Saturday, January 03, 2009

34 Bags of Liquid Gold

I remember it like it was yesterday. Walking into the NICU with my 20 cc's of milk. I was so proud of it and had worked for about 40 minutes to get it. The nurses refer to breastmilk as liquid gold, especially for NICU babies who need the fat and protein so desperately. 20 cc's was the most I had ever gotten at one time (it's less than one ounce for anyone not used to measuring their milk!) and it was for Owen this time. The nurses had been alternating who got my milk and who got the premie formula.

My mom was holding Owen and the nurse was attaching the syringe to his feeding tube so she could pour the milk in. She was talking to us and telling us about the boys' stats for the day and she wasn't watching what she was doing and dropped(!!) the milk. There it went, all over the floor. Looking back, I can't believe that I held it together as well as I did. I was postpartum, my hormones were going crazy, my milk hadn't officially come in yet (obviously!) and I had just pumped for 40 minutes to get that small amount of milk that I had convinced myself would be the ticket to getting the boys out of the hospital that much sooner. All over the floor!

And now, four months later and cleaning out our freezer before we move, I just poured 34 bags of pumped milk down the drain. It was well over 100 ounces of milk and I didn't bat an eye at doing it. [As an aside, I had considered donating it to the hospital for the moms who don't/can't breastfeed, but I wasn't sure on the dates of thrush and didn't want to pass that along to the babies.]

I have to say, my pride comes out a little when I think of having the willpower and ability to nurse twins, but more than that, I appreciate God's unique way of creating and designing moms to provide for the needs of their babies.


suzannah said...

i think you really are amazing for nursing both your boys. i was just telling a friend about you yesterday and how much time you must spend nursing--especially in those first weeks! you are such a good mom, beth. blessings to you and your travels and transitions.

i certainly would have lost it if a nurse dropped my colostrum--how awful! and, i don't think i could have poured the milk down the drain myself--i'd be heartsick! i've only used a manual pump, tho, and i imagine your electric one is a bit more efficient. love you!)