Some articles I’ve read about pumping breast milk at work suggest looking at a photo of your child to help the pumping process. One photo I’ve used is this of William in his high chair at daycare, alert and ready to eat.
There have been some new items put in the Mother’s Room to make it better able to serve the pumping mothers. One of these is a refrigerator directly in the room.
Per our requests, the fridge has a large spacious fridge area and a freezer area, the latter for those women who may want to freeze an ice pack while at work.
A rack with three shelves, coincidentally the same number of shelves as mothers currently pumping, was added so we can put our bags on it. This is a great idea as previously the only non-floor spaces to do so were the couch, which prevented stretching out on it or the small area under the table, which prevented more than one bag from using that area.
Having three nursing moms means that on paper the room is very busy, yet we have schedules so that each mom can pump as the sole occupant of the room. In reality, meetings go over, projects need to be completed under deadlines and several times one or more women have needed to change their time on the fly. One of the mother’s stated that she does not want to share the room if at all possible. The other two of us said we could do so if need be, and when a company wide meeting took up a large portion of our day we did just that. Additionally some days the process goes more smoothly and faster than others, and each of us has found ourselves running over our time and into the next mother’s booked time.
One of the great things about having the other mothers around is that we talk a lot and compare notes. From them I learned about the Spectra pump that I now use, and even that the bottles for that system fit well in my Medela cooler bag, so no need to bring two bags back and forth to work.
There are still some snags to work out. There are some things we’d like to see in the room that are possible, so draping, smaller couch chairs and another table are being added to make separate pumping stations. The draping will also allow one mom to go in and get her things to leave early while another is pumping, a scenario that has already occurred.
The key to a lot of this, besides the resources we have ordered is teamwork. As mothers we already have learned new ways to work as a team within our own family and with teamwork we can do the same here at work. It is especially important for us to do so as in a few months there may be a fourth pumping mom adding to our schedule.