October 28th, 2010


business travel & the boobs

I'm stressing about a potential business trip coming up in early December... a quarterly review with a supplier. I missed the one in May because I was too pregnant, and my doctor said I was not allowed to be more than two hours away from my hospital. We canceled August. And now there's this one coming up. In the past we've always stayed two days because it's out of town and we fly commercial and all that.

When we travel as a group, we travel as a group. There's one rental car. We're escorted everywhere in these facilities. We go to dinner as a group. There's no "hang out by yourself alone" time. This makes lactating a bit complicated. I can't sneak off and pump, I'm going to have to Make Arrangements. It'll be noticable.

And if we stay overnight, I'll have to pump 4-5 times a day, and just dump all the milk. And Josie will have to eat freezer stash... Marc will have to take the time to heat up a bottle for her 3am feeding. Gaaaah.

I'm thinking about not going. I mean, we'll be covered, I don't have to go, I can likely get the information I need from other folks. It just sucks because I enjoy traveling for work. I also feel like I'm plunging into this stereotype about working moms not being as dedicated. I'm really afraid that the guys are going to think I want to stay home for emotional reasons, because I'll just miss my baby way too much... in truth I'd kinda love a night away from the baby! She still doesn't sleep through the night... I wonder if my body even remembers solid sleep?

Every time I've missed something this summer, people have pinned it on these abstract bullshit reasons instead of understanding that it's a physical issue. Like, I physically make milk! And I physically had a baby! When Josie was like two weeks old a friend of mine said I should come to her house and pick some stuff up, I told her that wasn't practical and asked if she could come drop it off. She was like, "Well we'll work something out eventually I'm sure I bet it's hard for you to get out these days, packing a diaper bag and all!" She was serious. I started to type back, "Actually it's got nothing to do with diapers, I'm afraid to leave the house because I just went to pee and a monster blood clot fell out of me onto my bathroom floor, and I'm not sure how you'd react to something like that if it happened in your house. And if I sit on a car seat for more than fifteen minutes I'm in tears from the swelling that starts back up around my stitches. Toodles!"

I didn't send her that. I just left it at my previous "this week is bad" response.

I guess maybe I shouldn't care what people think. I shouldn't have to explain the logistics of breastfeeding to every engineer on this project. I should just tell them "sorry, I can't get away yet" and if they think it's my touchy-feely womanhood, fine. And maybe if I explained it, they still wouldn't really be with me on my decision to stay home... after all pumping five times a day isn't impossible. Just very very annoying. And taking time away from the group will be awkward, especially since I can't make it discrete like I do at the office. But it's possible.

I just don't want to do it. Maybe I'm not committed enough to my project.

Part of me misses the thoughtless days.