Sunday, September 28, 2014

Milk Sharing

**The photo below may make some people uncomfortable, I apologize if you are one of those people, but you have been warned. Please note there is nothing "inappropriate" (i.e.:nipples) that can be seen in the photo**

Milk sharing is something not commonly heard of in our society. 

Yet there are thousands of families out there (desperately) searching for other nursing mothers to give breast milk to their child (either from pumping or wet-nursing, though pumping is most common).
I have donated several random times in the past when the Little Jedi was nursing and the thankfulness from the mother picking up the milk is plane as dawn to see in their eyes.

I decided that since the Rebel Princess is nursing and I plan to nurse her for as long as she wants to (same as with the Little Jedi, who self weaned at 23 months) that I will be pumping and donating regularly to a family.
The day I made the decision to donate milk to a family I got on Facebook and went to my cities local Human Milk For Human Babies page giving details and said if there was a family interested to message me and we could talk more. 
My inbox was flooded with hopeful mothers looking for a regular donor, mothers poring their hearts out telling me their story hoping that they were the lucky first person to get "dibs" on the spot. It broke my heart a little to see such a great need and so little supply (no pun intended) to fill it.

I wish that I was one of those mothers who could pump 20+ ounces a day and help multiple families, but I'm not. 
I wish that it wasn't so hard for these families to find breast milk for their babies, but it is.
 There are "milk banks" but those are ridicules. Mothers like me  DONATE their milk to the bank (and receive nothing in return), then the milk bank takes that FREE milk they received and SELL it for over $1 per ounce to these families! It's wrong.

I don't pump and donate milk to get a pat on the back or anything like that. 
I do it because it is something I believe in. It's a small way that I can show love and compassion towards at least two strangers (mom and baby). I do it because I know if I were in their place I would hope that there would be a 'me' out there to come and help because I believe it is what is best for my child.

Today the family that I will be donating milk to regularly picked up what I had for them! 
I am only able to pump about 5 ounces a day (no matter what, sadly) but it totaled to over 70 ounces! 
It's not hard, but it's not easy work either, so I am proud of myself  and hopefully next week and each week to follow will mean a minimum of 30 ounces for the family for weekly pick ups!

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