Maggie, I vote for you getting all mommy blogger on us. There is a huge void left ever since Salon killed Mothers Who Think. Go fill it!
While I understand that pumping “feels obscene” to you I don’t think it should. I once stumbled in on a co-worker who was using an empty conference room to pump. Nothing was exposed, so I had no idea what she was doing, and wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t asked if I was interrupting something. She smiled and said “Pumping”.
It took me a few seconds to catch on, but I now regret the look of horror that passed over my face. I wanted to explain that I was upset with myself for walking in on her, not because she was doing anything wrong, but I felt I’d already imposed on her privacy enough at that point. Hopefully I made her laugh and helped break up the tedium.
Please not that I did NOT say breastfeeding was obscene. I said pumping felt obscene in a way that breastfeeding does not. Please don't start boob drama here when there's no reason.
And I just happen to like the word ladies. It makes me think of the Dowager Countess sitting around with a Hygeia hooked up to her nipples and that makes me giggle. And I like giggling. Sorry.
Just wanted to say "yay breast milk".
Yup. That is the one nice thing about pumping in a public restroom ... all the random strangers telling you what a great mom you are.
An alternative to a hands-free pumping bra, which is normally a bit pricy and also annoying, is simply an old sports bra with a small hole cut in the nipple, through which you poke the small end of the funnel. My wife does this and finds it comfortable.
It doesn't resolve the problem in this post, which is that you need to get out of your current bra to use it, though.
Sorry, I really wasn't trying to create any boob drama. I understood that you said it felt obscene. What I failed to convey with my anecdote was that the only obscene boob present was me.
That wasn't actually talking to you, Spunky. It was directed at a comment that's since been deleted.
The single worst thing I did when our oldest child was an infant was make a joke when my wife was hooked up to one of those awful electric milking machines. It was an irreverent joke, but she was hurt and I felt (and feel, 9 years later) awful about it. Pumping ain't an easy thing to fit into your day.
Another cheap way to get a hands-free boobsling for breasfeeding is to cut holes in an old bra for the flanges and reinforce the edges of each hole with an unfancy stitch job. I am not handy with a sewing machine, but I was able to get that to work for my partner. Call it a bra-hack and it too can be "very BoingBoing."
When I was pumping, I really dug the PumpEase bra... bandeau... thingy. It goes on overtop of a nursing bra, but not as awkwardly as the zipper ones, and you can sneak it on without taking your arms out of your sleeves, even. You can put it on and then unhook the nursing bra after if you don't want to whip out your whole boob. The all-in-one bra looks pretty sweet; this is a slightly cheaper option. Although god knows after shelling out for a decent electric pump, the bras seem cheap by comparison. I'm so glad I'm not beholden to my electric milking machine any more, pumping is so high-maintenance even with the best gadgets to help out.
My kid is 16 now, so it's been a while, but if I could travel back in time and do one thing different as a new mom, I would haul my ass down to Macy's or the local great underwear store, have a lingerie lady measure me and purchase several beautiful, proper nursing bras. I saw all the pregnancy and nursing clothing to be things I'd wear so little that I didn't want to invest in them. Also, boobs got so huge that I think I was afraid to know my actual size. Anyway, just do it, your old boobs aren't ever going to be same. Just toss the old bras. Get some lovely nursing bras. And when you stop go buy some super sexy new ones.
As I am set to give birth in 6 weeks, this article is incredibly timely and helpful - thanks!
One thing that drove me nuts was that you could find maternity business wear, bathing suits, and even formal gowns, but nursing-specific clothing was basically t-shirts and bras with a few nightgowns.
I can still remember the all-day annual meeting I attended with a few-weeks-old baby (a secretary who knew us personally stayed with her in a nearby room and I came out during breaks to nurse): the only outfit I could find with nursing potential was Pepto-Bismol pink with a satin gross-grain ribbon lining the nursing flap. Me in a room full of dark-suited men, in that dress.
But the pumping options were even worse back then, so this was the best solution I could find.
Just a suggestion for mothers-to-be - if you have issues breast feeding and or pumping, you can sometime rent the high end pumping machines from the hospital or a Le Leche League. They tend to work better and provide a better user experience than some of the cheaper ones.
Also, my understanding is that one of the Obamacare mandates is that your insurance company has to cover the cost of a breast pump, whether rental or purchase. You'll need to get a prescription for it from your doctor and you'll have to buy/rent it from a place that is pre-approved by the insurance company, but it saved us $200+ so there you go.
Indeed. My wife had been using the basic model, but her work had three nursing mothers and so decided to buy a hospital-grade one. She went from producing 5 oz. in 20 minutes to producing 10 oz. in 10 minutes -- a world of difference for her, and she only uses the model at home now in dire circumstances.
Wait until Rush Limbaugh hears about that.
God yes, that's beautiful. Because you can buy a manual pump for $30, but it does. not. work.