Monday, August 03, 2009


I'm done with pumping and feeling quite melancholy about it actually. It's time. I wouldn't have done it if it wasn't time, but I'm still feeling sad and hormonal over it. Yes, I was happy this weekend (stopped/didn't pump Friday night...I worked until 10 pm instead) when I got to sleep in until 5:30 am Saturday, but over all...I could cry. I did pump a bit Saturday afternoon because I was in pain. Now, I'm just sore. I'm so tempted, as tired as I was of it, to do it just one more time, like an addict, but that will just drag it out. The thing is, this need and desire to pump and keep the milk flowing is all for me. The babies aren't even babies anymore really. They scoff at and refuse baby food because it is so babyish...and they want to do it themselves gosh darn it. Give them breast milk, cow milk, formula, whatever, they are fine and happy.

I've come to realize this isn't about them.

It's about me. I've secretly harbored this fantasy that as they grew, they would decided that breast is best and want to nurse if nothing else for comfort. Hasn't happened. It's not going to happen. I still feel so gypped about not getting to breast feed them.

It about them being born so early and in the NICU for so long. It's about how at that time there was so little I could do for them to make me feel like their mom other than provide as much milk as possible and give them as much time as could.

It's about the fact that I'm done having babies. Done. Over. Finished. Never to go there again. One was a miracle and a dream come true. Two was more than a blessing and an answer to prayers. Three was the bonus ...that which I didn't really want, but now would never want to live without. The icing on the cake to make our family complete.

It's about the fact that I haven't had my monthly menses since October or November 2007. I haven't missed it. I don't want it back. I don't want the reminder that menopause is around the corner. I don't want the reminder that my ovaries let me down. I don't want to remember all those years of ttc or the failures.

It's about habits and routines and something becoming so much a part of me and my life. And, oddly, while it's mainly about me, it's not totally about me. Max is being affected by the change. As much as he cried and hated it and tried to pull apart the pump when I first started way back 14 1/2 months ago, he's affected by my stopping as well. I've pumped for over 1/3 of his life. The very, very first thing he said to me this morning as he woke up late and came rushing out of his room in a panic was "you didn't start pumping already, I wanted you to wait for me" as he started to cry and throw a fit. And, I reminded him that he didn't miss it, I'm not pumping anymore.

It's about the fact that I may never get to sit down, especially on weekends, again. Pumping was forced down time. Time to sit and have a drink of water or tea. Check out email and keep up with a few things online. Time to take a break, cuddle with Max, rest awhile...all for a worthy cause of breast milk for the babies.

It's about the fact that by all accounts, the babies don't need it anymore. It's about them growing up so fast. As much as I'm happy they are out of that baby phase and things are just getting so much easier, there is a finality to this. There is no going back. Done is done forever more.

I'm done and no matter how right the decision. I'm feeling the blues.

And, that is why I'm going to become a waffle connoisseur and am going to keep practicing and trying new recipes and fine tuning so much that when they are teens I'm not even going to need a recipe anymore. And, that is why I was up late Saturday night making waffles for Sunday breakfast (and to freeze) and meatloaf for Sunday dinner and baking chicken for today. Maybe I'm going to inspire myself to pull out my grandma's home made cinnamon twist recipe and perfect that as well. They won't remember the breast milk, maybe they will remember that and feel love and comfort when they are grown.

I could pump for another month or longer, but until when and why? I can use the extra time now, although now that I'm stopping it doesn't seem like that much work or effort anymore. The grass is always greener kind of thing.

Weaning Max at 7 months to start to ttc was the most traumatic part of his babyhood for me. The only thing that got me through was the fact I may get a second chance. I did and I didn't. I'm not about regrets. I'm about making the best decision I can at the time and moving on. However, I'm pretty sure if I had to do it all over again, knowing what I know now, I wouldn't have weaned him then. I wouldn't have couldn't have given it up. Yada Yada, I know I had to so I could try and fail and try and fail ad nausium until I was ready to move on to donor egg.

Instead of making me feel better by purging and forgetting, I think this is making me feel worse. Maybe some day, I'll get over this dream, this fantasy, this longing for that which will never be. No more.



Katrina said...

OH Debbie, I could have written so much of your post. I, too, feel extremely cheated by the NICU experience which for me was thankfully shorter, but still so difficult as Jacob never did take to the breast OR breastmilk. I stopped pumping for him at 4 months (4 months?! can you imagine...i had visions of going 2 years or more!) because he just didnt tolerate it at all...threw it up all the time. Much later (at 10 months) the ped finally decided he had reflux...

Anyway, I know how difficult and emotional it is...I have no words of wisdom just wanted to say, "yeah, I get it." This too was probably my last baby as it is just too risky with the clotting...but I keep saying to myself how much I really want one more...and to be completely honest with myself, so much of that longing is because I lost so much of what I wanted with the NICU experience...

OK, I am sorry for the long ramble. Big hugs coming your way!

DG said...

I stopped pumping for mine at exactly the same time (though they do bf directly, I'm lucky)

You did so well.

But I understand your feelings.


Lori said...


Lara said...

I share many of your same feelings about finishing pumping. Well actually breastfeeding itself. I will return to week in two weeks and not sure if pumping will work for us. When Liam was born they whisked him away to the NICU, I didn't see him, much less hold him. I was afraid he would think he didn't have a mom. So I insisted they wheel me to the NICU to try to nurse him. (I was unsuccessful nursing my first son 2years earlier--but by gosh, I'd make it work this time.) Long story short, I, too, dread the return of menstruation as it (oddly enough) will remind me that I'm done having babies. Thanks for sharing this post--I don't feel so alone in this situation now.