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DALE

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Tyler most likely won’t tell you this story from Avett’s first night in the NICU. (but I have permission to do so)

After a c-section that morning, Avett was born at 7:40am. On his first day, Avett didn’t put in his lunch or dinner order in time, so he didn’t have meals lined up. (of course, I’m kidding)

His first meal was Tyler’s breastmilk. Having breastfed Scout for her first two years, Tyler was confident that she would be able to supply Avett with all he needed. And while he did have his first meal earthside via his mama, in the middle of the night, the nurses had to supplement his next feeding with donor milk.

First of all, to all the mamas out there who donate milk, thank you. Seriously, thank you. There are so many emotions and thoughts racing around inside a parent while their child is in the NICU, and to know that your baby is going to be nourished by the sacrifice of another mama is wonderful.

However, I couldn’t help be sense that Tyler felt like she let herself down. And that’s hard for me to take. I can encourage and praise her for so many things, including getting actual milk on day one, but I know the anxiety she faced and disappointment she felt not being able to produce enough for Avett.

It breaks my heart a little because Tyler is as sacrificial a parent as they come.

Let’s just say that’s what drove her to be the super-pump milk queen of Northwest Medical Center this week, haha. I’m not even kidding, this woman and her body somehow defied science and started pumping milk like an old-school milkmaid. All of a sudden, there was a surplus!

nude woman lying in a pile of breastmilk tubes to demonstrate breastfeeding and pumping milk for newborn baby

Avett has had more than enough milk since that first night, and at the rate Tyler is producing and pumping, she will be able to give back in kind for the milk we received. She might even be able to feed a small village.

In my opinion, the best thing about Tyler pumping is a selfish one. For the first time with Scout or Avett, I fed my child breastmilk. Tyler is sharing that oh-so-incredible bonding opportunity with me. I’m more than thankful. What’s a word that means more than thankful? Gracious, and honored, and overjoyed. Thanks, Ty, for giving Avett and me a tremendous gift.

Thanks for being here,
Dale

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