There is so much to consider being a new mom, especially to twins. Am I going to give nursing a try? Would it be easier just to formula feed? What’s best for my baby? The truth is, we don’t really have the answer until our littles are in our arms. I thought my mind was made up from the day I found out I was pregnant that I would strictly nurse. Well, once the babies were born, I was very fortunate to be successful with nourishing both babies by BFing. It was exhausting as our nurse would bring one of the babies in throughout the night every 20 minutes or so to feed. Each night in the hospital I averaged about 2 hours of sleep and this was with the help of our amazing nurses. I was already stressing myself out about how this was going to work long term once we went home.
Fast forward two weeks and I was still nursing and sometimes supplementing with pumped milk. Between nursing and pumping I felt like that was all I was doing, day and night. It really starting getting me down and I dreaded the thought of another feeding session. I was feeling so guilty as I wanted it to be a bonding time with the babies. It was then that I knew something needed to change.
I was and still am determined to give my babies breast milk for as long as possible, so long as I feel comfortable and willing to do so. As a mom, your feelings are important too and how to feed your baby shouldn’t be at the top of your stressor list. This is something I still struggle with myself but I’m getting better.
After getting discouraged with nursing non-stop I started pumping more and more, eventually to the point where I only nurse occasionally. I am happy to say that after 4 months of exclusively pumping (I only nurse about 1 time every couple of weeks if I’m really missing the bonding and closeness with my babes) I’ve been able to keep my supply up enough for both babies! We do supplement one bottle of formula before bed as this helps them sleep better. I plan to keep pumping until they are at least 6 months and depending on how I feel then, I may continue until 9 or 12 months. I know there are a lot of misconceptions about exclusive pumping, a decrease in supply being one of them. While a baby will drain your breast better than a pump, the pump is still plenty efficient.
If you’re a new mom battling the breastfeeding blues like I was, please know that exclusive pumping IS an option! While not as intimate, you still bond with your baby and your hubby can help too which is an added bonus, especially at 3 am!