When I got pregnant with the pumpkin, my mother's friend at work loaned me her daughters Medella Pump. It was a lifesaver so we wouldn't have to shell out the big bucks to purchase one of our own. It has literally been "my breast friend" and we are never apart. I have heard people say that their breast pump is like their "second child," and that adage rang so true with me. You literally, if you work, carry that thing around everywhere, everyday with you, and if you show up to work without out or without a part you are lost without it, and I can't tell you how many times I had to run home bc I forgot my pump or a piece.
Well, two weeks ago, my mother called me and said, "Vickie needs her pump back." So, with a heavy heart, I got the bag all cleaned up and greatfully returned my best friend to its owner, who had just had twins. My mother had forgotten to tell me that she was expecting soon. So, now, with the pumpkin nearly one, and no pump, and my hubby nagging me to switch her to milk, I was left with a decision.
I sometimes wonder if we are given signs or if we SEE the signs we want to see. Here, I was suddenly put in a situation where I would have to stop pumping and wean the pumpkin or make arrangements to purchase a new pump (which financially wasn't perfect timing) and continue to breast feed the pumpkin. I believe in signs, but I was bound and determined not to be forced into a decision. I swore that I would breast feed our pumpkin till she was one, and I was not stopping until she was one, be it only a couple weeks away from her first birthday or not. And, so I made arrangements to purchase a gently used pump from someone that works for my company (more economical than renting one for a month which would cost nearly as much), and stretched some pennies...
I had been using my manual pump at work and for overflow, which really does not compare to an automatic. I am only allotted so much time at work in which to pump so I can only pump so much, which with a maual I am only pumping HALF as much, which dwindles my milk supply. Then, when I finally had the new pump in my hands, after purchasing new tubing, I discovered that it was not pumping properly. My breasts became engorged and I got a blocked duct (in nearly both breasts) but most severely on my right side.
So, I was back to my manual, and made arrangements to return the pump back to the owner. Then, I came down with the flu, and here I am trying to feed my daughter, when I haven't eaten anything but Ginger Ale in two days, and can't even get up to change her diaper or feed her from a highchair (Ha!)
So, bc it will be difficult to keep up with the pumpkin with a manual at work, and with the pumpkin's 1st birthday a week from today, the countdown for weaning has begun. Nik started loosing interest in her bottle at daycare a couple months ago, and she nurses sporadically when I'm home with her, in these wierd acrobatic positions (that cause my mother and my husband to look at the both of us like the two of us are crazy!!);0 My daughter is the size of a 2 year old, and my hubby says, it's that time. Our pediatrician said that after 1, breast milk offers no nutritional value for the pumpkin, it just serves to soothe the mother.
But, as I watch my milk supply dwindle, it aches me to have to say goodbye to this step in our relationship and this stage of motherhood. And, makes me nostalgic for earlier days.