Thursday, March 25, 2010

Must... have... more... coffee...

In my years of condensed parenting experience (I say condensed because few people are insane enough to have three children in such quick succession), I have learned that a key ingredient to being the mother of small children is a steady supply of caffeine. Cruelly, Mother Nature dictated that caffeine is one of those things that is bad to have while you are nursing, so the supply must be limited when it is needed most. The first few weeks and months of a new baby are when you need a direct line of caffeine and you just can't have it.

In my case, F was a preemie and nursing is not something that I was able to do, directly that is, after he spent 16 days in the NICU. My nursing came in the form of pumping full-time, which is the most inconvenient way to pass on the nutrients of breastmilk. It wouldn't be so bad if F were my only child. Infants don't do a whole lot, which would leave a lot of time for pumping as much I need to. However, trying to pump with two other children running around and making demands of their own made it nearly impossible. It became a form of entertainment for C who, after observing a session or two, wanted to participate. This was fine when it was just wanting to press the buttons and adjust the strength - even though he did turn up the pump strength to the highest level one day, which almost sucked me into the tube. Towards the end, C was trying to participate by taking the cups and attempting to apply them to his own "boobies" after pulling up his shirt like I did. Bless his little heart. He declared that he was going to "pump the milk for Baby F."

My ability to produce enough milk for F has evaporated, literally, which brings me back to my discussion of caffeine. Now that I am free from the worry that I would make F hyper beyond the ability to sleep, I find myself ready to mainline the stuff. As I type, I am on my fourth cup of the morning. It doesn't seem like a lot, but I have been taking care of the kids, which prevented me from downing the other eight cups that I would have had if I had not been busy.

So, if you plan on having a baby anytime soon, make sure your coffee maker is at the ready (I got a new one to remove any doubt) and start buying the beans in bulk!

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