more »" />

Have Milk, Will Travel

by Meghann on July 14, 2016

WARNING: This is a post about breastfeeding! In this post I will discuss – in great detail! – how I managed to express breastmilk while traveling without my baby. There will be numerous references to pumping, breastmilk, and just making it work. If this offends you in any way please skip this post. You have been warned.

Update: Due to the overwhelming response in the comments, I’ve added time between pumps. Please note that even though I went into “unnecessary detail” with this post (I love detail!), I still only glazed over the whole process. While traveling I generally went 4-5 hrs between pump sessions. 

Well, I did it. I survived my first trip away from Annalynn and I’m happy to report that she nursed the day I left and the day I returned without missing a beat. It was tough, a lot tougher than I thought it would be. Not only was I missing my baby like crazy, but keeping up with a decent pumping schedule and dealing the logistics of getting all of the milk back home were enough to make a person go insane. I definitely learned a lot through the whole experience and will apply that knowledge to the next three work trips (oy!) I have coming up before Annalynn’s first birthday.

Pumping While Traveling

When we first started planning the trip to Oregon, I immediately reached out to my contact and let her know I would be pumping while traveling and need access to a fridge/freezer to store breastmilk. I also sent a follow-up email about a week in advance just to confirm we were all set. She was more than accommodating, confirming I would have access to the fridge/freezer at the house.

Annalynn is in the process of dropping from 4 bottles to 3 bottles at daycare, so in the week leading up to my trip I was actually able to build a mini ready-to-go stash in the fridge thanks to some undrunk bottles. Instead of freezing the extra milk, like I normally would, I just kept everything in the fridge and ready for Derek. I then re-arranged our deep freezer and put the oldest milk on the very top shelf so Derek knew what to grab when I was gone. I set aside about twice of what I thought he would need just in case.

The idea of getting my milk through TSA was probably what gave me the most anxiety before the trip. I’d read personal accounts that ranged anywhere from super-easy to a complete nightmare. I had no idea what to expect, so I printed out a copy of the TSA guidelines of traveling with breastmilk and made sure I was aware of all of my rights.

I knew organization was going to be key, so I narrowed down everything pumping-related to two bags and packed the night before.

Pumping While Traveling

For the first bag I had my Medela Pump In Style Advanced and backpack with:

The second bag was a cooler (aka insulated lunch bag) with:

  • Extra quart-size ziplocs
  • Breastmilk storage bags (I use Target’s Up & Up brand)
  • Sharpie (only the sharpie never made it to Oregon, but the idea was there)

Since I didn’t need the larger cooler/lunchbox for the way out, I packed it in my suitcase with the extra ziplocs and storage baggies. And since the TSA rules are a little fuzzy concerning freezer packs with empty bottles, I took the advice of a comment left on a previous post and filled one of the bottles in my pump bag with a tiny bit of old breast milk.

I had a 5:00am flight, which meant leaving my house at 3:00am (it was as brutal as it sounds!). Since it was still technically nighttime to my body, I opted to wait and pump until I reached Atlanta at 7:00am, when Annalynn would normally nurse in the morning.

Getting through TSA in Tampa was a breeze. I told the agent  I had a breast pump and opened my bag to show him. I also pulled out the cooler and showed him the freezer pack and four bottles. He checked to make sure there was milk and then told me to send everything through the xray machine. Since I didn’t care about the old milk, I had no problem sending it through. I walked through the body scanner and collected my bag without any issues. They didn’t even give my bag a second look after the scanner.

Pumping While Traveling

I went to the restroom to pour out the old milk and washed the bottle. My first flight to Atlanta was short (just over an hour) and I slept the entire way.

Right after we landed in Atlanta I checked Google to see if there was anywhere private to pump in the airport and discovered there was a Mamava portable suite on the other side of the concourse. It was a little out of the way from where I needed to go for my next flight, but I knew it would be worth the extra walk. I’d seen photos of the Mamavas pop up in a few of the mom groups I belong to and was pretty excited to try one myself.

[7:00 am EST: First pump of the day. 12 hrs since last feeding.]

Mamava Pod Atlanta Airport

Mamava Pod Atlanta Airport

Quite simply, the Mamava was amazing. It had a comfortable bench, a little table for the pump, an outlet, and a mirror. I could lock the door from the inside and was very comfortable for the 20 minutes I utilized the space. I really can’t rave about the Mamava enough. There’s an app you can download and get a list of all of their current locations (or this list online). This one was located by gate B5 in the Atlanta Airport, but I know other moms have found them in stadiums, convention centers, government buildings, etc. all over the country! I hope they continue to grow and spread because it really is an amazing thing for moms who need to pump on the go!

Mamava Pod Atlanta Airport

Mamava Pod Atlanta Airport

I finished pumping, wiped everything down with the Medela wipes, then went to board my 5 hour flight to Portland. Due to the length of the flight, I knew I would need to pump again before we landed. After researching the best ways to pump on a plane, I discovered there was really only two ways to go: pumping discreetly at your seat or in the tiny plane bathroom. I’d made it 9 months without pumping in a bathroom and really didn’t want to start now so I opted for the former.

My goal was to grab a window seat, per the recommendation of other traveling moms, but that didn’t work out. Instead I was given an aisle seat and placed next to two larger guys that made me a little nervous. Not one to be shy, I took a risk and asked the lady in the aisle seat next to me if she minded switching seats. I explained to her that I was planning to pump and wasn’t comfortable doing it sitting next to the men. Turns out she was a pediatric nurse and was more than happy to switch, she also complimented my commitment to breastfeeding and raved about all the benefits of breastmilk.

Then, just as I was telling my new friend the story of how I had tried to nab a window seat and failed, the person sitting in the window seat of my new row offered me her window seat. Awesome. We switched and I settled comfortably into the space.

About three hours into the flight I pulled my big shawl over my chest and proceeded to pump. Thankfully the person to my right was fast asleep and none-the-wiser to what was happening. The white-noise of the plane canceled out the swoosh-swoosh of the pump and my Dairy Fairy bra meant I could comfortably hook up to the pump without having to mess with multiple bras. I also used my battery pack so there was no need to hook it up to an outlet. Really, the hardest part was combining the bottles of milk without spilling them, and discreetly wiping everything down at the end. It was really nice to be able to just pump without leaving my chair.

[11:00am EST: Second pump of the day. 4 hours since last session.]

Discreetly pumping on a plane Discreetly pumping on a plane

Once our flight landed, we headed to baggage claim to wait for the rest of our party. I asked the information desk if there was a mother’s room and he was only aware of the family restrooms on the other side of security.  Not wanting to leave my group, we found some empty chairs in a quiet corner and I pulled out my big shawl to pump. It was actually really nice to sit out in the open and catch-up with my friends and not have to hide in a bathroom. Half of them didn’t even realize I was pumping until I started packing up.

[2:00 pm EST/ 11:00 am PST: Third Pump of the day. 3 hrs since last pump session.]

I was hoping to make it to Eugene without pumping again, but we were delayed leaving the airport by an hour. At this point I was out of bottles and had to combine and max out all of my bottles so I could be spared an empty one. I also nabbed the seat in the back of the shuttle and was able to quietly pump during the last stretch of our 3 hour drive to Eugene. Again, the white noise of the shuttle cancelled out the loud pump and I doubt anyone even noticed what I was doing.

[6:00 pm EST/ 3:00 pm PST: Fourth pump of the day. 4 hrs since last pump session.]

Discreetly pumping on a bus

Once we finally made it to the house, one of our gracious hosts showed me where the fridge/freezer were in the house. I transferred the milk to the storage bags, put everything in the lunch bag in the fridge, placed the freezer pack in the freezer, and washed all of the parts in the frat’s kitchen sink. Once everything was washed, I placed it all on towel in my room to dry between uses.

Milk Storage

Since our rooms were so close to all of the activities for the weekend, I was able to leave my pump in the room and would just excuse myself and head back to the house whenever I needed to. It was actually a pretty flawless process. I would pump, bag, wash and join back up with everyone before they even realized I was gone.

The biggest issue I ran into was running out of bags. I had been portioning out the bags as I would at home – in 4 or 5 oz increments – when, really, I should have been maxing out the bags. Thankfully I realized my error early on and was able to ration the last two bags and maxed them out with 10oz each. Next time I would max every bag at 10oz.

When it was time to pack up for my flights back home, I filled a ziploc full of ice for my cooler bag of milk. I should have brought a second freezer pack, but honestly, the bag of ice was fine. I had my main carry-on, pump bag, and my cooler/lunch bag that could easily fit into my main carry-on if I was told to consolidate (I never was).

Traveling with breast milk

[6:00 am PST: First pump of the day. 7 hours since last pump session.]

I pumped before we left the house, so I was good until we made it to Portland. That morning Emily had texted me a photo of a nursing room she had discovered at PDX across from the Stumptown Coffee.

Unfortunately it was on the other side of security and, since we had time to kill, our group decided to eat breakfast before security. At this point I was completely comfortable with just pumping anywhere and asked (for the millionth time :)) if anyone minded if I pumped at the table. They were all okay with it, so I pulled out my shawl and pumped while we were ordering. I also ordered a cup of ice to refill the ice bag in my cooler.

[11:00 am PST: Second pump of the day. 5 hours since last pump session.]

When we did eventually make it through security, I did just as I did the first time and told the TSA I had a pump and breastmilk. Only this time I also requested not to have the milk go through the xray machine. At this point I was told to wait for a female TSA agent. They needed to go through all of my bags, perform a pat down, and test my milk. I thought it would be as simple as them testing my milk for explosive residue, but instead, she shined a light through every bag of milk to make sure there was nothing in it. She did change her gloves before hand, but one-by-one she pulled each bag out and laid it on the table. It was kind of tough to watch my liquid gold manhandled. She told me if it was frozen she wouldn’t have had to go through the bags so thoroughly, but I’m not sure I could have kept all of the milk frozen through 12+ hrs of travel.

The process took a while, but I ended up getting all of my milk back without having any of the bags actually opened and it was a fairly effortless process.

We still had about an hour or so before our flight, so I waited until the last possible minute to get another cup of ice for my cooler, and then just crossed my fingers it would last the entire 4+ hour flight. Every time I asked a bartender for a cup of ice, they were very accommodating and never asked any questions.

I ended up with another aisle seat on my long flight to Atlanta, but scored big time with an empty seat next to me. It was nice to have the extra seat to spread out. When it was time to pump I was able to place my pump on the middle seat, which made it a little easier to navigate. By this point I was a pro at pumping under the shawl and didn’t have any issues. When I was done I wiped everything down with the wipes and put it back under the seat.

[3:00 pm PST/ 6:00pm EST: Third Pump of the day. 4 hours since last pump session.] 

We landed in the T-concourse in Atlanta, and I really lucked out by running into another Mamava suite almost as soon as I stepped off of the plane near T-7. Once again, I took advantage of the comfortable, private space and pumped between flights. Since it was my last time pumping for the trip, I didn’t bother wiping any of the parts and just saved them in the ziploc for when I returned home.

[6:00pm PST/ 9:00 pm EST: Fourth Pump of the day. 3 hours since last pump session.]

Pumping in Mamava Pod

And that was the end of my pumping adventures for the weekend. I was home in time to nurse Annalynn during her 4:00am wake-up and enjoyed the extra baby snuggles.  I missed my girl!

I learned a lot from the trip, and will probably continue to learn over my next three trips. Stay tuned!

 

{ 134 comments… read them below or add one }

1 kathy July 14, 2016 at 9:24 pm

wow, pumping has come a LONG way from 1994. 🙂 my Medela (I could only get one at a hospital) was GIGANTIC and heavy. It was still called a pump in style. 🙂 Great job mama!

Reply

2 Michelle July 14, 2016 at 9:30 pm

Just a possibly stupid question from a never-been mom. Why do you bother saving the breast milk when you are on a trip like this? From what I’ve seen of moms who pump regularly, their freezers are overflowing with breast milk. Would you run out if you didn’t save the milk from these few days?

Reply

3 Lily July 15, 2016 at 11:54 am

Not a stupid question! *Some* women are able to pump and freeze what their baby doesn’t eat each day; others struggle to even get a few ounces (and babies typically consume 25-30oz/day up to 1 year). Many women, myself included, have some milk in the freezer but want to save as much as possible because your supply can drop, or even disappear completely. Saving all the milk you can ensure that your baby will get as much breast milk (and all of its’ benefits) as possible. Many women also donate BM to mothers who are unable to produce enough on their own.

Reply

4 Lily July 15, 2016 at 11:56 am

Not a stupid question! *Some* women are able to pump and freeze what their baby doesn’t eat each day; others struggle to even get a few ounces (and babies typically consume 25-30oz/day up to 1 year). Many women, myself included, have some milk in the freezer but want to save as much as possible because your supply can drop, or even disappear completely. Saving all the milk you can ensure that your baby will get as much breast milk (and all of its’ benefits) as possible. Many women also donate BM to mothers who are unable to produce enough on their own. Plus, pumping is kind of an ordeal. It doesn’t hurt necessarily, but it’s not “fun” in any sense. Tossing BM you’ve worked hard* for? Heck now 🙂

*by “worked hard”, I’m referring to the time spent pumping, washing parts, purchasing new parts, mental energy, etc.

Reply

5 Sasha July 14, 2016 at 10:05 pm

Omg so boring, much unnecessary detail, very navel gazing.

Reply

6 Amanda July 15, 2016 at 11:56 am

Then why did you read it? It said at the beginning there was a lot of detail.

Reply

7 Meagan @ My Life as Mrs July 14, 2016 at 10:17 pm

Thank you so much for sharing! I don’t have kids yet but I love reading your blog and getting ideas for the future. I hope your next few trips go even better than this one! <3
Meagan @ My Life as Mrs recently posted..Summer Running and Sunsets

Reply

8 Shannon July 14, 2016 at 10:23 pm

Thanks for all the info!! I have an almost 3 month old and am heading back to work soon. I plan to pump/breastfeed as long as I can, but am honestly a bit stressed about logistics. How often do you pump and why didn’t you freeze the bags? I’d appreciate any info you’re willing to give out!!
I’m a bit nervous about leaving my 3 month old and want to try and breastfeed as long as I can but really have no clue what I’m doing!! Any advice would be great!

Reply

9 Teresa July 14, 2016 at 10:25 pm

I am 10 days away from having my first baby, and I travel a ton for my job and will start 12 weeks PP, and I just want to honestly say that although these posts are extremely helpful for me, they are also freaking daunting!! I cannot imagine having to step away from my work this often or at every flight and airport pickup… Will I be a terribly selfish mother to switch to formula while I’m working? Holy crap!

Reply

10 Elizabeth July 15, 2016 at 10:38 am

I’m definitely feeling the same. I have a great job where I can pump at my desk as it is private but I definitely think it’ll take some time getting into the groove of things! And no you wouldn’t be selfish! Maybe just see how things go at work and go from there? That’s what I plan on doing 🙂

Reply

11 Alice July 15, 2016 at 10:57 am

NO you will not be a terrible mother! These posts can be a little damaging in that they are NOT completely realistic for most people, and only represent one person’s experience, and the experience of a person whose life revolves the pump. You can do whatever is best for your sanity and your family, and TBH this is overkill. Please don’t let these kinds of posts freak you out!

Reply

12 Katie July 15, 2016 at 12:51 pm

I wouldn’t let these posts freak you out. It’s not as hard or as daunting as she makes it seem. Once your supply is established, it’s okay to miss pumps here and there, too.

Reply

13 Bri July 15, 2016 at 4:10 pm

Obviously every mom’s experience is a bit different, but this recap feels very over-the-top in every way. At no point (even upon just returning to work at 12 weeks) did I ever feel tied to the pump and never once would it have crossed my mind to pump in public/in front of others. So unnecessary. Many variables factor in, but I easily pumped until my daughter was a year old, and I had a very demanding job. Sometimes I missed a session; no big deal. Certainly by 9 months, unless you’re consistently overdoing it, your body will be fine with skipping sessions from time to time (and by “fine” I mean no engorgement and no discernible impact to supply). If it is your goal to pump at work, don’t feel like it needs to be a daunting or all-consuming thing. It honestly becomes NBD for most people by a few months in. Of course, you do what works for you and your baby, which could include formula too. I’m having my second child in a matter of days and am prepared to formula feed her if need be, even though my oldest was BM only – it’s just not a huge deal, IMO. This whole culture around BM/BF obsession is kind of scary. Nutrition is important but there is so much else that goes into determining the health of a baby – providing breastmilk by obsessively pumping is not an indicator of whether you’re a great mom or of the baby’s health. Good luck with delivery and enjoy the time with your new babe!

Reply

14 Teresa July 14, 2016 at 10:29 pm

Haha Shannon- you put it a lot better than I did! Lol but I’m honestly so anxious after reading this post, altho very informative. Lastly tho, for work I always already had my hands full of work stuff in my carry on- now I’m worried about how to add a pump backpack and a cooler into the mix?! Sounds really impossible, and haha bringing the baby with me too? This is why it’s so hard as moms to keep our careers going I guess. Holy moly- overwhelmed!

Reply

15 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:55 am

Look up the Working Moms Who Make Breastfeeding Work group on Facebook. Seriously, it’s an amazing support system that is full of moms who travel weekly for work and have a ton of great advice. Also, download Work. Pump. Repeat. It’s a great book with a ton of info!

Reply

16 Ashley July 15, 2016 at 9:46 am

I found that Facebook group to be absolutely awful TBH. It was just a lot of obsessing over pumping and competing over who could pump more, and really not supportive at all. To each her own, but I definitely wouldn’t recommend that group.

Reply

17 Megan July 15, 2016 at 10:16 am

Agree. That group was obsessive and had a lot of people who didn’t work. I travel frequently by plane for work and did not find that group helpful.

Reply

18 Meghan July 14, 2016 at 10:39 pm

Super helpful! Kudos to you- I am missing a work conference to New Orleans in September when my baby will be 4 months old because the logistics of pumping and storing the milk were way too much for me to figure out. Haha. High five! What nursing shawl do you use? I have a scarf and it’s noce, but the shawl seems to give ample coverage front and back. Thanks!

Reply

19 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:53 am

It’s the Lululemon Vinyasa Scarf! It goes with me EVERYWHERE. http://shop.lululemon.com/p/women-scarves-gloves/Vinyasa-Scarf-II/_/prod4240002

Reply

20 Lauren Schwartz July 19, 2016 at 10:46 am

I have a Covered Goods scarf which may be like what you’re talking about? But I’ve found it covers front and back well!

Reply

21 Megan July 14, 2016 at 10:39 pm

Great post! What a great resource for breastfeeding moms! And a huge bravo to you! I know it’s a ton of work and such a commitment to pump as you travel, and you’re doing great! I’m a breastfeeding mother too so I get excited (and sometimes teary with feelings of solidarity) as I see or hear about other moms putting in so much effort to maintain their breastfeeding relationship with their child! So great job and thanks for providing so many details! I know other moms will find it useful too as we all try to do our best navigating motherhood together!

Reply

22 Marge Pilato July 14, 2016 at 10:40 pm

That is a lot of pumping! Every mom and baby is different, I had a much different experience. I re-started grad school when my baby was 9 months and 2x a week I would be out of the house from 1pm to 10pm. I only used a hand pump once during those hours. I managed to maintain my milk well too, I nursed my kid through 2 years and 3 months. Maybe I was lucky. For your sake, I hope you don’t require such a vigorous schedule in the near future! What you have is certainly a commitment.

Reply

23 Meg July 14, 2016 at 11:08 pm

I don’t understand why you didn’t just pump and dump in order to maintain supply/stay comfortable since you have such a huge freezer stash? Why deal with the hassle of transporting so much milk when you have plenty in storage?

Reply

24 Amy July 15, 2016 at 8:22 am

Or donate! Please, please donate!! I just think it’s an incredible gift that you could give to a mom and baby in need. Now THAT would be a post that people would love to read and couldn’t find fault with! 😉

Reply

25 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:53 am

I worked really hard for that milk. Yes, I could have left it behind, but I would have cried really hard over it.

Reply

26 Amy July 15, 2016 at 9:37 am

I get that, but those babies work really hard for their lives. I’m sorry, that just seems so selfish to me. I’m really disapointed by that reply.

Reply

27 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 9:41 am

I’m sorry my reply was written hastily. What I meant by the reply is that it’s difficult to donate to the NICU on the road because of the application process and how it varies from hospital to hospital. I’d love to just show up with milk and drop it off, but I’m afraid it isn’t that simple. I have a local mom that I plan to donate closer to home as soon as the baby arrives. The mom will be unable to breastfeed so I’ll be donating a large portion of my freezer supply to the mom.

Reply

28 Ashley July 15, 2016 at 9:47 am

That’s awesome! I would love to hear more about the donation process for both hospitals and to other moms.

29 Amy July 15, 2016 at 10:29 am

Good to hear! Thanks for clarifying. For future, you could search local Facebook groups of the cities you’re going to and find moms to donate to rather than hospitals. That would save you the hassle of bringing milk back too!

30 Clare July 15, 2016 at 12:39 pm

Why didn’t you look into HM4HB? If you’re active on other facebook groups, I’m SURE you’ve heard of this. With the gigantic freezer stash you’ve bragged about (multiple times) there was absolutely NO need for you to cart all that milk around. There are so many babies in need out there that you could have donated to without going though a NICU (and to be honest, your response here just shows that you actually did NO research in to legitimately donating. You donate to a milk bank, not a NICU)

31 Cher July 15, 2016 at 10:24 pm

Lol what????? How is it selfish for a mom to keep her own milk for her own baby. ???? Giant stash or not.

32 Samantha July 17, 2016 at 8:14 pm

I know you don’t need anyone telling to ignore comments, but seriously, keeping doing you. I pumped exclusively for 10 months and you better believe I did everything you just described when I was traveling away from my baby. We just ran out of frozen milk at 13 months and I am so happy I was able to provide my milk for her for that long.

33 Lauren Schwartz July 19, 2016 at 10:50 am

That’s very kind of you Meghann and certainly not necessary to even post about your plans for donating. I can’t believe all these comments about how you “should” have donated? That is totally a choice but not a requirement. Sheesh.

34 Maureen July 14, 2016 at 11:09 pm

Great work! Another great place to pump while at airports is the mini-suite rooms–I think they are called Minute Suites. They have one room that is for nursing moms–and will let you use it for free for 30 minutes! I used them at the Philadelphia airport—made it super easy!

Reply

35 Kimberly July 14, 2016 at 11:42 pm

Woohoo! Awesome planning and follow through! That liquid gold is nothing to be wasted. What shawl did you use for your pumpkin sessions? It looks like it covers a lot of area.

Reply

36 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:52 am

It’s the Lululemon Vinyasa Scarf! It goes with me EVERYWHERE. http://shop.lululemon.com/p/women-scarves-gloves/Vinyasa-Scarf-II/_/prod4240002

Reply

37 Elizabeth July 14, 2016 at 11:49 pm

Thanks for the post! I’m due soon and I work full time and I’m determined to continue breastfeeding when I go back to work and I love hearing the details about how it can be done. Why didn’t you want the milk to go through the x-ray ? Never heard of that so I’m curious!

Reply

38 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:48 am

It’s the same reason I opted for a pat down instead of going through the xray machine while expecting. There’s not enough research out there on how the radiation effects the milk.

Reply

39 Julie July 15, 2016 at 12:28 pm

Just a quick FYI re. the “x-ray” machines. They actually use millimeter waves, more like an ultrasound than an X-ray, and don’t have any radiation.

Reply

40 Linda @ The Fitty July 15, 2016 at 6:44 am

I sure wonder why people would get offended by reading about breastfeeding?
Linda @ The Fitty recently posted..My Morning Routine + Nature’s Hollow Giveaway!

Reply

41 Alice July 15, 2016 at 7:06 am

I roll my eyes every time I hear “liquid gold”. And I’m a breastfeeding mother myself, I just find it such a ridiculous term that fuels so much of the “breast versus formula” mommy wars.

Reply

42 Amy July 15, 2016 at 8:19 am

Amen.

Reply

43 Danielle July 15, 2016 at 9:13 am

Preach it.

Reply

44 Amber July 15, 2016 at 7:26 am

Traveling for work is so hard. Those pods look awesome.
Have you played around with decreasing pump frequency- I was honestly super surprised that you needed as many sessions during your travel day. Think how much easier it would be to not pump mid flight. It may not have bothered other passengers but the potential for a spill would have stressed me out so much.

Reply

45 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:45 am

Thank you for your concern. Please note that the post makes time seem more condensed than it actually was. Please see the updates I’ve made to the post.

Reply

46 Clare July 15, 2016 at 12:42 pm

This canned response isn’t actually addressing the question…

You seem SUPER defensive about all of this, and I think there are tons of actual legitimate comments here. Pumping is admittedly stressful and difficult and there are plenty of women here who have successfully worked/travelled/pumped trying to understand why you’re still forcing yourself (yes, forcing) to pump every three hours when your baby is nine months old and only drinking 3 bottles a day at daycare

Reply

47 Ashley July 15, 2016 at 7:29 am

Do you always pump so frequently? This seems like way more frequently than you should need to pump for an older baby, especially if Annalynn is only taking 3 bottles a day. You are going to have a lot of problems with engorgement when you wean if you keep forcing your body to argot ally put out more than it wants/needs to.

Reply

48 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:44 am

My schedule at work is pumping every 3 hours. I went from an oversupply to a “just enougher.” The last two days I’ve produced just enough for the 3 bottles I now send. While traveling I went 3-5 hrs. I’ve updated the post to reflect time between pump sessions.

Reply

49 Emily July 15, 2016 at 7:44 am

I pump for 8 month old twins and still shoot for every 3-4 hours, but that seems so frequent for just one baby that age. Stretching it to 5 hours won’t hurt your supply at this point, and maybe would’ve made it possible to avoid pumping on a plane. Airplanes are filthy!

Reply

50 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:43 am

Thank you for your concern. Please note that the post makes time seem more condensed than it actually was. Please see the updates I’ve made to the post.

Reply

51 Kris July 15, 2016 at 7:48 am

THANK YOU! The time and attention to detail in this post is wonderful! Extremely helpful.

Reply

52 Jen July 15, 2016 at 7:54 am

I am all for breastfeeding and pumping, and think it’s great that you have been sharing your journey. People who don’t want to read about t don’t have to. That being said, I do honestly worry about what’s going on here. I am a Lactation consultant and a postpartum therapist, and this behavior is worrisome. There’s absolutely no reason you need to be pumping this frequently, unless you are either looking to burn calories, or have an anxiety or obsessive disorder that is manifesting itself around breastfeeding/pumping. I really urge you to go talk to someone and dig a little deeper about what’s going on here. I’m so sorry you are so fixated on this, because it indicates that you are struggling. Best of luck to you.

Reply

53 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:43 am

Thank you for your concern. Please note that the post makes time seem more condensed than it actually was. Please see the updates I’ve made to the post.

Reply

54 Tay July 15, 2016 at 10:27 am

I really question the ethics of your comments as a “therapist”. I don’t think it’s appropriate at all to do an armchair analysis of a person based on their blog, especially when specific I posts are meant to give detailed information.

Reply

55 Kathy July 17, 2016 at 10:35 pm

My thoughts as well. “Diagnosing”someone based on a blog post seems irresponsible

Reply

56 Jenn July 15, 2016 at 8:01 am

You included some super helpful info for new moms. Before your upcoming business travel, maybe try stretching out time between sessions? Seems like your supply and freezer stash are very well established, so give yourself a break. I tried to build up a freezer stash and use it all, but my kid self weaned starting at her first birthday.

Reply

57 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:43 am

Thank you for your concern. Please note that the post makes time seem more condensed than it actually was. Please see the updates I’ve made to the post.

Reply

58 Kelly July 15, 2016 at 8:11 am

Yes! I was going to say the same thing. Girl, kudos on your commitment but yes if your baby is 9 months old, you can space out your pumping sessions more!!! Your supply is well established, and you obviously have enough milk so slow down with it! By 9 months, I could go many hour without pumping if needed, and it started to prepare my body for my babies starting to switch over to cows milk and for when they lost interest in nursing a little after a year. Lastly, I feel sad that you work such long hours every week and then travel some on the weekends. I wish you had more time to enjoy that baby..it goes so fast but work trips will always be there. Just my opinion from a mommy with a kid about to go to kindergarten!

Reply

59 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:42 am

Thank you for your concern. Please note that the post makes time seem more condensed than it actually was. Please see the updates I’ve made to the post.

Reply

60 Heather July 15, 2016 at 11:33 am

To Kelly, above– “Lastly, I feel sad that you work such long hours every week and then travel some on the weekends. I wish you had more time to enjoy that baby.” –> way to lay on the working mom guilt. I’m assuming you’re a SAHM? Don’t feel sad for working mothers–being a working mom does NOT make you any less of a mother. It sounds like you might need to find your own identity outside of being a mom. I’m a working mother and nothing makes me sadder than comments like yours.

Reply

61 Kelly July 15, 2016 at 1:35 pm

No, I was lucky enough to find part-time work so I can still work, but have more days at home than just the weekend. Sorry you feel sad by that comment, but that is all I was saying..I feel sad she isn’t able to spend more time with her baby. Like I said, my oldest is about to go to school and I am so, so thankful for every minute I have had with her at home. Your response was defensive and full of assumptions and insults.

Reply

62 Heather July 15, 2016 at 3:52 pm

Still, to tell someone you’re sad they don’t see their baby more isn’t doing them any good-if I were her, it would make me feel guilty. As moms, don’t we have enough guilt as it is?

Reply

63 Natalie July 15, 2016 at 8:12 am

Do you really need to pump as often as you are? Seems over the top. I agree that when (and it will happen) Annalynn weans, or starts to, you will likely have a problem with engorgement, which can lead to mastitis. Having dealt with a few bouts of that myself, I can tell you that it’s no joke when it’s said that breastfeeding is supply and demand. Maybe it’s time to cool it just a bit?

Reply

64 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:42 am

Thank you for your concern. Please note that the post makes time seem more condensed than it actually was. Please see the updates I’ve made to the post.

Reply

65 Danielle July 15, 2016 at 8:14 am

So much judgement in these comments. Did she ask you your opinion on how frequently she should be pumping? No. So why do you all feel the need to get in your little bit? Just read and move on. Or don’t read if the subject bores you. She did give a big warning at the top!

Reply

66 Amy July 15, 2016 at 8:17 am

You’ve said before you have a massive frozen stash. Why not donate your pumped milk to a mama in need in the city you travel to? That way you keep your supply up, don’t have to deal with getting milk through security, and could potentially SAVE a NICU baby’s life!! How incredible would that be!? Milk sharing is one of the most selfless mama acts. I truly hope you consider it.

Reply

67 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:42 am

I’m planning to donate the stash currently in my freezer. I already have a mom that I will be donating to. I’d love to donate to NICU babies, but the application process for donating to the NICU is long and varies by hospital.

Reply

68 Christine July 15, 2016 at 9:33 am

Sounds like the application process to donate to a NICU would make a great blog post….just saying……

Reply

69 Amy July 15, 2016 at 9:39 am

It’s worth the process.

Reply

70 Jenny July 15, 2016 at 12:15 pm

Long and variable doesn’t mean impossible. I have a friend whose baby was born so early he couldn’t digest formula. Donated breastmilk saved his life.

Reply

71 Amy July 15, 2016 at 3:21 pm

I’m looking forward to reading about the donation process to the woman you know! It will be so great for pumping moms to know how to find someone in need and how to get them the milk. When is she due?

Reply

72 Amy July 15, 2016 at 8:25 am

Ps. Kudos to you for leaving your baby! I was offered training at a beach front resort for 5 days for work but my babe will only be a year at that point and I just can’t do it so I turned them down.

Reply

73 CJ July 15, 2016 at 8:29 am

I appreciate that you’re on some kind of mission to martyr yourself for pumping, but there is no reason why you pumped before getting on a plane, during the plane ride, and after getting off, not for a 9 month old baby, especially when you have plenty of milk frozen at home and she’s drinking less breastmilk anyway. You appear to get some sort of fascination with pumping in front of other people and making sure they all know what you’re doing. I breastfed four kids, most of them past the age of 1, so I’m an advocate for breastfeeding, but it seems like you want all kinds of attention for doing something that is designed by nature. We’re feeding our kids, not curing cancer. I’m incredibly concerned about what your mental state is going to be like when Annalynn weans and you won’t be able to pump everywhere for attention.

Reply

74 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 8:40 am

Thank you for your concern. Please note that the post makes time seem more condensed than it actually was. Please see the updates I’ve made to the post.

Reply

75 Danielle July 15, 2016 at 9:19 am

That’s exactly what it read like: “Look at all of the places I pumped and took selfies, just so I could write a blog post!”. By the time my kiddos were this age, they were definitely not nursing every 3 hours. This just feels over the top.

Reply

76 Danielle July 15, 2016 at 9:43 am

My daughter is a week or two younger than Meghann’s. She nurses every 3 hrs. Sometimes more, sometimes less, but on average every 3. Just because YOU had one experience does not make hers wrong or invalid.

Reply

77 CJ July 15, 2016 at 11:01 am

Meghann has made it well known that she has a large amount of milk frozen. It would have been no big deal to pump and dump, just for a weekend trip. Pumping to relieve the pressure, rather than completely emptying her breasts, would not have affected her supply over a couple of days. Having to email someone multiple times to make sure she’d have a fridge/freezer available, toting around bags of milk and being scrutinized at security for it, telling everyone around her on the plane that she was going to pump, pumping in the back of an airport shuttle, that WAS unnecessary if she has a stash in the freezer at home already. I just feel bad that it seems like Meghann places a lot of weight in her identity in pumping, and it’s sort of become this thing where she’s collecting “different” places that she’s pumped. Breastfeeding is a normal, natural way to feed a child, and it’s GREAT that she’s doing it, but it’s not a reason to constantly be looking for extra attention.

Reply

78 Meghann July 15, 2016 at 11:11 am

I’m sorry, but I think you’re the one that is wrong. While away from your baby, you should pump to empty the breasts unless you are trying to wean or correct an oversupply issue. I’m only replying to this, so that someone else doesn’t read this comment and get the wrong message. I’m not a medical advisor, so I would recommend everyone speaking to a professional before making their own informed decision. I’ve worked with an LC locally and am sticking to her advice of pumping every 3-5 hrs when away from the baby until we’re ready to wean. Yes, I could have dumped out all of the milk, but I worked really hard for the milk and it was a personal choice to bring it back home and I stand by that choice. As I’ve mentioned a thousand times, this is a personal blog and I pick and choose what’s written on here. This post was dedicated to pumping while traveling, that’s not to say my life is dedicated to pumping.

79 CJ July 15, 2016 at 4:40 pm

For whatever reason, your website is not allowing me to reply directly to your comment. To clarify what I was saying, if, at worst, you needed to pump to relieve the pressure WHILE TRAVELING (i.e. while on the plane, if you had engorgement issues, for the two days you were traveling) would not have affected your supply. There is simply no reason to pump that frequently while traveling. You manage to make it 12 hours through the night without pumping; you can do that during the day if you are busy. If your child is with you and you are feeding them, that’s one thing, but adding a couple of hours in between pump sessions would NOT have been a big deal (you could always pump to empty when you were at the house you were staying at) and would have meant that you weren’t pumping in an airplane, in a shuttle bus, while sitting at a table eating with your friends, having to ask people “millions” of times if they care if you pump or ask them to change seats on a plane.

At 9 months, when you’ve got a freezer full of milk, I’m sorry you disagree, but I maintain, with anecdotal evidence from the four children that I breastfed personally, along with a couple of working moms who travel who I asked after seeing this post, (along with the other anecdotal evidence that other women have posted), that pumping that often on a weekend trip, was unnecessary and it would not have affected your supply if you spaced out your pumping sessions while doing the actual traveling. Babies go on nursing strikes that last longer than that and most women don’t have supply issues even when they are not pumping.

Your LC was probably talking about you going to work every day, not going on a random weekend trip. And you worked really hard for that milk because you brought all of this stuff with you to pump it out; your body just makes it naturally, because human lactation requires nothing more than giving birth; it’s been happening for thousands of years without this much fanfare. Yes, it’s your personal blog and your personal decisions, but you are also putting it on the internet where people are free to comment on it. If you don’t want comments to the contrary, there’s nothing stopping you from not posting it on a public blog. Future moms may read this and think that they need to inconvenience themselves and others to this level when they have a freezer full of milk at home and an older baby and that’s simply not true.

80 Cher July 15, 2016 at 10:35 pm

CJ – Why do you care so much? Its super weird.

Meghann could very well have decreased her supply over this short trip. I exclusively pumped for 9 months every 3-5 hours except at night when I would go 6-8 until the morning. After, it took only 2 days for my supply to cut by a quarter when I cut out a session. A couple of days lateer I cut out another session and produced only half the milk. For 9 months I pumped all the time because I had to. Luckily, I’m in Canada and mat leave is 1 year. So I could do this usually from the comfort of my own home, but occassionally I did have to drag my pump places that were inconvenient. So I sympathize with this. Its hard. And you’re bully.

81 Madeline July 15, 2016 at 8:45 am

Just wanted to say, as a mom who traveled quite a bit for work while I was still nursing/pumping, I think it’s awesome that you wrote this up. I was SO nervous before my first trip and did so much googling and researching (and was very thankful for the working moms who make breastfeeding work page for all their help) beforehand, so any extra resources that are out there about how NOT scary and possible it all is, is fantastic in my opinion. I was so thankful for understanding colleagues (including my male boss that played it cool while I pumped in the backseat of a car when we were stuck in traffic on a long drive once) and helpful mom resources! I think it’s important to pay that knowledge forward!

Reply

82 Ashley July 15, 2016 at 8:48 am

Thanks for such a detailed post! I had no idea what pumping Mamas have to go through. I admire your dedication to maintain this even when traveling. Also, She’s sooo cute!!

Reply

83 Christine July 15, 2016 at 9:19 am

I think this blog post was very informative for any current mothers of infants, or any future mothers who have been wondering about this. That being said, there are a lot of negative comments, and I have to admit, I thought it was pretty excessive to pump that much as well. However, I do want to say this: you did provide a service by telling us of your experience, regardless of what some readers think of it, and if you did hypothetically have an “obsession” as many people have indicated, I’m fairly certain you know enough people IRL that would express their concern to you.

Reply

84 Elizabeth July 15, 2016 at 10:42 am

Agreed! I just really liked reading about the nitty gritty details of timing, etc since I am due soon and would like to pump at work.

Reply

85 Shannon July 15, 2016 at 9:21 am

Thanks for the post, Meghann! I read it while pumping at work. 😉 I got a little anxious for you when I first started reading because thinking about the logistics of pumping and flying makes me break out in a sweat, ha! Looks like you did an awesome job. I also really appreciate you taking the time to write out all of the details. People who have never attached a machine to their nipples in order to milk themselves don’t and can’t understand how every little detail requires lots of thought and preparation.

Also, I pump every 3 hours for my baby (7.5 months), too. You da mom and you know what’s best! WTF is with these people saying you’re pumping too much, that you should have pumped/dumped, that you should donate (people imploring other people to donate anything makes me ragey), or that you have a fascination with pumping. Who in their effing mind would be fascinated with PUMPING (or even THINK that people could be fascinated with pumping like that’s an actual thing)? I swear all you people need to be medicated.

Anyway, solidarity, mama! You rock!

Reply

86 CJ July 15, 2016 at 11:03 am

Yep, all the rest of us need to be medicated. And people wonder why there are mommy wars.

Reply

87 Melissa July 18, 2016 at 4:57 pm

Everyone else should be medicated? What a mean comment.

Reply

88 Kate July 15, 2016 at 10:15 am

I think that it’s great for women to share their experiences about pumping while traveling! I’m sure that this post is going to help other mamas out in the future. I recently traveled while my LO was 16 months old and not nursing very frequently, but I found that I had to pump a lot more often (for my own comfort) than she would normally nurse because the pump isn’t as efficient as a baby. I also flew through Atlanta and was grateful for that Mamava pod at gate B5!

Reply

89 Tay July 15, 2016 at 10:22 am

I’m not a mom, but I am a full time working woman who travels often and is thinking about having a child, so it’s been fascinating to read about your experience trying to make breastfeeding. The number of overly critical responses to this post really bums me out. Meghann, it’s clear you love your daughter and would go through a lot to provide for her. Kudos to you.

Reply

90 Tay July 15, 2016 at 10:23 am

*trying to make breastfeeding work

Reply

91 Reenie July 15, 2016 at 10:46 am

Goodness…. I could never be a blogger, I would go off on any rude comment.

I’ve read you for years Meghann ~ and I don’t have any kids… but still find your posts interesting.

Keep on being you!!

xo

Reply

92 Elise July 15, 2016 at 10:52 am

A few thoughts:
First, I found your “warning” at the beginning of this post to be incredibly condescending. I know readers have left you comments before about how your breastfeeding posts are excessive and overly detailed, and I wish instead of shooting back with that preface to this post, you could be more understanding of their interests (as your readers, and thus, your audience), especially considering that this blog is a healthy living blog that for many years focused on running and triathlon. I get that breastfeeding is an important part of your life, but I feel as though instead of thoughtfully considering what your readers are telling you, you make it seem like it’s you vs. them.
Second, I am not a mother nor do I plan to become one in the near future (though, someday I do plan to have children.) I have no experience with breastfeeding, but I do know as a young woman that the debate and obsession with breastfeeding is scary. When I read a post like this, I worry that choosing to have children and breastfeed them is a huge time commitment, not to mention requires me to give up so much of my bodily autonomy.
I know your goal is to normalize breastfeeding, which I think is a great goal to have. I also know that breastfeeding is the healthiest way to feed babies. So as a non-breastfeeding woman who will someday have to decide how to feed my own child, I wanted to let you know that posts like these actually dissuade me from trying breastfeeding. Instead of posting about how much you have to pump and how many places you did it, I would like to hear about how it is EASY! How it doesn’t consume your thoughts or how planning to pump while traveling can be simple. Because after reading a post like this, I feel overwhelmed by the prospect of breastfeeding a child.

Reply

93 Laurel July 15, 2016 at 11:09 am

Elise, I agree with you. Like Megann, I also became a mom last year.
I exclusively pumped for my baby. Had I read a post like this pre-pregnancy or while pregnant, I would have been completely freaked out and thought it was something I couldn’t handle.
Everyone’s experience is different, but for me, pumping really was NOT a big deal. Yes, it was tiring to pump in the middle of the night and it was somewhat of a hassle to drag a pump around when traveling, but you know what? It wasn’t that bad. You just do it. I played a lot of Candy Crush while pumping. 🙂 And I knew that if it got to be too much for me, I would switch to formula. NOTHING wrong with formula feeding your baby, especially if you feel like it’s what’s best for mama’s sanity! Just wanted to give you another perspective because I feel like this post would have freaked me out, too!

Reply

94 Alyssa July 15, 2016 at 11:53 am

I see your point, but I disagree. I don’t really get why someone would say pumping while traveling is easy if that wasn’t their experience? Like the above commenter said, everyone is different, and just because it’s easy for some doesn’t mean it’s easy for everyone. I pumped for a year while working full time with my first and I’m about to do it again when my maternity leave ends next month. Sure, pumping itself isn’t hard, but the logistics can be a pain in the ass, and trying to get enough milk can be a pain in the ass. I had people warn me that it could be really challenging before I began, and sure, it scared me. But parenting is scary, whether you breastfeed, formula feed, feed purees, BLW, cosleep, CIO, etc. I found I was glad that people had been real with me about the difficulties so that I didn’t throw in the towel when I hit them myself.
Alyssa recently posted..Random life updates, because what else?

Reply

95 Laura July 15, 2016 at 11:08 am

I usually don’t comment, but I’m pregnant, and will be starting the pumping process- just one more vote that I found this really helpful! I like hearing about people’s ranges of experiences with breastfeeding while working, of course it is not necessarily easy but it’s good to know how everyone approaches it. And it’s your blog, so you should be able to write what you want and what is important to you. I can’t believe how many people take time out of their day to write such unnecessary, nasty comments when no one is forcing them to read your blog and there are so many others out there.

Reply

96 Laura July 15, 2016 at 12:30 pm

It’s amazing how so many people think they need to judge you and give unsolicited advice about your pumping. I formula fed my daughter from day one (by choice) and I still find these posts interesting to read. Just keep doing what you’re doing!

Reply

97 Kate July 15, 2016 at 1:18 pm

I have loved your blog for a long time, but I am really scratching my head about this whole post. Like others have said, you seem obsessed with breastfeeding/pumping past what is necessary to feed your kid. Taking real breastmilk into the Tampa airport? Pumping on an airplane and in a restaurant? All the extra work you are doing is not necessary to maintain a healthy, long-term breastfeeding relationship, and I wouldn’t want your readers to think that it is.

Reply

98 Felicia doherty July 25, 2016 at 7:49 pm

For a lot of breastfeeding mamas, it’s totally necessary. If I don’t pump every 4-5 hours my supply tanks.

Reply

99 Kari July 15, 2016 at 1:42 pm

Long time reader, first time commenter.

I just wanted to say a few things,
1. Way to go for being brave enough to put your life on the internet so that people can comment on it.
2. I commend you for choosing to pump while traveling for work. It doesn’t matter how much milk you have or don’t have, you made a choice and then documented it so that it might help someone else.
3. If you choose to pump every 3-4 hours, on a plane or on a boat or with a fox or in a box. YOU GO GLEN COCO! It shouldn’t matter how frequently you choose to pump or when or where or how. Turns out it is your milk and your body.
4. (note now I am just getting upset for you) If you didn’t want to donate your milk…..then you didn’t want to donate your milk. It does take a lot of research time and I would hate to “donate” my milk and then have it go to waste because I didn’t do the right thing.
As a new mom, I appreciate this post because I would have never thought to have pumped on a plane. It confirms to me that women are amazing and selfless creatures.

I am proud of you for going out on a limb and posting about an issue that so many people have opinions on.

Reply

100 Kathryn July 15, 2016 at 10:54 pm

This!

Reply

101 Reenie July 18, 2016 at 11:51 am

Ditto to Kathyrn! 🙂

Reply

102 Blonde Texas July 15, 2016 at 4:46 pm

I really appreciate the detail of this post! This could literally be a “How To” guide to women that are about to travel why pumping. Go you Meghann!

For all the other commentators with personally attacking comments – Shame on you. Shame. On. You. I doubt any of you know her LAST name off the top of your head, but yet you want to dictate and criticize her personal choices. The internet is a scary thing and these “Mommy Wars” have gotten out of hand.

How would you feel if someone, you had no clue who they were came up to you and started dictating the way you were parenting your child? I bet you would not take it so well. This is the same damn thing but you are just hiding behind a computer screen.

For the love of God, lets support each other in navigating motherhood!

Reply

103 Michelle July 15, 2016 at 7:52 pm

Ah, but you see, there’s this whole blog thing Meghann has where she’s been blogging her life. You know, in this here blog. Where she talks about her life. On this here blog.

Basically, if Meghann doesn’t want opinions there’s no need to a) have a blog or b) have the comments open on her blog. No one’s forcing her to share – dictating the response would be out of line.

Reply

104 Jessica July 15, 2016 at 10:52 pm

Being kind isn’t out of line. Not judging someone because they are different from you isn’t out of line.

A blog is not an open invitation for you or other peoples’ judgement. No one is forcing anyone to comment.

There’s this line I heard once—“if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

Reply

105 Michelle July 16, 2016 at 7:26 am

You seem to be under the mistaken belief that disagreement automatically means being unkind or judgmental. It doesn’t.

No one’s forcing anyone to comment – but again then again, a very few of these comments are judgemental, In fact, I wager that there are just as many positive judgements as negative judgements.

Its apparently ok for us to judge Meghann’s life when we agree with it, which I find odd. But any discourse is an open invitation to call the person who disagrees “Idiots”, “needs meds”, “a bully”, etc. How is that being kind?

Again, you seem to be under the mistaken impression that disagreement or critique automatically means unkindness or being mean. While, then I’m not sure how some people function in a world full of disagreement or critique – I face it at work with my boss, discussing things with my friends, in a organization I hold a leadership position in, even when I volunteer. Disagreement is a part of life.

I find it funny that I have never once in my years of reading this blog seen Meghann say “your commenting is unwwelcome here.” And yet, many of her commenters feel comfortable doing so for her. In her personal space. That you say she gets to dictate the content of. Just something to consider.

Reply

106 DD July 16, 2016 at 12:05 am

This!!

Reply

107 DD July 16, 2016 at 12:08 am

Sorry I meant to respond to Blonde Texas’ comment, not Michelle’s, who is clearly an idiot

Reply

108 Tiphani Peery July 15, 2016 at 9:30 pm

I live in Portland and I have heard that our airport is extra picky about breast milk – you may not encounter the same process everywhere! I flew out of Boston with a cooler full of milk and they didn’t say a word. I did put it through the x-Ray machine though – I didn’t know you shouldn’t have!

Another tip I was given was to put all the storage bags in a big ziploc bag in case they accidentally open. I had a co-worker come home from a trip with the bottom of her cooler filled with milk 🙁

Good job pumping while traveling! It is tough!

– Tiphani. Fellow airplane seat pumper 🙂

Reply

109 Jessica July 15, 2016 at 10:40 pm

I don’t usually comment, but I felt compelled to this time. As a mom of a child close in age, I feel I can relate. Every single day, as a postpartum woman, I struggle with ‘do I look put together? is my house clean enough? do I look fat? am I spending enough time with each of my family members? have I worked out enough this week? am I enough? And then, a mother to two children, I struggle with ‘did I give each child enough attention?’, ‘did I do enough creative activities?’ ‘did we spend too much time on electronics today?’ ‘will my baby ever sleep in his crib?’ ‘will my baby ever sleep in general?’ and THEN, as a wife….and THEN as a daughter….and THEN as a friend.

I cannot imagine if so many women who didn’t know me sat and picked apart my post that I thought was going to be helpful to other moms. A post that I spent my free time writing–hoping to inspire other moms to feel comfortable pumping and traveling. Sure no one is forcing her to share and she should expect some negativity because some people feel the need to spread negativity.

Meghann– thank you for writing this. I have a personal friend that loves receiving tips on pumping while working and/or traveling. I’ve already shared this with her as I think it’s a great resource. I also have shared your other pumping posts with her. I think you are doing great. I love your dedication to breastfeeding your daughter. I’m sure your freezer stash could help you make it to 2 years! Or you could use it to help others–either way, that’s your choice and you shouldn’t receive judgement for it.

I love reading your ‘mom posts’ & look forward to the next one!

Reply

110 Kate July 18, 2016 at 1:10 pm

Girl, yes! Great comment. And yes, you are enough.
Kate recently posted..Monday morning 

Reply

111 Kathryn July 15, 2016 at 10:52 pm

I cannot believe the judgement in this post. Who cares if you want to pump every hour if it works for you? And while donating would be awesome (and I see you plan to later), the shame for keeping milk and bringing it home seems over the top. I had major supply issues and had to supplement from be beginning so I have to say I’m super jealous 🙂

Reply

112 DD July 16, 2016 at 12:14 am

Meghann, keep up the good work and keep ignoring all of these haters that have nothing better to do than judge you for how often you pump or for saving your milk for your own baby (gasp). Bitches be crazy. Breastfeeding is the hardest thing I have ever done, and pumping sucks but is a labor of love.

Reply

113 Pam July 16, 2016 at 9:00 am

Just want to commend you for all that you are doing for your precious baby girl. I loved reading this and hearing the logistics in great detail even though I know many others are critical. I know a lot of people say it’s just something people do and why all the hoopla but it is HARD to exclusively give your baby breast milk and it’s interesting to read how you are doing so “on the go”. Keep it up – as you’ve said before there isn’t a tonne of info out there for people who want to know what to expect! Great job Mama!!

Reply

114 Claire July 16, 2016 at 11:18 am

I was really surprised by the comments to this post. I read your previous pumping posts, but not the comments, and was confused by the disclaimer: why would an overwhelmingly female audience be offended by a post about pumping? You seem really dedicated and organized about pumping. I find these posts to be informative and inspiring. When I read them, I see no judgment about what other mom’s choose to do, or suggestion that they should follow your rigorous schedule. If other moms find it unrealistic to follow this schedule while traveling, I think it’s great that they’ve found a better system that works for them and that they haven’t imposed something on themselves that is unrealistic for them and stressful. I wish certain of your readers did not read a recounting of your personal choices as an indictment of what they do, should it be different. Anyway, I’m sure you have a thick skin at this point after years of blogging, but wanted to add my comment that I enjoyed this post.

Reply

115 Kim July 16, 2016 at 12:02 pm

I am so proud of you and your dedication to breast feeding! As a medical professional this just makes me so happy. I couldn’t think of a negative thing to say about this post even if I tried. I don’t have kids but I hope to someday, and I hope that I can be as organized and dedicated as you are with this. I don’t think it’s “obsessive” or “worrisome behavior” you are just obviously very committed, you do what is best for you and your family, and I commend you for that.

Reply

116 Melissa July 16, 2016 at 1:32 pm

I’m assuming you went on to one of your online breastfeeding support groups and let them know how well this post went over and in they swopped to save the day,. Now your readers that were commenting are being called names and treated poorly by your online mommy “friends”. You have done a lot of pathetic stuff in the past but this it the worst. I’ll never give you a page view again.
Signed,
A BF and Pumping mom that thinks you are being really weird about it

Reply

117 Ingrid July 16, 2016 at 2:21 pm

Sitting here connected to the pump halfway through my maternity leave- traveling for work and keeping up my supply is one of the scariest things about my returrn. Thank you for sharing so much detail! Pumping is hard and formula would be easier but I love my daughter so much that a little inconvenience isn’t going to stop me. I’m sure you feel the same way! Keep on keeping on Meghann!

Reply

118 Lena July 16, 2016 at 4:02 pm

I am a long time reader, but barely get involved in comenting. I find pumping posts exteremely helpful. Our baby boy was born in March and due to flat nipples, wrong nipple shields and his low weight, it took us about a month to figure out BF. So I was exclusively pumping for a month. And boy, it was hard! Every minute saved on pumping was a minute more of sleep! I have used your posts as a guideline for pumping equipment and storage logistics. I have pumped occasionally since then ( for some seminars and short travels without a baby), but now I am getting back to work. And I will certainly re-read them all once again.

Reply

119 Brianna July 16, 2016 at 5:11 pm

I am a huge breastfeeding advocate and appreciate that Meghann took the time to write this post about her experience. That being said, it is a public blog…people should be allowed to respectfully give their perspectives too. It wouldn’t be very authentic if everyone said how much they agreed and loved the post. Some people were respectfully giving their suggestions that she could stretch out her pumping sessions to help her not because they were being judgmental or offended.

Reply

120 Abby July 16, 2016 at 11:20 pm

Kudos to you for making it work and being committed! My 2- year- old just weaned last month, and I treasured all that time with him. When I was returning to work from maternity leave I loved posts like this because it’s so helpful to see how other “real” moms make it work. Thanks for doing your part to normalize breastfeeding!

Reply

121 Kirsten July 17, 2016 at 10:36 pm

Thank you so much for writing this. I’m planing a trip in a couple of months and while my baby is 4 months older, I’m still breastfeeding and am planning on pumping while away.

I hate some of the comments that people wrote about your frequency. My baby is 13 months and I would be pumping just as much as you would be. In fact I’d probably have to be waking up is the night to pump.

I wish women were more supportive of each other. The comments above demonstrate why breastfeeding can be so difficult. People telling other people what to do based on anecdotal advice. Nope nope nope.

Reply

122 Kate July 18, 2016 at 2:18 pm

Every body is different, every breastfeeding relationship between mother and child is different. No one else is influenced by what one person chooses to do to feed their child. No one is shamed for their choices on this blog (outside of the comment section), so it makes me sad that negativity is being thrown around on here instead of support.

Couldn’t agree with you more.
Kate recently posted..Monday morning 

Reply

123 Lauren July 18, 2016 at 8:48 am

I’ve been a longtime reader of this blog and never posted before but I just want to say thanks to Meghann for this post! I pumped while at work for 14 months for my son every 3-4 hours! I never had a great supply but I wanted to provide BM so I did what I needed to do. I wasn’t stressed out by the task I just did it. I didn’t find this post to be as daunting as others are suggesting. I didn’t get a feeling that Meghann was complaining about how much pumping she did. If she wants to pump 10x a day, then so be it! Her choice! And so what she has a freezer stash! No one knows what tomorrow will bring and something may happen where she can’t BF, at that point her stash will be a life saver! Oh and just because her baby is close to a year old doesn’t mean she will magically stop drinking breastmilk! In my opinion the more BM a baby has, the better. Keep doing whatever works for you and your family mama! You got this!

Reply

124 Melissa @ melissakolbeck.com July 18, 2016 at 9:24 am

I love your commitment to Annalynn. I didn’t have to pump as often as you but I did pump regularly to build up my supply at the beginning and also to have a freezer stash. I was the over prepared mom for sure! While it was difficult to stop nursing my daughter, it was not difficult to stop pumping.
Melissa @ melissakolbeck.com recently posted..The Average Girl’s Guide to Living an Above Average Life

Reply

125 Kate July 18, 2016 at 1:06 pm

Everyone’s plan for feeding their child is going to be different, and however a parent chooses to feed their child is just fine. Everyone who breastfeeds/pumps is also going to do it differently. What you chose to do for your child does not reflect on anyone else, and I wish that everyone realized that we’re all just trying to do our bests. My son is 7 months old, and even though I know that my supply is well established and I have plenty frozen, I still feel so anxious if I don’t pump as much as I normally do one day, or if milk isn’t put away and sits out all night. I still pump multiple times a day at work and on occasion modify plans. That works for me and my family, and that’s all that matters. Good job doing what you feel is right for your family, mama!

Reply

126 Amanda July 18, 2016 at 2:32 pm

so. many. opinions.

Reply

127 Sara July 18, 2016 at 4:58 pm

My son is 9 months old and is still EBF. We had a rough road to start but now have a strong breastfeeding relationship. I work full-time and have gone through my freezer stash. I’m now “a just enough pumper. If I was on the same trip, I would have had to pump almost as frequently to ensure when I got back I had milk to send to daycare with him. When I have left him overnight, I’ve stretched my sessions out a bit longer than the 3-4 hours I keep during the workweek and found I actually pumped more. I pump in the car a lot with a nursing cover but that’s either alone or with my husband. I can’t imagine pumping on a plane or in the actual airport. But I do also understand you gotta do what you gotta do. If you didn’t have the freezer stash, I’d get some of the places you pumped but I just wouldn’t make people sit there while I ate.

Reply

128 Jax July 19, 2016 at 4:01 pm

Great job Meghann! The judgemental comments people are making on here are appalling. Honestly Meghann, I think you have some ladies on here trolling just looking to pick on you. Very disgraceful.

Reply

129 [email protected] July 21, 2016 at 6:29 pm

I bottle feed my son but applaud moms Who breast feed. Actually I applaud all good mamas who are out there doing their best. No judgment from me on how folks want to parent. But what I can’t get behind is bullying. If people don’t like how you do things – cool. Just comment respectfully and be done but this bullying by grown women is just crazy to me! Whew!
[email protected] recently posted..Once Upon A Time

Reply

130 Andrea July 21, 2016 at 7:40 pm

Great post – so glad you took the time to write up all the details. Thank you!

Reply

131 Felicia doherty July 25, 2016 at 7:40 pm

Longtime reader but I’ve never commented. I have a little one that’s 6 months and am really happy you posted this! Breastfeeding is a LOT OF WORK. It’s hard and time consuming and worth it. I sometimes feel like a slave to my pump but it’s worth it for the nighttime and morning feedings and knowing he’s getting the health benefits of breastmilk. Sometimes I feel like breastfeeding mamas are viewed negatively by sharing their experience, but you aren’t shaming anyone. Good for you for working hard to breastfeed and work! We need to build each other up not tear each other down! You go Meghann! 🙂

Reply

132 Anna July 29, 2016 at 11:26 am

I don’t have kids yet but I found this fascinating! Thanks for sharing 🙂

Reply

133 Katherine August 5, 2016 at 10:21 am

You were busy! Phew, I felt like this at work all the time when my little guy was nursing. Way to make it work for you!

Reply

134 Kate August 27, 2016 at 12:42 am

I would definitely recommend going with the medela freestyle if you decide to have another little. I work full time and EBF my little for a year through work travel trips (multiple days). It takes up a lot less room and is so much more discrete and easy to manage. Great job at making it work though; it’s definitely no joke and deserves a huge congrats!

Reply

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

Previous post:

Next post: