Monday, July 23, 2012

Closing Down the Dairy Farm

I know I've been a bad blogger, but I seem to be going through a bit of a funk.  Here's the background... most of you probably know that I've been exclusively pumping since Luke was born.  I have named my pump (Patsy the Pumper).  I have pumped in the car (moving down the highway, in parking garages, you name it), in airport restroom stalls, empty conference rooms, dressing rooms, the hair salon, ranch houses (on a fun weekend trip), warehouses (on a not-so-fun work trip).... the list goes on and on.  Needless to say, it has not been an ideal nursing situation but one that I felt -- along with his pediatrician-- gave Luke the best shot at catching up nutritionally.   I mean...remember this little man?

Without going into medical-ese here on the blog, Luke was on special fortifiers until he was nine months old.  It added extra calories and nutrients that most babies get in the third trimester that Luke missed out on and helped to pack on the pounds as well as boost his overall health.  But it meant a LOT of pumping.  I literally pumped every three hours for exactly fifteen minutes.  I had timers set and would drop what I was doing, thus all the random pump places.  Even during the night until Luke was 6 months old.  We added it up and at 11 months, I had spent around fifteen straight days pumping!!! 

The good news is my body seems to be made for milking--- I swear I must have been a wet nurse in some "previous life"!  We finally bought a standing commercial-grade freezer for the garage so we could stock pile and have a plan for my work trips.  And stock pile we did.  We packed so much frozen milk into the freezer that we couldn't even fit a frozen pizza out there.  Only one problem... Luke wouldn't drink the thawed milk.  But we continued to stock up... you know, just in case.  At nine months, when we were given the green light to take him off fortifier, I was thrilled.  In fact, I had the pediatrician give me formula that day.  We tried it.  And Luke puked.  Not just spit up, but his reflux-y, Emily Rose resembling all out vomit.  And that is soooooo not my favorite thing.  So we backed off.  Tried it a week and a half later.  Same thing.  And so on and so on.  SO, I continued to pump.  And we started to mix half thawed from the freezer and half freshly pumped.  And it was pretty much working.  So I continued to pump but cut back on how many times a day.
NOW, as we near the one year milestone and I know the time that I can give him the one thing that nobody else can is coming to an end.  And it's scary. 

So on top of being all conflicted about the pumping, milk, formula, whole milk scenario, THIS hair-brained mama accidentally didn't close the freezer door all the way.  On a day when it was at least 100 billion degrees.  And it melted.  Not a little.  Not just a few bags.  ALL OF IT.  Completely thawed and wasted.

And I know it's probably more than a little crazy that it upset me.  Especially since little man wouldn't even take it unless it was mixed with fresh.  But I seriously was sick to my stomach throwing it all out.  And our freezer went from 100% completely stocked, stacked to the brim with momma's milk....with no more room for anything else...To this....

Fast forward a week.  I notice the ice cream in the kitchen freezer was a bit soft.  We call out a repair man and it takes a few days to get an appointment.  At that point, the temperature has risen to the point where we had to throw out all the freshly pumped milk.  AND since I've cut back on pumping, holy moly has my whole "wet nurse" status changed. 

So, I've been a bit of a stress ball but trying to work through it all.  I'm now driving milk from work to the house on my lunch break and remembering all those trips to the hospital with milk in the beginning.  Ironic as his first birthday is just over two weeks away!
So, come on first birthday!  And pray my little guy likes this version just as well

Any input on when and how to switch to whole milk?  I'm thinking we will skip the formula step since he's so close to his first Bday and start doing one bottle a day of Horizon's Organic Whole Milk to bridge the gap.  Is this a bad idea?  Any mommas have advice on the whole situation?  (Can you believe he's going to be ONE!?!?!?)

Oh yeah, so on top of the multiple "milk crises" at our house, we are in full on party planning mode.  I can't wait to celebrate Luke's first year --- but more importantly--- to see what's to come for his future.   Besides, who doesn't like to throw a party?  Especially for a handsome fella like this?


  1. OMG I would have been devastated too! I only pumped/nursed for 3 months but I know that every drop was like gold! Looks like you had a week similiar to mine :( I can't believe little Luke is going to be 1 so soon! He's adorable and I can't wait to see pics of his party! Also, we are having the girl's 1st party in Norman over Christmas...if you all are around it would be fun if you could make it!

  2. I hate this for you. I know how much hard work it was to pump all those months and how much is sucks to lose it all. So sorry. Product idea - a mom needs to invent a monitor that you stack with your frozen milk that alerts you (via noise, email, doorbell, any way you can think of) when the temp gets below freezing to give you a heads up when something's gone wrong with your freezing machine. :-)

  3. So the day I actually read this post, our fridge had just broken and I was taking my frozen milk to my parents' house to save! I actually told my husband that if any of it thawed, I would cry. So I can't imagine how frustrated you were!!