By Jessica T
A pump of one's ownUploaded: Oct 15, 2013
If you've read my bio, you know that I write many of my blog posts while pumping. Ten years ago, I couldn't afford my own double-breast pump. I borrowed a friend's after I was reprimanded at work for how loud my single pump was and pumped in an empty office that offered almost no privacy thanks to some well-placed windows. How times have changed! When I return to work, I'll get to use a Mother's Room fully equipped with a fridge. And one of the single best innovations since being pregnant 10 years ago is the invention of the hands-free breastpump bra. Wow!
Because the twins were born a wee bit early, they weren't strong nursers out of the gate, so I spent the first couple of months pumping (particularly at nights) to give my nipples a respite. But I also pumped after nursing during their early days to ensure that my milk supply would be ample. This time alone, away from the babies, visiting family, housework, etc...has become a rare sanctuary of alone time for me.
I pump for 20 minutes, possibly 30 and in that time - thanks in part to the killer hands-free breastpump bra, I can read novels, catch up on thank you notes, call friends, and yes - write blog posts! It's a quiet moment when I can at last let my mind wander and let the enormity of having a family of 5 after so many years of struggling sink in. One night as I pumped I heard an owl hooting outside the window which instantly transported me to 10 years prior when I was caring for my first daughter and living on a Virginia hilltop.
My husband and I have grown accustomed to some alone time having raised an only child for 10 years. At my last doctor's appointment, I told my OB that the only thing I was struggling with was less time to myself. She declared alone time was over once you have two kids. Can that be true? I cherish my time away from my kids as much as my time with them - this alone makes me a healthy and interesting person.
And when I go back to work, will my time pumping in the Mother's Room be spent frantically answering email and calling into conference calls or will it be time I can call my own as I have while at home?
Do you have a sacred space for alone time away from your kids? How do you carve out a time and place for it?