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Zoe Raymond|Fitness & Yoga|Beauty & Fashion

Breastfeeding Mama Heading Back To Work!

Countdown to back-to-work: 7 DAYS!


So I've been trying to catch up on sleep, spend more time with Arielle - sometimes just staring at her? And I've been working on this article when countdown was at 9 days. Literally sacrificed sleep to rush this post out! Despite the close countdown, I've decided to do another post because I feel thankful that some of my posts have been beneficial to mothers. Be it new or experienced mothers, or mothers-to-be. I feel grateful to the handful who wrote to me to thank me.

Here are 3 who shared that they benefited from my sharing.





And this time, the topic was decided by you guys! I did a Poll over Instagram stories, asking you to choose which topic you would prefer me to share about. The topics were either:


  1. How To Keep Trim And Fit While At Home With A Baby
  2. Things To Prepare If You Are A Breastfeeding Mama Going Back To Work!






Trim and fit vs breastfeeding - Breastfeeding won!

Whether you are a BF-ing mama or not! There are just so many things to prepare, isn't it? Emotionally, physically, logistically.

For starters.

  1. Prepare yourself
  2. The caregiver
  3. The boss

1. PREPARE YOURSELF

So for myself, I think the most important item would be the breast pump. To continue Breastfeeding (and working), it's important to have a breast pump that works well - effective and efficient. I started trying a new portable breast pump which I intend to bring to office about 2 weeks before. I also got ready the other necessities (will share it in the next post).

2. THE CAREGIVER

As for the caregiver and Arielle, I made sure she is fed from the bottle at least twice a day. She has been having her moods - taking the bottle sometimes and rejected it at other times, so I am glad we started 3 weeks before!

Alvin will always feed her when she gets home

We hired our helper based on the fact that she's experienced with children (she had 5 sons zomg!) and she has been with us since Day 1 of confinement. She has been learning aside me with the confinement nanny so she has been with Arielle just as long as I have been.

3.  THE BOSS

Lastly, work with the boss ahead of time to tell them of our pumping schedules. So what I did was I sent a WhatsApp message to my boss 2 weeks prior to going back to get his support. I'm glad he's very supportive and understanding.


So expanding on #1 Prepare Yourself:

I've also opened up my new Freemie Liberty Hands Free Breast Pump which I got from Mothercare. You can use these cups with the Freemie Liberty pump or with another electric breast pump. In a nutshell, Freemie allows you on pump on the go. You just slot the milk collection cups into your bras, connect it through the tubings to your breast pump and tadah! I also heard that the Freemie Liberty is quieter and some mothers actually pump in their meetings!


When I first posted about on Instagram stories, many mothers came back to say that they are happy users and then there were those who asked me to do a review on it!



I decided to try it 9 days before going back to work. It initially seemed complicated because there were so many parts! But actually after removed the plastics, laid them out nicely, tidied them up, instruction manuals one side, products one side, it wasn't all that difficult. There are 2 sets of cups in size 25mm and 28mm funnel sizes and 1 extra valve.






To simplify the instruction manuals:

Boil the plastic cups for 10 minutes to sterilize.
Hot water sterilize the rest of the parts, which are all the rubber parts like valves, connector, tubing. It says do not steam sterilize as it will cause them to spoil faster.
Charge the electric motor (Micro USB port so you can plug it into your office computer too).


The first time I used, I used it for fun after I latched Arielle for 7 minutes on the right boob while using Haakaa on the left (60ml collection). The collection from the Freemie after 3-5 minutes was 50ml. Alvin and I were playing with the settings and he helped me set 3 customizable memory settings - 1 fast & furious (LOL) for stimulation, 1 slow but hard, and 1 slow and soft.

There are 10 suction power and 11 speed settings. Very importantly, there is a countdown timer so that you don't have to constantly keep an eye on the clock or pump. Each cup can collect up to 8 ounces which is 236ml!



Decided to try the Freemie for the second time when Arielle is being bottle-fed. As I'm heading back to work, we have been giving her EBM with the help of my helper. This is to ensure she is used to the bottle. This is very common for babies who are fed on demand, they are too used to the breasts that they reject the bottles. I've heard of babies who reject the bottle when the mama went back to work and only really drank when mama is home to latch!





Collection from the Freemie - both sides combined was 230ml.





Pros:

  1. The freemie is very light, and easy to bring around.
  2. You can pump on-the-go, in meetings or even if you are walking about because the pump fits into your handbag, or you can clip it to your clothes. As long as you are upright and not lying down, the cups will collect your liquid gold well!
  3. The Liberty is quiet, I almost can't hear the motor. Only if you are near enough to me, you can hear the soft motor and milk flowing into the cups.


Cons:

  1. The Liberty is definitely not as strong as the Spectra S1. It really not fair to compare as well, since S1 is a hospital grade pump.
  2. Collection is not as fast. Comparison with S1 which took 10 minutes, I took twice the time for Freemie. If your pump time is a concern, you can consider using a stronger pump (S9 maybe?) with your freemie cups. You still get to enjoy the convenience of Freemie.


I will be doing another post shortly about the other things to prepare for breastfeeding mamas going back to work! Wait up for it please!



Lastly, all the best to all breastfeeding mamas who are going back to work. May our babies' sleeping schedules be good and so we can get more sleep! And kudos to breastfeeding mamas who are already back to work and been surviving on lack of sleep! Mothers are basically part of a scientific experiment that sleep is not a critical part of human life. Let's hang in there, fellow MOMbies! The nights are long, but the years short.

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