Monday, November 12, 2012

Mother's Milk, Donating Life.

I'm pretty thankful, most of the time, about everything and everyone in my life.

I guess November is National Be Thankful Month for everyone else too! It's good to be thankful. It's good to give.

While many food banks across the nation are looking for donations to feed families, there is another 'food' bank looking for the same thing. Except, instead of just feeding families, it's looking for the donation of life.

While the topic of breastfeeding seems to generate a lot of passion in people. Both for and against. It was one of the surprising questions that I got asked when I was pregnant-"Are you going to nurse?" Was something that popped out of not just women's mouths, but men. (Even some men my husband knew, asked him if I planned on doing it.)

I have never taken offense to this. I read up a lot on nursing. While I didn't find it to be as "romantic" as I've read it described, I did find (after a struggling period in the beginning) it to be quite easy and relaxing. 

With my first, I also developed a relationship with my breast pump. (I would say love/hate is a good description!) I went back to working part time after I had him, and so I pumped. I was able to breast and bottle feed him for 13 months. I had a lot of milk stored up in the freezer. 

After he was weaned, I found he wouldn't drink anything from the freezer. So, I threw it out. (Probably about 50 oz.) If you've ever pumped milk, you know, you basically cry if any gets spilled or lost. Especially in the early stages of a newborns life. I think the first time I thawed out a bag and found it leaked all over my fridge, I seriously had a mental break down and cried. It was 4 oz. Of literally, spilt milk.
Yep, Me!
After my daughter was born, she proved to be the breastfeeding champ. I never went back to work after having her. I still pumped, and a lot, because originally that wasn't the plan. I was planning to work part time. I woke up early and pumped when I could. I had a great supply the second time around as well!

She was reluctant to take a bottle though. She wasn't really going to fall for that trick, especially if she knew mom was anywhere within a 5 mile radius of the house. She's a funny kid. 

Anyway, so there I was, with a freezer full of milk, that she hardly ever drank. We tried plan sippy cups, mixing it with stuff, anything you could imagine. She just didn't particularly want to use it. I breast fed her for a loooooooong time.
Donated Mother's Milk Bags*

My frozen breast milk that had been stored up in our freezer, was a ton! I couldn't BARE to throw it away. It was way too much! I remembered seeing a piece on the Today Show about donated breast milk, and then I remembered a family member had done the same with hers. She donated a big cooler's worth! An amount I wouldn't even come close too! I took to google immediately and found The Mother's Milk Bank of Denver. This place is AMAZING!

For a short video of how it helps, click here! 
I called and did my screening over the phone and talked to a nurse and found out I was able to donate my milk. I had the option of either shipping it to them, or if I could get to Denver, Colorado, I could just drop it off. (They did need blood samples, just to do testing to make sure you're healthy! But they take care of all that, or help you arrange it in your home town, to ship to them. They won't just leave you hanging, they are there for guidance.)

This was so wonderful! I was able to donate a little over 100 oz. of breast milk that went to help who knows how many families and little ones.

Donated Milk Ready to be Prepared.*
The people that work at the Mother's Milk Bank of Denver, were unbelievably kind and amazing. They have so much gratitude for the people that donate. They get to see first hand, just how much it helps! 

There are a lot of little videos out there, and I'd encourage anyone to watch a two minute video that talks about how much, donated breast milk, can change the life of a little one that is struggling. I know, if it were my own children, I'd hope someone would be able to do this for us. 

So, like I said before in the beginning of this, if you or anyone you know, can donate breast milk, please consider it. Lots of people also need turkeys and "things," this holiday season, but there are also some who need life! 

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I was young and now I'm old, but I have never seen the righteous left all alone, have never seen their children begging for bread. They are always gracious and generous. Their children are a blessing.
Psalms 37:25-26

More Giving ideas or stories? Click below!
Photographer Love, Library Fine, Coffee Dates, Encouragement in a Balloon

*Photos were taken off a video from 9News Denver*

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