Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Mommy Politics

Whether democrat or republican, libertarian or independent, partisan or non-partisan, political agendas disappear when your baby is in need. You may need healthcare to cover vaccinations, or maybe you can't afford the only formula that does not cause severe allergic reactions in your child. OR maybe you are sitting at your desk, doing your business, and suddenly your breast pump stops working.

So that last thing? Yeah, it just happened to me, and it was terrible. It is hard to explain the exact emotions caused by this unfortunate event, but I will try.

As a working mother, you have a lot of guilt. Every hormone - and every God-fearing Christian for that matter - says I shouldn't leave the house each morning and stay away from my child for the next 9 hours. I feel torn apart every time I leave his sweet, smiling face, and I suppress tears at night when I put him down for bed after only getting 2 hours with him. Well guess what folks, here's your reality check: these days, having one income and living comfortably do not go well together. On one income, we make enough to get by on spaghetti and canned goods, but we make "too much" to be eligible for WIC, Medicaid, or food stamps; so we either eat, or pay our mortgage. With two incomes, we have enough to pay bills, eat healthy, and have a little left over to feel comfortable treating Grandma to coffee (or buying a new pair of Enzo Angiolini boots). Quality of life for all of us would be terrible if we were stressed and penny-pinching all the time, so I zip up those fancy boots and click my way into work every day.

Despite all of this, there is one thing I can control and contribute: I can make sure Everett has good food while I am gone. I can pump.

Up until now, I have made lots of excuses for spending money, "It's okay if we buy those Hanna Andersson pajamas because we are saving so much money breastfeeding!" However, we are slowly approaching the end of that reasoning, as the 6 month mark is fast approaching, and solids are in our near future. Then, when your $300.00 pump suddenly dies, you have to ask if it is worth the investment of getting a new one. And of course it is! But I really wanted new Marc Jacobs! I texted Jeff, had an anxiety attack, then did the only logical thing I could think of and walked out of my office.

I think the gal in the office down the hall was a little baffled by my presence in her doorway. I was leaning against the threshold to her personal space and plainly stated, "My pump just broke." It must have been some divine power which inspired me to see her, as she quickly relayed to me that, thanks to Obamacare, our insurance is now required to cover the cost of a pump.

Yes, I had to jump through hoops, and I had two subsequent anxiety attacks from my pursuit of said coverage, but there is no need to relay those anecdotes here. Just know that it involved me standing around Target for 3 hours with milk dripping down my front, and that I was massaging and hand-expressing a clogged duct into a bowl between my legs the next day. None of that matters, because I can still feed my baby.

As I drove home with my new pump riding shotgun, I saw a bumper sticker that said, "Socialism: I work so you don't have to."

No, sir.  
I work so I can feed my baby. I am also helping my coworker feed her twin babies, who will starve if they do not have formula to supplement.

You can insert your claims on how terrible Obamacare is, and how it will ruin our society. However, I am finally seeing payment for what I have invested. I work hard, I work my ASS off, and have done so since I was 16. It's about time I get acknowledged for the work I do, and can partake in the generosity of my beloved home and country, the United States of America.

Precious cargo on board.

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