Wednesday, February 3, 2010

What no one told me: MILK

Good Morning new moms! Or people who want to be a mom. If neither of those applies to you, you may find the following post disgusting, so don’t read it.

I wish someone would have told me about ‘let down’ or ‘milk coming in’. Now, in the hospital, the nurses all asked if I was going to breast feed and I said yes. I was informed my milk would come in soon, within 4 to 5 days. So that made milk coming in sound like a one time thing.

So that first time is a beast, I thought I was dying of the flu. I had hot flashes and cold sweats. (Note to moms not planning on breast feeding, your milk still comes in. Biology doesn’t listen to personal choices.)

After I got over the initial shock of what it felt like, we did get into some kind of a routine. I am very lucky that starting at about 5 weeks, Elle slept for 4 or 5 hours a night. I am even luckier that by 7 weeks we were up to 7 or 8 hours of sleep.

The down side to a full night’s rest is that I often wake up in a puddle of my own milk. New mommies, buy nursing pads. These are my favorite by Lansinoh, but many other companies make them, including Medela, Gerber and Playtex. In a pinch, a few washcloths tucked in your bra will work, but is kind of bunchy.

Now, we are really into a routine. After Elle’s 10:00 pm feeding, I pump out everything that is left. I use a Medela "Pump in Style" double pump to make it go quicker. I can then sleep with reasonable certainty that I won’t foul the bed with dairy products.

A last weird note about biology. I can tell when she is hungry because her cry or whine or grunt makes my milk come in. It is like a weird bond. Also very weird, if I hear another baby wailing…there is a good chance the milk will come then. So wear those nursing pads out of the house, unless you want people to talk about you and the big damp spots on your boobies.


  1. Some great advice from other moms came to my email:

    When the milk comes in when you don't want it to, you can apply direct pressure to the front... remember, if you are in a public place, I suggest going to the bathroom or something...unless you want people to talk about you!

    Also, get a good TIGHT bra. That alleviates some of the discomfort.

    All suggestions are welcome, this is tough stuff.

  2. You're hilarious! Fortunately, I had great lactation nurses on-hand at the hospital, so they were very informative on what to expect, and how to handle it. :)

    My husband finds it utterly (ha! no pun intended there...) hilarious that I can just be sitting on the couch and will find that I'm dripping. Sure, funny thing first time, Honey... not so much on day 5. But, there's nothing you can do about it!

    I love nursing, but I can tell you I never thought there'd be such a dramatic difference between baby 1 and baby 2. :) Nurse as long as you can! It is a very special bond, and I love having that with our children.

    By the way, if you're interested, our blog is Feel free to check it out!