It is 5.40am and I am on a train, on the way to the airport, alone. With a breast pump in my suitcase.
I know, right? Alone! And a pump is right there on the seat next to me, and I actually have a plan to use it.
There are not many things that could convince me to attempt my first weekend without my little breastfed boy, but it seems that a day of intensive breastfeeding training with Indira Lopez Bassols in Berlin is one of them. It’s quite fitting, then, that this should see me face my fear of the pump and reach a few new personal milestones.
I will be away from my little one (and my big one! And my husband!) from 5am Saturday until 2pm Sunday. As yet, my husband has only managed to put my little one into bed twice in eighteen months – and not for lack of trying. As yet, my husband has never been able to settle him when he wakes in the night, which is usually at least four times, sometimes still hourly (though last night, he only woke at 2am, and was still yet to wake again when I snuck out the door at 5!). I am worried about the one night that I’ll be away; I’m worried just because I am a mama who loves my boys and my husband and who doesn’t want to see them in distress. I know, though, that they will all be okay, and will fumble through it in whatever way they discover works for them.
|I’ve worked hard to get this little one to find comfort from
something aside from me, and this teddy ‘Basil’ is it!
I was unsure if I should even worry about bringing a pump when I am away for only 33 hours. It is not as if I am feeding every three-hourly anymore… But after asking for thoughts from my Breastfeeding Mamas group, I decided to borrow one from my friend (and midwife) ‘just in case’. I have never experienced engorgement, never even a feeling of ‘fullness’, and I still am very suspicious about the amount of milk I actually produce. But I have also never gone a full night without feeding at least three times, and these past few days, Harvey seems to have stepped up his feeding again and is wanting it two or three times during the day too. It really would be a pain in the boob if my one little jaunt away was marred by hugely painful breasts.
|I wish I had a more flattering breastfeeding photo for this post…
but I just don’t… This is real life, people.
Some women, when I asked for thoughts on going away for the night, mentioned weaning; that if I wasn’t planning on weaning him anytime soon, then maybe I should think twice about being away for a night, or should plan on bringing him with me. This sent me into a bit of a tailspin, I admit, as both he and I are not remotely ready to be finished with breastfeeding. But after a lot of unnecessary stressing and reassurance from other mums, I packed my suitcase and here I am.
|My airport breakfast|
It’s been a while since there have been big new milestones on this journey of ours.