Sage spit up from the beginning and it became apparent that something was up as soon as we got home from the hospital. I would nurse Sage and he would spit up A LOT. Within 24 hours of being home, we were rushed back to the hospital because we did not know if something was seriously wrong. It turned out (after hours of testing, time in the ER, and x-rays on our 3 day old baby boy) that he just had severe reflux. Scary as a first time mama, but actually quite common I learned. This changed everything on how I needed to nurse Sage...
Month One - Because of Sage's reflux, for the first two weeks I was told I needed to feed Sage every two hours (because he could not eat a lot at one time) and then I had to hold him up on my chest for 30 minutes after each nursing session so the milk could gently settle in his stomach. When I say I spent the first month on the couch essentially just nursing Sage around the clock, I'm not exaggerating. We nursed, cuddled, he slept, and then we did it all again. I hardly slept and I don't even remember that time very clearly anymore. It was a quite a blur.
Month Two to Four - Sage's reflux improved greatly. I continued to nurse him in a football hold where he was sitting up as much as possible. During this time I stopped needing to hold Sage up for 30 minutes after each feeding. He tended to fall asleep in my lap though after each nursing session, so again, we spent a lot of time on the couch together all day long. I cherished the days home on maternity leave and I honestly loved those quiet moments with him. As we approached month four though, I started working with Sage on him napping in his crib (opposed to him just falling asleep on my lap after nursing). I should also mention that Sage refused the bottle until he was about 4 months old, so I nursed exclusively until that point.
Month Five - I went back to work when Sage was 4.5 months old. This was the first month that Sage drank more from a bottle (breast milk still) than he nursed. The transition was quite smooth which was a huge relief as I was back at the office full-time.
Pumping at work - I pump at 10:45AM and 1:45PM at work (or within 30 minutes of these times). I've been doing this for close to 8 weeks now and it's a good schedule. It takes me 15-25 minutes at each pumping session and I pump between 10-15 oz. at work.
Overall, at this point I pump 4 times a day and nurse 2 times (plus the middle of the night feedings which we are working on cutting back on). Last night was just once, but sometimes it's 2 or 3 times. My baby boy keeps me guessing with this new teething business.
That pretty much sums up my breastfeeding experience so far. I'm not sure how much longer I plan to. I guess if I have a goal I'd say a year, but I'm going with the flow. I know it will continue to change as Sage eats more solids.
I've been incredibly happy with my experience and I feel lucky that I've had such a good one.
Any questions? Feel free to ask!