Last week, as I was cleaning my office and attempting to dwindle down my career to the contents of one box, I was reminded of many memories throughout the years.
I came across this gem of a photo, which has called my office door home for nearly 6 of those years.
The first time I ever took the breast pump out of the bag and looked at the contraption that I would soon be milking myself with, I was horrified. I looked at my husband and wailed, “I am no longer human! Childbirth has turned me into a cow.”
Imagine the continued horror when I quickly realized I would have to sit in my office with this thing and milk myself while trying to multitask.
If you have ever seen someone using one, there is nothing sexual about it, whatsoever. Its sole purpose is functional, unless otherwise used as a prop in a science fiction movie.
I knew getting used to pulling it out, shutting my door, stripping down from the waist up, and attaching myself at work was going to be an adjustment, to say the least.
My worst fear, and likely anyone who has had to pump at work, was someone walking in on me while I was in the middle of the process.
I had no issue taking phone calls while I was hooked up. In fact, the poor IT guy stopped me at one point while I was trying to get my computer back on the system, “What is that sound?” I replied, “I just gave birth, do you really want to know?” That was the end of that line of questioning.
It was at some point during my first week back when it happened. You would think the fact that my door was closed, there was a strange noise coming from it, and I had just birthed a human a few months earlier would all be indicators to knock if the door was shut.
No such luck.
There I was in all my pumping glory – boobs out, contraption in place, milking myself – when my boss walked right in. No knock. No warning. I am sure my face went 10 shades of red and I quickly hunched over in hopes he didn’t catch a glimpse of anything.
I was half naked attached to a human milk machine, the only way he didn’t get a sneaky peek is if he was half blind.
He is not.
I was completely mortified.
In an effort not to make it weird, I decided to approach the whole situation with humor and printed off a sign for my office door that simply read, “Got Milk?” Subtle. Funny. Hopefully enough that anyone stopped in front of my office would quickly get the point without needing to sound any alarms – milking human (lights flashing).
Apparently it took walking in on me one more time.
A few days later with the sign now up, I was in the middle of the milking process yet again and the door opens. Seriously? I could barely get this thing out of the bag without wanting to crawl in a hole. Twice, really? You would think once would be enough to scar someone for life.
The ordeal resulted in some issues with pumping (shocker) and I eventually went to my doctor, who prescribed wine to help with the milk flow. Silver lining.
Between the stress of feeling like someone might walk in at any moment and not wanting to guilt myself into thinking my boobs were the end all and be all to sustain human life, I quit pumping about 30 days after I went back to work.
After the birth of our daughter, I had a lock installed on my door.
The sign stayed up until the day I left.