Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Never Eat Anything Bigger Than Your Head

That's Muffin Man's motto.

Perpetually Pregnant is talking about the pluses and minuses of breast-feeding. And since MM refused catagorically to breast-feed, I felt unequal to the task of commenting there. However, Perpetually Pregnant also mentioned pumping and that is a subject I can speak to.

I pumped for nine months. My "office" at work was a cubicle. I was responsible for finding a quiet, comfortable, private place to express myself. I used empty offices (my boss' while he was in meetings, mostly), empty conference rooms, disused storage closets, bathroom stalls (had to go to a different building to find one with an outlet), and a "lounge" with no door that was in a women's restroom on the third floor of the other building. You'd think that with so many women in the work place this wouldn't be such a pain in the ass.

Anyways, what made it bearable was the hands-free pumping attachments for the Medela (you've got to buy their bra to use it) which enabled me to read while pumping. Which may explain why I still leak a bit (books as let-down cues...hmmm.)

The best part about pumping exclusively is that you don't have to be open for business at 2 in the morning. Mr. Spock took that shift when I went back to work, since he works from home (lucky dog). The worst thing is the feeling of missing out, somehow, on that special bond and, of course, the lack of opportunity to piss people off by nursing in public.

8 comments:

Gerah said...

It drives me batty how un-boob friendly (and un-mom friendly) the workplace still is. Okay, not ALL workplaces, but most.

Phantom Scribbler said...

You STILL leak, and Muffin Man is three? Wow, that's some enthusiastic milk production.

I have nothing but admiration for women who pump. I had to with LG for awhile (long story involving mastitis and scabs, too gross to go into) and I HATED it.

Maybe it's better if you can read while you pump. Meh. I doubt it.

Angry Pregnant Lawyer said...

First off, you pumped for nine months? Wow, go you!!!

Second, it's a shame that so many offices are clueless when it comes to what women need (let alone want) when it comes to pumping. I know some offices have a "New Mom's Room," with a couch, a little fridge, and some magazines or a radio, which is awesome. Just having my own office (with a door!) worked fine for me (although I've heard horror stories of male coworkers just walking in on pumping women without knocking--ugh, idiots). Our secretaries, though, don't have offices--just "stations," so I don't know where they'd go if they had to pump. I suppose I'd offer my tiny office, if it came to that! Breastfeeding simply is not an option for so many women that I feel if a woman wants to breastfeed (including pumping), we should see to it that she can.

SuzanH said...

Wow. Nine months? I managed 2 before I just couldn't hack it any more.

Would also have loved to nurse in public just on principle.

Angie said...

How very refreshing to hear someone who didn't mind pumping and did so for so long! Good on you! :-)

liz said...

Hey, angie, I didn't say I didn't mind....

And I felt so bad when he didn't want to nurse that I assauged my guilt/inadequacy feelings by pumping. Also, it sort of helped ease the guilt of leaving him in daycare. Y'know?

Suzanne said...

Another pumper here, but I didn't last nearly as long as you did. So my guilty feelings were assuaged only for a while...

Genevieve said...

I did it for six months (daytime only -- nursed in the morning and at night).

I had my own office with a door, and got a lock put on it before I went out on maternity leave, so no one would walk in on me.

My colleague directly across the (tiny) hall was also pumping at the same time, so we had camaraderie (and a "dump the pump" mini-party when the kids turned 1).

My friend who worked in a cube went to the dedicated pumping room. Yay, government employer!