Thursday, November 21, 2013

21. Volunteer my time for a good cause

Well, it is hard to get out and volunteer with a baby, no question there. So my time put to a good cause is a little different than you might expect.

I have had a wonderful experience with breastfeeding my daughter. I know this can turn into a touchy topic. But it has worked out for me and I've been loving it. Anyway. Before I decided to stay home with my daughter, we had a daycare picked out and lined up for her. The week after she was born, I began pumping to build up a stash of milk for daycare and continued daily, usually twice a day. When she was almost three months old and we made the decision for me to stay home, I had a lot of milk stored up. It seemed silly to feed her the milk in a bottle when I was with her all day, so I started looking for a place to donate my milk.

I found a local milk bank that pasteurizes the milk and then distributes it to sick and premature babies. I have been donating milk since my daughter was 3 months old and up to now have donated over 1,100 ounces. Each ounce can provide two or three feedings for a premature infant, so I know that what I am doing is saving lives.

I pumped twice daily for a long while and am now pumping once per day. It is quite a time commitment as each session takes me almost 30 minutes. I use some milk to mix my daughter's oatmeal cereal and she has had some (very infrequent) bottles, but the majority of it has been to donate. When I get tired or annoyed of pumping, I just think of the good I am doing and keep on going.

So that is how I am volunteering my time. I know some people are grossed out or are not comfortable talking about things like milk donation, but for me it has been nothing but good. I urge you to please consider this option if you ever have the opportunity. I am proud of how long I have kept up and will continue for as long as I am able. 


5 comments:

  1. That's really awesome of you! Nothing gross about it at all - you're helping out tiny little babies that are unable to fend for/feed themselves. Thank you, Sister!! :D

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  2. What a great idea!! I always say there is always a way for everyone to help out somehow & this shows just how diverse help can be. Breast milk is not gross in my opinion (why do people think that??) & I bet those babies & their parents don't think so either.
    Cheers
    Lush

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  3. Thank you all for your support!! :)

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  4. This is an incredibly generous thing you are doing! I sometimes feel bad that I am not donating milk...I began with an abundant supply, but I never really pumped because I didn't need to. So later when I thought about donating, I hadn't really created the demand for all that extra milk, so I didn't know if I would be able to produce it. Probably I still would have...or still could...but it is so time consuming with all the pumping and washing and storing. So, like I said...incredibly generous of you!

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