Thursday, June 6, 2013

Fist Bump for the breast pump

I LOOOOOOOVE that Kristen Bell is most proud of her accessories - her high heels and her breast pump.

Last summer, I was fortunate enough to be asked to be in two weddings!    Giselle was still nursing, so my handy dandy breast pump came with me to 2 bachelorette parties, 2 showers, and 2 weddings.  I pumped in the back of a "limo" on a Prom Dress Wine Tour.  I pumped while riding in a car on the way to and from Boston.  I pumped in a spa in Geneva before getting a manicure.  I pumped in the car (EMX was driving) on the way home from a Dave Matthews Concert. I proudly carried that pump everywhere I went if G wasn't with me.  I totally related to Kristen Bell when I saw this article!

Nursing wasn't easy for us.  It was SEMI easier knowing that it would be difficult though.  When I had Reed, I had no idea how many tears would be shed, only to stop nursing after a week, and then exclusively pumping for 4 more.  Ultimately, I did stop pumping with Reed because my body was just not healing well from birth.  I wasn't enjoying my time home with him, and that was more important to me than getting a few ounces of breast milk here and there.  With Giselle, I made a promise to myself that I could make it 6 weeks.  And then 8 weeks.  And then, what's another 4 weeks?  With the help and support of a lactation consultant (Donna was seriously a Godsend) and my family, slowly I kept pushing my deadline out and ultimately, after 6.5 months of nursing, I did stop.  It definitely took a toll on my body - 3 bouts of mastitis (I've written about that here before), each one worse than the previous, an ER visit before hosting a birthday party, major hair breakage, vitamin D deficiency, and an emotional roller coaster with hormones all over the place.  But I don't regret one second of it.   I feel a very strong emotional bond with Giselle, which I'm thankful for, because with Reed, it felt like it took much longer to have that strong bond.  (Maybe it was the c-section drugs?)

Moral of the story:  I tell every expectant mom the following if the conversation about nursing comes up.  It's HARD.  If you want to stop, stop.  You will feel guilty.  But guess what, you will feel guilty for EVERY decision you make for the rest of your life.  Going back to work?  You'll feel guilty about leaving your child.  Staying home with your child?  You'll feel guilty about not "bringing home the bacon."  There is no right answer. Do what works for you and your family.  Everything will work out just fine.  :)

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