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At the NICU, there are two private rooms where you can pump milk.

One of the rooms can accommodate two people but this means the awkward task of tapping on the privacy glass and asking if the other mother minds if you join her.

Not my favorite thing to do. But I also can’t stand there for 20 minutes with my c-section pain and wait for an empty room so I always take the plunge.

So today I knocked.

“Hi. Sorry to bother you. But are you in there alone? Would you mind if I came in and pumped with you?” I asked.

“Sure. Come on in.”

“Umm… could I also bring my 5 year-old and 3 year-old in with me?”


“What did she say?” 5 year-old Dylan asks.

“Nothing yet,” I respond.


“We may have to wait,” I explain to Summer and Dylan.


“Are they both girls?” the other mother finally asks.

“Yes, they are both girls and they are very well behaved.” (I mean, they were both just spinning in chairs in the NICU, almost knocking into the incubators and the nurses but I’m sure that was just an anomaly.)

“Ok,” she says reluctantly.

Turns out, Dylan and Summer were quite good.ย  In fact, the mother was very impressed with how they help me set up the pumping equipment with great skill and ease. And since the girls use those sanitizing machines about 40 times each at the hospital, I don’t have to worry about germs.

This mother, along with most of the people in the NICU, can not believe we now have four kids.

They stare and us and say, “Those are all yours?”

But the truth is, even with all the pain and the guilt and the stress right now, I just feel lucky.

Completely lucky.

Because it’s what I’ve always wanted.

mama bird notes:

Thank you all for making me feel completely normal for my feelings of guilt during this time when I’m torn between my big girls and the twins. Your comments really helped me enormously. And my boobs are much better. I knew you wanted to know but were afraid to ask.

41 Responses to you can’t be modest when you’re pumping at the nicu

  • Kathy says:

    I love that your girls are such helpers good thing you had twins they will never have to fight over the babies one for each. Love the picture…girls smiles priceless!

  • I love the photo. Made me all teary. Sorry to hear about the c-section pain, I know from my own experience, correction, from my wife’s experience, that it is nasty as.

    Do something for me. Next time you have to awkwardly knock to use the pump room, say “Do you mind if I bring my children” and when the occupant says “how many are there?” you need to respond:

    “Five. Four rowdy boys and a dog.”

  • vodkamom says:

    Three c-sections LATER I am still rejoicing in the joy. Well , when we’re all not screaming.
    I am so happy for you- and know that this adventure has just begun.
    And yeah- you are ALL adorable.

  • Marinka says:

    Yes, because having a 4 year old boy in the room while you’re pumping would really ruin anything. Next time, bring Rick in there with you. And his father.

  • Wendi says:

    Are you bringing the pump to the Hilton? Because I would love to fall asleep hearing that “wocka wocka” noise.

    You look fabulous.

  • Yup – we always want to know how your boobs are feeling. The blogosphere is weird that way.

    Perhaps you should explain to your new friends that there are many of us who consider 4 kids a mere starter family? And we’re not weird either?

  • Daphne says:

    Glad you are feeling better, boob-wise. I am so happy for you. You look like the picture of the perfect family you have always wanted.

  • Diane says:

    Being let in the Mom of 4 Club is a great accomplishment. Think of all you had to do to get in! And yes – we are all truly blessed to be entrusted with all these little angels.

  • Betsy says:

    What only 2 moms in the NICU pumping room. In Germany, the room was set up for at least 8 moms at a time. You should feel lucky.

  • Heather says:

    Congratulations! I’m sure it’s tough right now, but you have such a good attitude, and such a beautiful family! Lucky lucky you!!!

  • Jordana says:

    What an absolutely beautiful picture. And the fact that I didn’t even have to ask for a nursing photo makes it even more special ( :

  • Crystal says:

    You are BEAUTIFUL!!! I LOVED nursing my kids…only I didn’t have twins. I didn’t comment earlier about the guilt, but I think every mother of more than one child feels that. You’re AWESOME!! Hey, would Rick be mad if I sent little GA Bulldog things to the kids?

  • So happy that the boobage is restored! That is such a beautiful picture and I love that you ended your post with “Because it’s what I’ve always wanted.” You made my day, Kelcey, pump and all.

  • I think everyone in the damn hospital had seen my boobs by the time we were discharged from the NICU. They had pumping rooms and privacy screen in case you wanted to pump by the babies’ bedside, but 5 weeks later I had lost all modesty, at least in front of all the females.

  • christy says:

    Yeah – so glad you’re feeling better all over! And pumping in front of strangers makes me cringe, but I’ve done it in the hospital too! ugh! Hope your sweet little babies can come home with you soon!

  • So glad your girls are willing to help!
    Oh, and I had mastitis with my third daughter and I bought those IcyHot patches and cut them in shapes to fit the soreness – they helped ease the pain when I was fatigued from “feeling myself up”.

  • I love to hear that people got exactly what they wanted with their kids. I mean – we all “end up” with exactly what we want…but to have the family you always dreamed of sounds like a wish come true and magical in a Disney princess (as opposed to Harry Potter) kind of way.

  • ErinB says:

    there has never been a doubt in our minds that you are grateful!! hoping each day gets a little easier (physically-mentally) and you can really begin to enjoy this journey. love ya xoxo

  • Karen Bland says:

    Oh dear Kelc…..remember back on Bourbon street, everyone was into breasfeeding? Oh wait, that was Mardi Gras…something about beads. Never mind. Wrong breast story. Seriously, I know it’s SO hard. I tell everyone that it took me 3 kids to “get” breastfeeding right (without an infection, etc.) – I finally embraced the idea of a lactation consultant – a woman who gets just a wee bit too close to personal parts. And it took having FOUR kids to not be totally weird and modest about it all. I still don’t use the word “nurse” too frequently – I still say “feed” just so my 9-month old doesn’t get embarrassed by her mom. You rock – Dylan and Summer are probably too dam excited to realize that you are tired – and you have given them the greatest gifts in the world – little siblings. Get some sleep – love all four (five) of those kidos! xxoo

  • Lynn says:

    Oh to have everything you dreamed of! Cherish each and every minute of your beautiful family. Twins become you as you look radiant! If you need any boobie help email as I may be able to help (LLL leader) though it seems like you are doing a fabulous job!

  • Aunt Marcia (Guess Whose?) says:

    Fantastic photo…and Summer still has that beautful sweet little face of an angel. Who do the twins look like? Do they look like each other? Some photos of them both face up…eyes open and smiling please.

  • mayberry says:

    did Dylan grow like a foot? Wow! I know a tiny measure of your guilt–when my big girl was hospitalized for 2 weeks it was awful to be divided between her and my younger kid at home. It’s temporary.

  • What a wonderful photo…I’m sure you’d get that reaction in CA too, but I would love to be in your position. It is funny they asked if they were girls ๐Ÿ™‚ My MIL was a bit freaked out by the pumping.

  • ~Laura says:

    I had my twins first. So, when I brought home my third baby, I felt so guilty! They had been the center of attention for so long. It was tough. You’ll figure things out. Hang in there with the Csection thing. They completely suck. Unfortunately, there’s no way around it. 6 weeks. Just keep repeating 6 weeks and i’ll feel better….

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kelcey kintner