I find myself writing posts about bad Monday’s quite often, if I look back to previous posts anyway. Is that a me thing or do most people have Mondays that are absolutely terrible?
You do? Well top this!
Work started with a function, which was fine I was prepared. The day passed by relatively quickly – till 10, wait a minute… did I say quickly? I lied. I went to express (I am still breastfeeding Daniel) and found out that half my breast-pump was at home – the electric half. The half of the pump that made it work. Now if you are not a breastfeeding, working mommy you might not know that your boobs turn to stones when they are full and need to be “pumped” or that this is actually quite painful. You also might not know that they (boobs) leak during this time and in case you hadn’t already guessed – this sucks!
I think I was momentarily in shock.
And then – I did the only thing I could think of to do next… Instead of crying of spilled milk. I grabbed my containers (which I didn’t forget to pack) and tried to relieve some pressure with hand expression.
Now before you breathe a sigh of relief, and think that maybe this was okay. Let me just tell you how not okay this was. Firstly I had heard about hand expression a handful of times, whilst on the La Leche League group and then maybe spoken about it once or twice to breastfeeding buddies. Owning an electric pump made that although the knowledge of this method was vaguely entrenched in my brain. Never had I imagined myself actually using this method.
I think it is safe to say that I was completely traumatized. For. The. Day. Technically I’m still traumatized…
My experience went like this: It was a little embarrassing even though I sat there alone with my boobs, I kept thinking what someone would think if they walked in there. I managed to get 120ml in 20 mins which is just a little less than my average for the same time with an electric pump. *insert big pat on the back* It made me realise that for these dire situations everyone should know how to hand express.
I didn’t exactly have time to read tons of articles, or watch videos so I did what came naturally to me (perhaps why I felt like I milked myself) hand expression tips:
- Popped out the boob as per normal, held a container underneath with the other hand.
- Massaged circular motions around all the parts that felt really hard to release the pressure (and avoid milk duct blockages).
- And then I did it, placed my hand in a C shape – and pulled at my nipple from the outside of the aerola (the dark part around your nipple – at this point milk sprayed from various little holes in my nipple. Suddenly the container started filling up with milk. I must admit I got a little excited at this point.
- I continued to pull my thumb and forefinger behind the areola, and then with a pushing movement pulled downward toward the nipple. (Basically – milking)
- I did this on both sides obviously – for what I thought was equal amounts of time on each.
Your fingers do get really numb after a short while. You may begin to feel like making a moo sound after a few minutes. It becomes painful. (Get milking cream should this occur in future.)
I walked out of that room, partly feeling like a superhero – because I am that determined to be a successful breastfeeding mom. And partly feeling like an idiot.
I’ve decided that I will be – SUPERCOW!