I was that woman. That harried overwhelmed mom of two who can barely get dressed, let alone take a shower. My two boys were five months and 26 months old, and I needed a break.
It was December, and our wedding anniversary was coming up. Back when my second son was born in July, I actually had the amazing brain power to pull off a surprise for my husband. For his birthday, I scored tickets to the Indianapolis Colts/Atlanta Falcons game. I figured this would get me major brownie points with my better half considering he had a deep man crush on Michael Vick, the Falcon’s quarterback. All other football players paled in comparison to Vick, and he couldn’t wait to go see him “in person.” And the bonus for me? The game was on the weekend of our anniversary: December 19.
That weekend loomed over me all fall. How would it feel to not be a slave to naps, feedings, and temper tantrums? We rustled up my parents to man the homefront, and we took off for our big weekend away.
When we arrived in Indianapolis, I was giddy. We can go to dinner whenever we want and actually have a conversation. We can go see a movie. We can sleep in! There was only one little obligation still looming over my head. I was still nursing.
No problem. I loaded up my “Pump in Style,” and planned to just pump enough to be comfortable and throw it all down the drain in one liberating swish. When we got to the hotel, I decided that I would go ahead and get the inevitable over with so that I could enjoy the rest of the evening with no responsibilities.
I set up camp in the living room area of our suite. Plug the pump in. Check. Hook said pump up to both “sides.” Check. Turn pump on. Check. Both sides are pumping away. Check. Milk is a flowin’. Check. Doorbell rings. Uh…check? Husband is going to answer doorbell. No. No. Not check! Husband is opening door. Aahhh! Husband is saying, “Sure, come on in.” Mayday. Mayday. Abort mission!
Now, had I been thinking clearly, I would have turned the pump off, calmly removed both apparati from myself, pulled my shirt down, crossed my arms, and calmly smiled at the hotel attendant. But I wasn’t thinking clearly. Instead, I was only thinking, “STOP! Don’t let this guy in the room. Don’t you remember I’m PUMPING?!” Of course, it was too late for stopping the inevitable. The poor unsuspecting man was already rounding the corner when I stood up, grasped both sides of the pump (still pumping away, mind you), and found myself half naked and face to face with the hotel employee dressed in his finest and bearing clean towels. “Uh…where would you like these ma’am?”
“Oh, just put them in the bathroom. Thanks. [pump pump. swish. pump pump. swish.]”
“Have a nice day, ma’am.” My humility was complete. My dignity was gone. And that guy was probably running down the hall to the breakroom armed with, “You guys are NEVER gonna believe this one…”
Retta Kelley is a wife to one and a mom to three, an English teacher turned stay-at-home mom, and a wannabe writer, interior designer, hand model, and personal shopper. She loves her faith, her cause (international adoption), her family, and oh yeah, her coffee.