I’m done pumping.
That’s right, done.
N hit the six month mark and I finished up a few pumping sessions. Gave him a few more antibodies. And prayed that God would help me make this transition well. That I would replace the time spent pumping with something good for me, rather than just taking on more mom duties.
Truth be told it really wasn’t as awful as I thought it would be initially. When N was two weeks old and still not eating I thought if this kid isn’t going to eat, how will I manage to feed him with all this medical equipment, take care of an active preschooler, keep laundry piling up to the ceiling, not serve TV dinners every night, make sure my house isn’t on fire, hold a crying baby, and pump? I can’t tell you how many times I told my lactation consultant, “I need an out. If I can’t do this long term, give me the cheat sheet on how to wean off the pump quickly.” She did. But I never used it.
I even tried to quit a few weeks after N got home from the hospital but decided against it. In a strange way it was still something that still bonded me to him. Not only did I give him some good milk but I gave myself something too. And that made me a better mom.
Over time I came to look forward to my pumping sessions. I set up a little station in the corner of my room with a book I was reading, my laptop, Bible and notebook. I would get all set up and then escape into the world of writing blog posts, reading, praying, or catching up on emails. I gave myself permission to set my kids up well so that they didn’t need me for twenty minutes. Honestly, it was almost better than a bubble bath.
I had a positive experience nursing my firstborn. It was something that came very easily for me. After a difficult pregnancy where I felt my body was failing me in different ways throughout each trimester and then the ultimate failure of delivering him too early, I saw nursing him as a way of redeeming myself as a new mother. Finally my body was doing something good for my baby the way God intended it to. It was such a time of bonding for the two of us.
It was also a hang-up for me in pursing adoption. Silly as that may sound, I really wanted to breast feed my next baby. I thought that if we adopted the chances of me being able to trick my body into producing milk were very silm. I wanted the same special time with my second born as with my first. Ironically God did not have plans for us to adopt and the baby that He did give us, is not even able to take a bottle. I wish I hadn’t been so narrow minded about bottle feeding because I would nearly give my right arm to be able to bottle feed N.
So I’m done. I feel mostly good about it. I want to keep the positive things that came out of my pumping season without hanging on to the pumping, or the pump, itself. Over the last year I went through the Jesus Calling Devotional by Sarah Young. This next year, I plan to read through Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest. It’s one that I’ve always aspired to. So I am going to pack my pump away and pull this book out instead.
My book, Beauty in Broken Dreams: A Hopeful Handbook for the Early Years as a Special Needs Parent, is now available on Amazon!
Also be sure to check out my list of Favorite Books on Disability!