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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

An Ode to Pumping

Who has two boobs and an infection in both??? This girl.

At first I thought it was a plugged duct. Then maybe it was mastitis. The Lactation Consultant said maybe a yeast infection. My OB cultured my milk, and it came back positive for an infection called klebsiella.

Ugh ugh ugh. Let me tell you all the reasons why this sucks so bad. First of all, it makes it really painful to pump. Pumping is about a negative 32 on the 1-10 scale of fun to begin with, so adding pain in the mix makes it EVEN WORSE.

(For those of you not in the know, pumping is an alternative to breastfeeding, except instead of a cute cuddly baby doing the eating, you hook yourself up to a machine that expresses the milk for you and stores it in bottles. The thing with pumping though, is you have to do it on the same schedule as a newborn would feed to establish your milk supply. Read: 20 minutes, every two to three hours. All day. All night. And I can GARUNTEE that waking up at 3am to plastic parts is not near as fun as waking up at 3am to that cute cuddly newborn. Buuuut they tell me that breastmilk is absolutely the best thing I can give my babies, so I pump my brains out anyways.)

(Wait, can it be considered an "Ode to Pumping" if I'm talking about how much I hate it?)

Reason numero dos the infection sucks: I have to dump all the milk I make until I finish up my antibiotics. I still have to do all the work, because otherwise my supply will tank and I won't make as much milk, but all my efforts are down the drain. Literally. And we're currently in the process of testing all the milk I have in the freezer to see when exactly the infection set in. We're all the way back to APRIL THE FOURTH and it is STILL COMING UP POSITIVE OMG. Everything that comes back positive has to be tossed. We're talking hours upon HOURS of work here, enough bottles to feed my babies for weeks, IN THE TRASH. It breaks my heart.

But really, the absolute worst part of the whole thing is that I unknowingly passed the infection to my babies. They both have had blood cultures that came back positive for the klebsiella and I feel terrible. Really, I kind of feel like DFCS should just go ahead and step in and take them now because I'm obviously the worst mom in the world. IN. THE. WORLD. And I know logically that it's not my fault and that I didn't know and that there was nothing I should have or could have done different but still... I got my babies sick. My teeny tiny struggling fighting babies, who have it hard enough as it is, are sick because of me.

This "Mommy Guilt" is something serious, yall.

Luckily, they don't seem to be TOO affected by it. Their platelet counts have been low, which is easily remedied by transfusions, but they're both still active and their oxygen needs haven't changed much. The doctor said that he is really pleased with how the babies are handling it because this is an infection that has the potential to be kind of scary so we're hoping, praying, pleading and making deals with God that we've seen the worst of it and they won't get too sick.

When you say your prayers tonight, say a little prayer that my babies get better. And while you're at it, say a prayer that my boobs get better, too. We'd all appreciate it!


  1. Oh my (on several points.) I hate that you're already feeling the mommy-guilt, but we try so hard to do everything right that it's hard to forgive ourselves when something does go wrong. There really is no logic involved. But, it gets better over time. WE'RE SO PROUD OF YOU for all you do to make life better for you son and daughter<3 Praying for sure!

  2. First of all, I'm prayin for your boobs...because if mama's not happy, nobody's happy! Second...I feel the mama guilt thing, but...this won't be the first time you blame yourself for something that affects your kids. You obviously have 2 little fighters on your hands, which is a good thing. We are praying for you and your sweet family every day. Let us know what you need.
    Mama P.

  3. Prayers of course. Love the blog! Happy to keep up. Sending my love to all four of you.

  4. I know that's gotta be tough. I've been pumping since I've been back at work (about 6 months) and it is NOT fun. There are some days I barely get enough pumped for the next day and it stresses me out. Our power went out a couple weeks ago and I couldn't sleep till it came back on because I was worried about losing all the milk I had stocked up in the freezer. That stuff is like precious gold! I'm so sorry to hear that you've had to throw so much out. Hang in there though and keep pumping. That's a GREAT thing you're doing for your babies!!


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