Friday, January 29, 2010

Burnin' The Breastpump -or- The Medela can Suck It!

Holden's 1st b-day almost upon us. I should've made a paper chain to count down because with the transition to HDM turning one, I am also burning the Medela (ok, not so drastic, but definitely putting it away for a while.) My "production" is already on the wane, so I don't see it being that big of a deal....but I am biting my nails a lot lately which tells me I have some anxiety about the situation.

I will miss the insurance that comes with added immunity and antibodies for Holden. The price is definitely cheaper than Winder Dairy Whole milk, and it has been a blessing to more than just Holden.

(More details on this later -- see end of post.)

If he was still actually nursing, I don't think I'd be as excited about weaning at a year; but maybe I'll experience that with a different child.

Mixed emotions...definitely:

Things I will not miss about pumping:
  • pumping in the car
  • pumping on airplanes (in the middle seat...)
  • pumping in public restrooms
  • pumping in hotels
  • pumping in the movie theater (oh yes, it's happened more than once)
  • living my life in 2 or 3 0r 4-5 hour increments
  • feeling like a dairy cow
  • washing, sterilizing, assembling, cleaning, storing, etc
  • The sound...oh the awful sound.
  • Nursing bras
  • The time...(4 - 8 times a day, 15- 20 minutes each time for 12 months means over 50,000 minutes of my life which I think roughly equates to OVER A MONTH!!!).
Which explains why I will not miss:
  • Holden's face when he wants to be held and I'm 'hooked up' (in the least cool sense of the word)
Danny may miss me being topless. He said that's how he imagined marriage... his wife just walking around with her shirt off all the time.

What is it with men and thinking that when women are alone we just walk around 1/2 naked or in our skivvies?

I've shared with many of you how hard it was for me that Holden and I never really 'got' the nursing thing, but I don't think it was from lack of trying:
  • Lactation Consultants
  • Trips to Lactation Station
  • La Leche League phone consultations and a meeting
  • Spoon feeding, cup feeding
  • Hours on
  • Nipple shields
Pretty much everything short of a wet nurse...

The History
I started pumping at the hospital, and basically have been doing so ever since. Needless to say, the first few months I honestly thought I wasn't going to make it... pumping eight times in a 24-hr period AND trying to nurse made me feel like my entire life revolved around breastmilk.

At four months, Holden completely refused to latch...but I kept going. I had made the decision to nurse Holden for at least a year, and this was the closest I could get to it. It wasn't like I didn;t have enough milk (oh there was plenty to go around!)

In the earlier months I would sometimes lay in bed (when I should've been sleeping) or sitting at the pump and ask God why it was so hard for me -- childbirth (Labor & Delivery), nursing... why didn't 'motherhood' come easily for me?

Why didn't Holden want to nurse?
Why was it such a struggle?
Why, why why?

But I kept pumping...because I thought it was best for Holden. (And I thought it would make me thinner, but the last 5-10 lbs of baby weight really just hung around.)

Turns out, it wasn't just about Holden.

The story kind of chokes me up, and I don't want to sound all self serving, but I think it's best if I let my sister tell you about it. If you want the Reader's Digest version:

Her daughter (just 6 weeks older than Holden) got really sick and was in desperate need of liquid gold. I had ample. In fact, at one time was consistently producing 50-plus ounces a day. It seemed to help.

So I stopped being upset about being tied to the pump for the past year. I started thinking that in the craziness of life with the Medela, that there are some real miracles that have come because of it ...if Holden was latching I would've NEVER felt the need to pump so much.
I would've never had the storage and would've never been able to help little Faye.

Everything is perfect.
(When will I finally learn this lesson?)

Oh! I almost forgot...If you have extra milk or know of anyone who has excess, let the Mother's Milk Club of Utah know. There's info on it here.


sarah said...

hey Sab- what a great story with Cecily and her baby. You are the woman.

K- I think you are so darn hilarious and so wish I was around to see you with your adorable boy. Can you believe our babies are going to be ONE. Makes me sad. Time has flown by this year. Good luck with the weaning off that black beast. I bet you are anxious to get rid of that thing (at least for a while). Hope all is well. MIss ya girl.


Alicia said...

Sabrena, you are amazing. Really. I was totally teared and choked up reading about Faye and your miracle milk. Happy 1st year of being parents to you and Danny!!

Marie {Make and Takes} said...

You pumped on the plane? Manual? What about the noise? You are one talented lady!!