04 February 2010

Hangin' up My Horns

(Warning: I'm going to talk about girl stuff in this post. Men and the queasy may want to skip it.)

Today officially (I think) marks the end of an era for my boobs. For the past year and two weeks, I've been a pumping queen, because, try as we might, BB wouldn't or couldn't breastfeed.

(Believe me, we tried. And tried. More people touched my breasts in the first month of BB's life in an effort to help than all my boyfriends combined. When it got to the point where I was taping feeding tubes to my chest and securing bottles in my cleavage, I said enough was enough.)

Since I strongly believe in the benefits of breastfeeding, I've pumped without fail every two to six hours for more than 365 days. I've nearly been walked in on by my boss. I was peeked on by a coworker who said, 'It's OK, my daughter breastfeeds'. I've pumped in a Cleveland parking garage and a car going 80 mph down the Ohio Turnpike. I've pumped in bathrooms, closets, conference rooms, and for one awesome, but short, stretch of time, a locked office with no windows.

But, alas, it's time to hang up my horns. Physically, the process is going a lot smoother than I imaged - I'm stepping down gradually and haven't experienced as much discomfort as I anticipated. And BB. Well, he loves whole milk more than my milk, which I have to admit makes me a bit emotional. Irrational, I know, but I am who I am.

It's pretty cool not to have to schedule my day around pumping. I'm looking forward to family gatherings where I don't have to excuse myself every four hours and work days where I don't have to decline a meeting because it's in my pumping window and nights where I don't have to wake up to make milk.

But a small part of me is going to miss this. I complained (a lot) while I was doing it, but it was all worth it. And I'd do it all - every ache, every inconvenience - again if the time comes.


Anonymous said...

I thought you should know that I have been fully in awe of your commitment. You are an amazing woman and mother. I can understand the mixed emotions...your baby is growing up. Now I think you should do a little dance...you don't have to wake up in the middle of the night to fasten a machine to your body!! Woot Woot!

Sarah said...

I admire that you went an entire year! I can only hope to do the same.

Wendy said...

I admire you for pumping for a year! That's HUGE and you DID IT!

SassyTimes said...

Good for you for lasting so long; especially pumping!

Isn't it funny how it makes you sad when you stop?? ...and when I looked in the mirror after the engorgement went down, I was even more sad. ;) haha.

the grumbles said...

Kudos to you for keeping it up so long, I am in awe. I only have to pump when I am at work and I HATE it. But I also understand your conflicting emotions. It's the end of an era.

Celebrate your new freedom!

Ky (Two Pretzels) said...

I have tears in my eyes just reading this. (I'm going to have a harder time with the weaning process than Lila.)

That said, I AM SO IMPRESSED THAT YOU PUMPED for THAT long!!! You're awesome.

One of our fellow blogger's cousins had an, "Emancipation Day" when she finally stopped nursing...

Question: So do you give whole milk to Baby B. in a bottle or sippy cup? I've been wondering about that.