Spectra, you can still us this flanges using a hack with medela parts that can be purchased on amazon.
These four products made a difference in my breastfeeding relationship, and I hope they make a great difference in yours as well.