Coordinating a business trip with three kids under four and a husband who is on call for most of the month is like juggling fiery batons. It sounds crazy, but once you get going, you realize that it's not that bad afterall. But clearly it's not something you want to do on a daily basis.
So, my husband took military leave to cover his on-call days, and I flew up to New York with Margot while he got to finally experience the joys of flying alone with two children to Philadelphia so they could be with the in-laws and he could go to his other job as National Guardsman.
All this still meant leaving Margot for almost a full day with Liz's lovely babysitter. And a bottle.
Bottles are not yet Margot's friend, and in fact, I consider them to be more of her arch nemesis. She sees them and starts screaming and biting them, and most people (except me) all but give up. And since she's really not eating any food yet, save a bunch of tissues and granola crumbs off the floor, she pretty much relies solely on the boob.
And that, my friends, is getting a little old. And not just because with every suckle, I'm clearly losing hard-to-come-by breast tissue. Even worse, I can't really go anywhere alone for longer than a few hours.
Lately I've been trying to give her a bottle a day on my own to prepare her, and to help allow me to get some breaks. And while she still fights it, she's taken up to 6 oz at a time from the special boobie bottle. But it's still not pretty and I was still reallllllllly nervous leaving her with a bunch of frozen bags of breastmilk.
Let's face it. Giving a kid frozen peas who is used to picking them right from the vine and popping them into her mouth can be a little precarious of a situation. It's still the same thing, but I just don't think it tastes exactly the same.
I'd never actually flown with frozen breastmilk before, and almost didn't since I left it sitting on our porch. That's what you get for only ever traveling with boobs and not bags of milk. It's pretty hard to forget your boobs.
Thank God for that or I probably would.
But thanks to a load of awesome Twitter advice (thanks girls!), I had it packed to perfection, and the precious cargo that I painstakingly pumped daily made it to a freezer in Brooklyn.
And wouldn't you know, aside from the screaming that ensued when I left, she drank ALL 12 + ounces of milk that I left, napped for two hours, and was soundly asleep for bedtime when I got back.
I mastered the art of the trusty, boob disfiguring hand pump, and all was well with the world.
Well, except my flaming sinuses and burning red eyeballs thanks to the cute Mom-101 kitties.
But before this, I'd have thought it was nothing short of a miracle.
But sometimes, a little trial by fire, and letting go can do wonders.
And a really great reason to do it doesn't hurt either.
Do you recognize these lovely ladies?