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Disclaimer: The information in this post is for educational purposes only. I am not a doctor. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. None of the opinions are meant to diagnose or treat any disease or illness. You should always consult your healthcare provider.

Travel Without Baby: One Mom’s Experience

I was recently blessed with the opportunity to join my husband on an international business trip this summer. We traveled to Germany and France. Sounds amazing, right? Well, we had to travel without baby.

One mom's experience of travel without baby

Before anyone jumps to attack me for taking a trip without baby, let me assure you that all of our children were fine. Grandparents stayed and watched them for 9 days in our home. It was a fantastic bonding experience for them and it was a much- needed bonding time for the hubs and I.

Penelope was 10 months old. I had a freezer full of pumped milk ready to go. I had packed both my hand pump and electric pump.  I had done research on what to do with the milk I pumped while gone. I decided to pump and dump rather than try to save it and donate or ship it home (I found out later that my hotel didn’t have a way to store it anyway). I had read about reintroducing the breast after using bottles. I was as ready as I could be.

Travel Without Baby: One Mom’s Experience

I wasn’t ready for the emotional side. This was the longest I had been away from any of my children. This was my first time this far away from my children – first time traveling internationally. This was the first time hubby and I had been alone for more than an overnight in almost 7 years. I had underestimated how much the struggle to produce enough milk for my first would affect me as I pumped.

I’ll be honest. The plane flight was really hard. I sobbed with each let down. I sobbed with the flight attendants as I waited for a bathroom to pump in. I sobbed as I poured my liquid gold down the drain. The stress of the flight, the need to use just my hand pump for 12 hours, and the lack of hydration caused a nasty clog.

Thankfully, it got better.

I got the hang of using my electric pump on my new vacation schedule. I got some lecethin supplements to help prevent clogs. I used my essential oils to support my immune system and mood. The sobbing decreased as I got comfortable in my new surroundings. After a couple days, the big hormonal rush at let down had pretty much subsided. It wasn’t a huge deal to walk back to the hotel to pump a few times a day.

Hubby and I were able to fully enjoy our working vacation without children. The time to reconnect is something I wouldn’t trade for the world. Facebook helped us stay in touch with grandparents and kids to ease the homesickness. All in all, it was wonderful.

On our return flight, I became comfortable pumping at my seat. Just knowing I would see baby soon helped tremendously. As we got closer to home, however, the anxiety kicked in. Would baby take the breast again? She was 10 months old. It had been 9 days apart. Would she remember? My boys had lost the ability to latch fairly quickly after weaning.

We arrived home. Baby was hungry. She wouldn’t latch. For hours I tried and worked with her. No latch. I was heartbroken. Until the middle of the night.

As I tended to Penelope in the middle of the night, I snuggled her next to me in bed to nurse. In her sleepy state, she latched right on. Tears of joy!

For anyone on the fence about travel without baby, I will say that it definitely can be done and be a great experience. It isn’t easy, but it can be very rewarding. Take the time to learn about air travel and breastfeeding. Learn about all the different things that may affect your trip. Then pack up and enjoy!

Have you done any travel without baby? How long were you apart? What was your experience?

Audra Michelle has been pregnant and/or breastfeeding for more than 6 years straight. Her first nursed for 15 months, her second for 14 months, and her third weaned at 27 months! Her first baby girl is thriving on breastmilk and will wean when she chooses.  Audra Michelle is a wife, mother, daughter, girlfriend, Jesus lover, and musician. You can find Audra Michelle blogging at UP and at Naturally Well.


  1. Great experience! Thanks for sharing helpful post.

  2. Those are great tips, I’m definitely going to use them.

  3. Ugggh, over dramatic. Thanks for weirding me out

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