Sweet Pea Births

Chandler, Arizona

Sweet Pea Births

...celebrating every swee​t pea their birth

Blog

In Their Own Words: Courtney

Posted on August 26, 2016 at 7:08 AM
"In Their Own Words" is a blog series we share to bring you "real life" experiences from other mothers and their families.  Would you like to share your story? Please email me at krystyna{at}sweetpeabirths{dot}com to get started.

Birthing From Within and Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: convenient to Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson

Today we are featuring a Q&A we did with one of our pumping and working-out-of-the-home mothers. She shares her insight gained from pumping for both of her sweet peas, for a combined total of 34 months...and counting.

What was your vision of what pumping at work was going to entail?
I thought I knew what pumping at work was going to be like. I thought it would be a nice break in my day to sit and think about my baby. It was inconvenient and awkward to constantly explain myself. I had read all these books about breastfeeding, gone to support groups, talked to a Lactation consultant, talked to friends, and when it came down to it, I still had to find my own way. 

All the knowledge helped, but each relationship and situation is unique. I knew it was going to be work, and I knew that I could do it. I didn't realize how long I would be doing it. 2 years. I pumped at work for nearly 2 years.

I think that the most important step of the journey was making the commitment and educating myself. The most important part of making that successful was being surrounded by people that supported that commitment, and talking about it.

What was the reality?
At first, I was lucky. I worked with a group of women who were extremely supportive, including my best friend, who was still pumping for her son, 7 months older than my daughter. We brought in a couch, and ate lunch one handed, pumping side by side, while chatting with our colleagues, who breastfed their children. This gave me confidence that I didn't realize I would need later. Everything was normal.

What I didn't count on was leaving that job and starting over at a new school. I knew that I would pump when I went back to work, but I never really thought about how long I would do it. My daughter was 9 months old when I started at my new school. Though still supportive, there was no couch and no camaraderie. I was isolated and lonely. At about 12 months, I was starting to hate it. I would pump in my car, but hooking up with the stupid hands-free bra in a car that had been sitting in the sun all day while trying not to expose myself to passers-by. What a sweaty, frustrating ordeal. But! I kept doing it until she was nearly 2, sometimes cursing about it, but I did it.

Who did you have to talk to to make it happen?
Empowered by the ease of my first experience with pumping at work, in my new school, I knew what I was entitled too, but most of all, I was open about talking to people about pumping and breastfeeding, especially  the”extended” relationship. I wrote a very professional, informed, and informative email that sent to the entire Administrative team at the high school where I teach. My principal thanked me for the information that I provided and we even chatted for awhile about the inequity of motherhood in the workplace and how we both hope to see it change in our lifetime. As a single guy, he had never thought about it. I developed a view of myself as an advocate and found ways to normalize and  remove the stigma of  breastfeeding and pumping at work for an extended time. The more I talked about it frankly with those around me, the less I got a reaction; which I think is awesome! That's normalizing, right? Now that I am pumping for my 2nd child, my co-workers don’t bat an eyelash when I say, “I'll be back in 20. Going to make lunch for my son.”

What kind of provision did your employer make; and was it easy, or did you have to push hard?
I took the lead on advocating for myself in the workplace. I took the attitude of, “If I walk in like I own the place, no one will question me.” When I wrote my email to my administrators and had follow up conversations, I made sure to be informed and provide links to state and federal information, guidelines, and statutes that supported me. I informed my administrators of what was legally expected of them and what I was entitled to. I also provided them with my pumping schedule, and the location that I planned to pump. It was more like, “this is what I’m doing, and this is why you have to let me.” It wasn’t that I expected backlash. I wanted to be clear and straightforward.
My department head was very accommodating in scheduling my prep period for a time that was best for me to space out my pumping. I believe that all of this seemed “easy” because I was well informed and took the role of educating and informing my workplace, advocating for myself, and for other mothers in the future. I didn’t expect them to know what to do, and I didn’t expect anyone to change they way they went about their day to accommodate my needs. My commitment to my child would come first if there were any issues, but there were not.

What kind of support did your partner provide that was helpful?
My partner is extremely supportive, but didn’t quite get why I feel dejected when he would tell me “just pump” when I was trying to schedule my life around feeding my baby. We talked about it, and I explained rather than getting frustrated and shutting down. I would describe how frustrating it was to try to hook up to my pump in the car, in the heat, with a hands-free bra, and a nursing cover, or how I couldn’t do “x” because it was too close to feeding time, or wouldn’t allow me time to feed... and then I ran across an ad for the Freemie on Facebook! He bought me a set. I loved it. Then I complained that I had to wash them every day, and he bought me a second set, so I didn’t have to wash them every day. Best. Husband. Ever.

How much time should a mom plan for each pumping session? Any tips for better/easier letdown?
I usually pump for about 15 minutes. If I reflect on how I got to that, I started by pumping until I wasn’t ejecting any more milk. That would usually take about 20-25 minutes, which was about the length of my commute to work. I discovered that I was pumping more than the baby was eating, I would end up engorged on the weekends. I cut down to 15 minutes and now I end up about even with what baby consumes while I am gone.
To trigger letdown, at first I would just talk about my baby with my colleagues. Especially pumping side-by-side with another momma, let down was not difficult to achieve. Now, I start to let down a few minutes before I start pumping. When I changed schools, it was a little more difficult. I didn’t have that camaraderie any more. On more stressful days, it would take a little longer to trigger letdown. On these days, I sit quietly, turn off distractions, and breathe. Looking at pictures hasn’t worked for me in the past, but closing my eyes and visualizing nursing my baby has helped.

How long did you make the pumping commitment work - how did that match your expectations?
When we decided to breastfeed my husband and I talked about it. I wanted to do at least a year, but thought about continuing the more I learned about extended breastfeeding. Hubby was super supportive of extended breastfeeding, so I made the commitment to nurse as long as my daughter wanted to. I ended up weaning her when I became pregnant. She and I made it 22 months. I am now on month 12 of nursing and pumping for my son. I know that I probably sound like an ad for Freemie, but with Freemie, I don’t see myself stopping until he’s not nursing during the day anymore.

What words of advice would you give to someone who is ready to go back to work and wants to pump for their baby?
Be informed. Inform others. Have a plan. Have a backup plan. Keep perspective. This is for your baby, everybody else can take a number. You are legally protected. Get comfortable saying things like “expressing milk” and “breastfeeding” to complete strangers. They don’t understand euphemisms. I’ve pumped in many places that weren’t schools and I’ve never been told that they couldn’t help me. I hope it was because I was confident and informed. If I were being completely truthful, I smiled inside when I saw someone squirm. I thought to myself, “I’m making them change. This is good.” This is your right and my right to provide for our children. The more we make people uncomfortable, the more comfortable they become and the more “normal” feeding babies breastmilk will be for future generations.

As for the bottle, ask friends to borrow different types of bottles before you spend a fortune. Both of our kids like the Dr. Browns bottles, but that isn’t what we had a full set of. . .
I took twelve weeks off with both of my kids. With my daughter (first born) we tried a bottle with her the week before I went back. This was not soon enough because she wouldn’t take a bottle and I went to my first day back thinking, “my baby isn’t going to eat.” She did, and everything was fine, but I was stressed, which made it harder to pump and made it harder for me to do my job. I think even two weeks out would have been good. 

Don’t be the one to give baby the bottle. Have a partner, friend, or family member do it so the baby will actually try. I had to leave the house to get my daughter to even attempt a bottle. From our experience, don’t wait until they are starving. Giving a crying baby a bottle for the first time didn’t work out for us.

Bottom line? Be confident. Be informed. Inform others. Find your path. Ask for help. Be an advocate.


Thank you to Courtney for sharing her breastfeeding journey today <3 I hope it has touched you and inspired you in some way, and that you will take heart and courage in your own breastfeeding journey.

UPCOMING EVENTS:
Phoenix La Leche League: Live, Latch, Love
As part of the LLL area conference
August 26th, 5-7 PM
Embassy Suites Biltmore
 
La Leche League Conference
August 26-28, 2016
Embassy Suites Biltmore

Birthing From Within and Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: convenient to Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson
Disclaimer: 
The material included in this blog is for informational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog and related videos contain information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of Birthing From Within or The Bradley Method®. The views contained in this video and on our blog do not necessarily reflect those of Birthing From Within, The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

Categories: Breast Pumps, Breast Pumps and Workplace, Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding Awareness Month, Breastfeeding Challenges, Breastfeeding support, In Their Own Words, Nursing, Nursing and Maternity Bras, World Breastfeeding Week

Post a Comment

Oops!

Oops, you forgot something.

Oops!

The words you entered did not match the given text. Please try again.

41 Comments

Reply adidas yeezy
9:59 PM on October 17, 2021 
My wife and i felt absolutely comfortable when Edward managed to conclude his homework from your ideas he had from your very own web page. It's not at all simplistic just to find yourself making a gift of helpful tips which usually most people might have been selling. And now we know we need the blog owner to thank for this. The main illustrations you've made, the simple web site navigation, the relationships you will make it easier to create - it's everything superb, and it's helping our son and our family consider that this article is satisfying, and that is really pressing. Many thanks for all the pieces!
adidas yeezy http://www.yeezysadidas.us
Reply off white outlet
6:12 AM on October 24, 2021 
I wanted to construct a note so as to express gratitude to you for the precious ways you are posting on this site. My incredibly long internet lookup has at the end of the day been paid with excellent insight to go over with my friends and classmates. I would claim that most of us visitors actually are quite lucky to live in a great website with so many special individuals with very beneficial tactics. I feel really fortunate to have seen your webpages and look forward to so many more awesome moments reading here. Thanks once again for all the details.
off white outlet http://www.offwhiteoutlet.us.org
Reply curry shoes
8:46 PM on March 19, 2022 
I as well as my guys ended up checking the best tactics located on the blog and then all of a sudden came up with an awful suspicion I had not expressed respect to the blog owner for them. Most of the boys appeared to be joyful to see them and have now absolutely been enjoying them. Thank you for getting simply kind as well as for considering variety of tremendous issues millions of individuals are really desirous to be aware of. Our sincere apologies for not expressing gratitude to you earlier.
curry shoes http://www.curry-6.us
Reply kyrie irving
8:47 PM on March 19, 2022 
I'm just writing to make you know what a beneficial experience my cousin's princess had browsing your site. She learned many issues, with the inclusion of what it is like to have a very effective coaching style to let folks without difficulty know a number of impossible subject matter. You undoubtedly exceeded readers' desires. Thanks for distributing these priceless, trusted, educational and even cool thoughts on the topic to Kate.
kyrie irving http://www.kyrieirvingshoes.us.com
Reply yeezy
8:47 PM on March 19, 2022 
Thank you for every one of your efforts on this web page. Gloria enjoys managing investigation and it's easy to understand why. Most of us notice all relating to the dynamic means you produce reliable tips and hints on this web blog and encourage participation from visitors on that content plus our own princess has been learning a whole lot. Take advantage of the remaining portion of the year. Your carrying out a wonderful job.
yeezy http://www.yeezyboost380.us.com
Reply kyrie 6
8:48 PM on March 19, 2022 
I simply wished to appreciate you yet again. I am not sure what I might have created in the absence of the type of points documented by you concerning my subject matter. This was the depressing situation for me, nevertheless spending time with this well-written avenue you treated the issue took me to leap for fulfillment. I am grateful for the support and have high hopes you realize what a great job that you're carrying out instructing the rest via your blog post. I know that you've never met any of us.
kyrie 6 http://www.kyrie-6.com
Reply golden goose
8:49 PM on March 19, 2022 
I am commenting to make you know of the fine experience my cousin's child encountered reading through yuor web blog. She figured out several details, most notably what it is like to have an excellent giving style to have most people clearly master various tortuous subject areas. You undoubtedly surpassed my desires. Thank you for producing such good, dependable, edifying and in addition easy thoughts on your topic to Tanya.
golden goose http://www.golden-goose.us
Reply irving shoes
8:49 PM on March 19, 2022 
Thanks for all of your efforts on this site. Ellie loves working on research and it's really easy to see why. All of us notice all concerning the dynamic means you produce useful solutions via the web site and as well as welcome response from website visitors on the subject matter while our child is without a doubt studying so much. Enjoy the rest of the year. You are always carrying out a glorious job.
irving shoes http://www.kyrieirving-shoes.us.com
Reply kd shoes
8:49 PM on March 19, 2022 
My husband and i have been so satisfied Jordan managed to do his inquiry using the ideas he received when using the site. It's not at all simplistic to just choose to be giving for free ideas which some people might have been selling. So we consider we need you to appreciate because of that. These explanations you made, the simple blog navigation, the relationships you can help create - it's mostly spectacular, and it's really assisting our son and us understand that article is entertaining, which is rather essential. Thanks for the whole thing!
kd shoes http://www.kevindurant-shoes.us.com
Reply lebron james shoes
8:39 PM on March 30, 2022 
I needed to post you one very small observation so as to say thanks a lot again for all the splendid tips you've shown on this page. It has been really seriously open-handed with people like you to deliver freely what a number of us would've made available as an e book in order to make some profit for their own end, specifically seeing that you could have tried it in case you considered necessary. Those ideas also served like a fantastic way to fully grasp that the rest have the identical desire just as mine to realize way more regarding this matter. I think there are a lot more fun instances up front for folks who looked at your blog post.
lebron james shoes http://www.lebron18.net
Reply jordan 11
8:41 PM on March 30, 2022 
I'm also commenting to make you know of the beneficial experience my princess encountered viewing the blog. She mastered a good number of things, most notably what it is like to have a marvelous teaching spirit to make the rest completely fully grasp specific extremely tough things. You truly did more than our own expected results. I appreciate you for distributing those priceless, trustworthy, educational as well as cool guidance on that topic to Jane.
jordan 11 http://www.jordan11retro.us.com
Reply bape clothing
8:42 PM on March 30, 2022 
I simply wanted to appreciate you all over again. I do not know what I could possibly have tried without these smart ideas documented by you concerning this industry. It previously was a very alarming problem in my circumstances, however , understanding the well-written fashion you handled the issue made me to weep for gladness. Now i'm happy for the service and even believe you know what a powerful job that you're accomplishing teaching other individuals through the use of your web site. Most probably you've never encountered any of us.
bape clothing http://www.bape-clothing.us
Reply retro jordans
8:42 PM on March 30, 2022 
Thanks a lot for providing individuals with such a special possiblity to read critical reviews from here. It's usually very superb plus stuffed with a lot of fun for me personally and my office colleagues to visit your site at minimum three times in 7 days to read through the fresh secrets you have. And of course, we are usually motivated with your fantastic inspiring ideas you serve. Selected two tips in this posting are really the very best I have had.
retro jordans http://www.jordan-retro.us.com
Reply kd shoes
5:01 PM on June 24, 2022 
I simply wanted to compose a simple message in order to say thanks to you for those remarkable tips and hints you are sharing on this site. My time-consuming internet search has now been paid with wonderful details to share with my colleagues. I 'd express that we site visitors are very much endowed to dwell in a great place with many awesome professionals with good tactics. I feel rather lucky to have come across the webpage and look forward to really more amazing moments reading here. Thank you once more for a lot of things.
kd shoes http://www.kd13shoes.us
Reply jordan shoes
8:54 AM on June 28, 2022 
I want to express my appreciation to the writer for rescuing me from this particular challenge. Because of checking through the internet and seeing solutions which are not pleasant, I was thinking my life was gone. Living devoid of the approaches to the issues you have resolved by way of the guideline is a critical case, as well as those which might have in a wrong way damaged my career if I hadn't noticed your blog. Your mastery and kindness in taking care of every part was invaluable. I am not sure what I would have done if I hadn't come upon such a stuff like this. I am able to at this point look forward to my future. Thank you very much for the expert and results-oriented guide. I won't be reluctant to endorse the sites to anyone who ought to have guide on this area.
jordan shoes http://www.jordan11retro.us.com
Reply chrome hearts outlet
8:29 PM on June 29, 2022 
I want to show some appreciation to you just for bailing me out of such a challenge. Because of scouting throughout the world wide web and finding basics which were not powerful, I assumed my entire life was done. Existing minus the solutions to the difficulties you've resolved through your entire post is a critical case, and the ones which may have in a negative way damaged my career if I had not noticed your web blog. Your primary know-how and kindness in maneuvering the whole lot was tremendous. I'm not sure what I would've done if I hadn't discovered such a point like this. I can also at this time look forward to my future. Thanks very much for this professional and sensible guide. I will not hesitate to refer your blog to anybody who would need guidelines about this subject.
chrome hearts outlet http://www.chromeheartstoreonline.com
Reply moncler outlet
7:13 AM on July 1, 2022 
I must voice my passion for your generosity giving support to those individuals that require assistance with that theme. Your personal commitment to getting the solution all-around ended up being amazingly insightful and have continuously made professionals just like me to get to their dreams. Your new informative guide can mean so much to me and additionally to my colleagues. With thanks; from all of us.
moncler outlet http://www.moncler--outlet.us.com
Reply off-white
7:05 PM on July 2, 2022 
Thank you a lot for giving everyone an exceptionally pleasant chance to read articles and blog posts from this website. It is always so pleasing and also jam-packed with a good time for me and my office fellow workers to visit your site a minimum of 3 times every week to study the fresh guides you will have. And indeed, I'm just usually satisfied with your tremendous methods you serve. Selected two facts on this page are in reality the simplest we've ever had.
off-white http://www.off-whiteoutlet.us.com
Reply kevin durant shoes
7:03 AM on July 4, 2022 
Thanks a lot for providing individuals with remarkably spectacular possiblity to read critical reviews from here. It really is very awesome and also full of a good time for me and my office peers to visit the blog really three times in a week to study the fresh guidance you have got. Not to mention, I'm just usually fascinated with your special points you give. Selected two points in this post are basically the most effective I've ever had.
kevin durant shoes http://www.kevindurantshoes.us.com
Reply golden goose outlet
5:41 PM on July 5, 2022 
I happen to be commenting to make you be aware of what a magnificent discovery our princess went through reading yuor web blog. She learned lots of issues, which include what it's like to possess an amazing giving character to make certain people with no trouble learn about various tortuous matters. You truly exceeded people's expected results. I appreciate you for showing such good, dependable, revealing and also unique thoughts on this topic to Julie.
golden goose outlet http://www.goldengooseoutletstore.com