I’m a dumbass. I tripped over my pump and broke off a piece of the faceplate. One of the pieces that makes it into a double pump instead of a single. At first Adam put a piece of tape over the broken piece so I could use it as a single pump. that worked for about five minutes. then I stuck my finger in the hole while I pumped but that made the whole pumping situation more of a clusterfuck than normal. Finally I filled the hole with hot glue. It was a great solution, but I was still left with a single pump instead of a double.
I used the pump for eighteen months with Egg. It allowed me to go out a few times with Chicken to concerts, and the times that my supply was low I had a stash in the freezer. I’ve used it for the past eight months with Coop, and it is the only reason I made it through a mastitis infection. I simply could not nurse on the infected side, and pumping kept that breast going until the infection was under control. although my pump was old and pieced together, it allowed me to keep nursing Coop when otherwise he’d be formula fed today.
Then I tripped over the damn thing. I’m not especially graceful, but the fibromyalgia causes stiff muscles. I knock shit around and collect bruises like it is a hobby. I was hoping to borrow or rent a pump until I figured out how to fix it or replace it with another used model. a few friends reached out to me and offered to lend me their pumps. I asked my local Babies R us and they didn’t have any rental pumps in stock. I thought I could buy a replacement faceplate, until my research revealed that my pump was a 2003 model.
When I was pregnant with Egg in 2008 I knew that I wanted a pump. the Pump in Style by Medela was highly recommended. but it was about $250 dollars. I couldn’t see spending our limited family budget on a pump when applying a baby to my breasts did the same thing. Adam found a pump on eBay for about hundred dollars. I bought new bottles and flanges, but the whole accessory kit with tubing was pricey. My current set of tubing I bought at the local feed store for three dollars. I had an old, broken pump that was pieced together but it got the job done.
Which brings me to last Thursday. a friend I knew in high school and recently have reconnected with texted me and asked about my pump. then she said my solution would be at my door on Thursday. I know that her mother works locally, so I assumed that her mom was going to drop off her old pump. or something like that. Maybe she had a connection with Medela and knew how to get a replacement faceplate? I had no idea, but I was so touched and relieved that I would have a working double pump again.
You know, I feel like I fail my friends every day. I’m so busy trying to do the basic stuff of living that months go by and I realize that I’ve neglected to talk to or see many friends. What kind of friend am I when I can’t give anything of myself to others? Part of me knows that I only have so many spoons, and taking care of three children uses more than I have every day. but everyone has their own excuses, why they don’t reach out more than they do. I want to be there for my friends, I want to call them (with the PHONE for fuck’s sake) and inquire after their children, spouses, family. I want to be the kind of friend that my friends are to me.
Thursday evening when Chicken and I got back from our rheumatologist appointments I found an Amazon box on my front porch. I opened it up and found a brand new pump. I grabbed the box and cried. Chicken looked at the pump and at me crying. He looked as if he might start crying as well. Adam was stunned. It’s a brand new pump, a nicer pump than I had. with all new parts, with a two phase mode that made magical milk when I tried it. when you have an awesome new pump your milk lets down twice in a ten minute pumping session. I pumped five ounces of milk in the evening after feeding my baby, the time that my supply is lowest. and I cried. Because I’m not a good enough friend for this. Not a good enough friend for her, or all of you with your words of encouragement and support.
Thank you, my friend. I hope to see you soon. I hope to be the kind of friend that you deserve to have.