By Jessica T
About this blog: I'm a late thirties mother of a ten-year-old and infant twins. My family moved to Menlo Park 6 years ago from Virginia - where I grew up, went to college, got married, had my first born, and got an MBA (in that order). I'm a manag... (More)
About this blog: I'm a late thirties mother of a ten-year-old and infant twins. My family moved to Menlo Park 6 years ago from Virginia - where I grew up, went to college, got married, had my first born, and got an MBA (in that order). I'm a manager at Google, Inc. (Please note: The views expressed in this blog are my personal views and not those of Google.) My husband grew up in Los Angeles and is a novelist and professor at San Jose State University. Our daughter attends the Menlo Park public schools, and I was a member of the Menlo Park-Atherton Education Foundation board for three years. I am now a board member for the Center for Literary Arts at SJSU. I struggled with secondary infertility for five years and recently conceived and delivered fraternal twins - a healthy baby girl and boy in May 2013. I've worked (and pursued my graduate degree) since my elder daughter was twelve weeks old. I supported my husband throughout his graduate education, and now I'm the primary breadwinner for our family. I have coped with the pressures and angst of what that means for many years. I am lucky to have a husband with a flexible schedule; he shoulders the lion's share of housework, cooking, and childcare in our home. I'm looking forward to engaging with men and women who can relate to the challenges of modern day life in Silicon Valley. (Hide)
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A pump of one's own
Uploaded: Oct 15, 2013
If you've read my bio, you know that I write many of my blog posts while pumping. Ten years ago, I couldn't afford my own double-breast pump. I borrowed a friend's after I was reprimanded at work for how loud my single pump was and pumped in an empty office that offered almost no privacy thanks to some well-placed windows. How times have changed! When I return to work, I'll get to use a Mother's Room fully equipped with a fridge. And one of the single best innovations since being pregnant 10 years ago is the invention of the hands-free breastpump bra.
Because the twins were born a wee bit early, they weren't strong nursers out of the gate, so I spent the first couple of months pumping (particularly at nights) to give my nipples a respite. But I also pumped after nursing during their early days to ensure that my milk supply would be ample. This time alone, away from the babies, visiting family, housework, etc...has become a rare sanctuary of alone time for me.
I pump for 20 minutes, possibly 30 and in that time - thanks in part to the killer hands-free breastpump bra, I can read novels, catch up on thank you notes, call friends, and yes - write blog posts! It's a quiet moment when I can at last let my mind wander and let the enormity of having a family of 5 after so many years of struggling sink in. One night as I pumped I heard an owl hooting outside the window which instantly transported me to 10 years prior when I was caring for my first daughter and living on a Virginia hilltop.
My husband and I have grown accustomed to some alone time having raised an only child for 10 years. At my last doctor's appointment, I told my OB that the only thing I was struggling with was less time to myself. She declared alone time was over once you have two kids. Can that be true? I cherish my time away from my kids as much as my time with them - this alone makes me a healthy and interesting person.
And when I go back to work, will my time pumping in the Mother's Room be spent frantically answering email and calling into conference calls or will it be time I can call my own as I have while at home?
Do you have a sacred space for alone time away from your kids? How do you carve out a time and place for it?
What is it worth to you?
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