Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Savvy marketing

So it's been almost 6 weeks. It's still a little up in the air when I'm going to go back to school, but I think I can stretch it to March 2. I negotiated a little bit with our HR guy to give me a couple extra paid days in exchange for me grading my students' midterm exam...which is a pain in the ass, takes hours and hours (not a typical test, it's a series of labs and problems the kids work on for 2+ weeks beforehand), and which my non-certified sub can't officially grade. Since the HR guy denied my personal day last April to run the Nashville marathon, I now play by the rules, and I told my assistant principal and department chair that I would gladly grade it for a couple extra paid days, but that truthfully I couldn't care less what happens to it or the kids' grades if he denied it. Not when we're only allowed to use 6 weeks of sick leave, despite the fact that I have over 100 days I haven't used in the 8 years I've been there. Turns out the AP convinced him to give me 2 extra paid days, which is probably worth it (that's like 2 weeks of day care).

At any rate, I have to figure out what I'm going to do about breastfeeding when I go back. Surprisingly, I sort of like it. It's very peaceful, and easy, and convenient. I guess ideally I'd still breastfeed in the mornings, late afternoons and evenings. I just don't want to worry about pumping, so I'm happy to have her have formula during the day when I'm not there. But I also don't want to deal with leaky boobs during the school day. So I'm thinking I should start to transition a little now, get on some sort of schedule...right now, I pretty much feed her whenever she's hungry, which can be random - every hour for a while, then after a 4 hour nap, or maybe there's no nap that day, so... She takes bottles or either breastmilk or formula no problem, but it's just so much easier when I'm with her to just pull out the boob. I figure if I start by replacing one feeding a day with formula, like around 11 or 12, that's a start? Anyone have any ideas or advice? Is this something I should talk to a lactation counselor about? I never had any problems so I've never used one before...

At any rate, in the mail today I got 2 free cans of Enfamil, along with a variety of coupons. I guess they know 6 weeks is standard maternity leave, and about the time a lot of women give up breastfeeding or at least start supplementing. As much as I know it's marketing, it does make it easier to do it when they send me the formula for free...

Ack, it really is stressful thinking about going back to work. Luckily, there'll only be 3 and a half months til summer...

6 comments:

jessica said...

DEFINITELY talk to a lactation consultant. i had a hard time balancing breastfeeding and work (workplace wasn't pump friendly at all, and it was a big challenge to go out to my car 2-3 times per day in all sorts of weather). i lasted 6 months, but really regret that i didn't put my foot down and find a way to make it work longer. i think that would have been easier if i'd worked out a plan with an expert.

and formula is SO expensive.

N.D. said...

Sounds like a good idea to work out a plan for sure. I figured if I even do it, I'll only do it for 6 wks but it sounds like people get all into it and want to do it as long as possible! By the time you go back, which I think is around March 1st, it will be getting warm out and hopefully the rest of the year will go by super quickly. Your HR guy sounds like a jerk! I think most of them are!

Frayed Laces said...

Wow that's weird that the formula company targeted you like that!

X-Country2 said...

I'm a total sucker for free stuff. Good luck with whatever you decide and enjoy all your time at home. It'll fly by for sure.

N.D. said...

Hahha, I'll send you something else so I don't sabotage you!

erika p said...

I second the idea of talking to a lactation consultant. I'm really lucky that I pretty much structure my own day at work and I can pump in my office with my door closed. I learned to hold the pump bottles with one arm (one in the crook of my elbow and one in my hand) so I could still type and enter data with my other hand. :)

You might be more comfortable and able to keep your supply up a bit and use a little less formula if you just pump once a day. But I can see not wanting to pump at all with your schedule. You should be able to get her down to just a couple of feedings a day and still have some milk - that's what happens with an older baby - but I don't know the best way to do it when your baby is still so little, you're producing a lot of milk, and she wants a lot at each feeding. A lactation consultant will be able to answer all your questions and help you come up with a plan that will keep Andra getting the maximum amount of breastmilk without mama going nuts.

Good luck and good for you for breastfeeding and not completely stopping because you are going back to work. Breastmilk is so good for babies, and there is even some research that breastfeeding can help prevent autoimmune problems such as allergies - and RA (at least, juvenile RA - see the Dr. Sears website).