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Friday, June 13, 2008

To Pump Or Not To Pump - Part Deux

I had always wanted to write "To Pump Or Not To Pump - Part Deux" while at UAB,but never got to. I'm sure some of you were anxiously awaiting the sequel! I actually took photos for the post and just didn't get around to writing it, so here goes! Better late than never!

While at UAB, I mentioned pumping all during the day to maintain my milk supply for Victoria. I thought you might find some photos of the rooms I went to interesting. It was a very nice set up for those of us who had to utilize the rooms so frequently. This place became somewhat of a second home for me while Victoria was in such critical condition.

Just down the hallway from the RNICU (the first unit that Victoria was in) was the Lactation Center. Once you entered the center you had to sign-in. I would write down my name and the time I entered the center for their records. I would then proceed to one of the two rooms set up for pumping moms. There was a lock on the door to which you had to punch in a code.

Upon entering the room, you would see two curtains hanging from the ceiling that could be pulled to conceal the pumping mom in her chair by her pump. As you sat in the chair having the life sucked out of you, you would stare at one of two things in front of your face ... your pump or a huge picture of a baby nursing. Looking at pictures like that are supposed to stimulate your milk supply. Isn't that interesting? I'm assuming it worked for me because my milk supply never dropped. In fact, I had a huge bag in the freezer of small bottles of milk. The nurses that cared for Victoria always commented on my milk supply doing so well.

Just so you get the feeling of being in my shoes, I took several pictures of what I saw as I sat in my chair.

Right in front of me I saw my pump which sat on top of a file cabinet-type piece of furniture.

Then looking a little downward, I saw the tubes running from my pump to the breast shields.

Next, looking completely down at my chest, I saw what looked to be a get-up from a Madonna concert. Enough said. Let the pictures show all!

As I look back on our experiences at UAB, I have to say that my favorite comical post was the one concerning pumping. For such a stressful time, it was definitely some much needed comic relief. I mean, you have to find the rainbows during the rain storms of life and for me, the rainbow was more of a suction device that could be used for torture in medieval times.

Who's to say that rainbows are always something that will initially make you laugh or smile? Our rainbows might be masked by pain or discomfort. You just endure the pain and you find something funny there.

Pump on!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Several of my co-workers pump at work twice a day for their little ones. Unfortunately for them, their privacy comes in the form of a storage closet and they hang a 'secret' sign to indicate the closet is occupied while they are 'in service'. I must say that I am amazed by modern technology because their pump equipment looks like a little lunch sack/backpack. I would have never guessed..until they told me. Anywho - I understand women are lucky to have a good flow: liquid gold as they call it. One of my co-workers said the only thing she could think of saving when a power outage hit was the breast milk she stored in her freezer. She rushed it to a local hotel and asked if they could store it...only to learn later they'd let it sit out and she lost it all. That was over 3 years ago and she STILL talks about it with such anguish...as she is now breastfeeding her 2nd baby.

Anyway, thanks for keeping us all in the loop as always...and keep up the great work pumping that liquid gold. :)