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10 to Twins

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)

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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. Wow!

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?


Posted by Jay Park, a resident of another community,
on Oct 16, 2013 at 9:32 pm

I'm an unmarried, childless guy, but my friends reiterates the "two kids = loss of alone time".

Even better, when you have three kids you're forced to move from man-to-man coverage to a zone defense.

If you want alone time, you will need to activate players for game day: nannies, neighbors, relatives, etc. Money helps.

Good luck.

Posted by Jessica T, a Almanac Online blogger,
on Oct 17, 2013 at 8:02 am

Jessica T is a registered user.

Hi Jay,

Thanks for reading and for your comment - you are absolutely right that alone time more often than not means outsourcing childcare (although I'm very lucky to have a hands-on husband and a ten-year old to help out). That's not possible for everyone, but it our case, it's probably a good thing these twins came later in our careers.

Posted by Ms. Jenson, a resident of Rex Manor,
on Oct 17, 2013 at 11:43 am

Ms. Jenson is a registered user.

My mom says that one is like none, and two is like ten. So far, my two girls (ages 2 and 4) prove her right every day. Between teaching, mommy-ing, and wife-ing, the only alone time I get is when everyone else has fallen asleep at the end of the day and I can sit in the dark, stare blankly at my Kindle, and pretend to read. ;) Good luck in finding some quiet space to let yourself just be! Cheers, Ms. Jenson

Posted by Jessica T, a Almanac Online blogger,
on Oct 17, 2013 at 2:20 pm

Jessica T is a registered user.

Ms. Jenson - Your mom sounds like a wise woman. Thanks for the well wishes and good for you for trying to fit in time to read at the end of the day. Best of luck to you too with your little ones.

Posted by Dan C, a resident of another community,
on Oct 17, 2013 at 10:12 pm

@Jay -

I heard the man-to-man vs. zone comparison before we had our twins (bringing our total to 3).

And Ias soon as the twins were born, I realized it\'s not the right analogy. Zone is a different strategy for converting the same number of people. Three kids vs two parents is more like a permanent power play, in which you are always playing "a man down" and are always outnumbered!

Posted by Jay Park, a resident of Jackson Park,
on Oct 18, 2013 at 7:48 am

@Dan C:

Yes, your analogy is likely more correct, but I like football more than hockey (or at least more than the NHL).

Disclaimer: I *love* Olympic hockey.

Anyhow, Jessica will have her hands full. And least she will have an in-house babysitter in her eldest daughter (in a couple of years), but her alone time will need to be subsidized.

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