Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Mothers Room

I am grateful that my job has created a space for mothers to be able to breastfeed, or express breast milk in private. There is no way that I could go an entire work day without pumping, and my office has neither a door, nor even walls that go to the ceiling. Without this area that has been set aside I would be forced to make use of a bathroom stall, or something. I don't even normally have a car that I could go hide in.

It would be nice if it were a bit less scary though. Yesterday I almost jumped out of my skin when a spider skittered across the table. It was a small skittle sized skitterer, but too close for comfort especially with exposed breasts. The obvious wear on the used office furniture and clinical tiles on the floor don't lend themselves to a cozy atmosphere either.
The room is really just a decent sized chunk of an existing bathroom that has been walled off with Herman Miller walls. The walls almost go to the ceiling; it has no windows, and a door that locks. You have to sign out a key from security to be able to get in. One of my coworkers voiced a bit of envy that there is a mini-fridge in there. I had to explain that it's not full of snacks & beer (or even bottled water) it's just for people to store expressed milk in. All of a sudden the fridge was much less exciting.

I don't think anyone keeps their milk in that fridge though. I know I don't. I didn't know if there would be a non-public place for me to put milk while at work, so I brought a cooler with me. Seeing as how I keep almost forgetting my purse in my office I have a small phobia that if I actually did put milk in that mini-fridge I would make it home without it. That would be the suck.

The room at least has a normal sink in it. The main bathroom sinks are strange round jobs. You press a pedal with your foot and the water comes out like a sprinkler. I dreaded having to wash my pump bits with that sort of sink. Having a hot water tap is nice too, the round sinks don't have that since they don't have regular taps.

So I'll give the company a point in it's favor for creating a room for moms to use, but I take a half a point back because it's in a bathroom and is kind of creepy. Any of you other moms out there that have had to deal with expressing breast milk at work or school, what facilities did you have to use?

2 comments:

yer mama said...

yeah, I had to pump in a public restroom. Frequently, my fellow colleagues would talk to me from the other stalls. they could hear the pump and knew it was me. One time a woman started snapping in time to the sound of the pump pumping. On numerous occasions I got to enjoy a nice relaxinng pumping session while someone was taking a huge stinky dump in the neighboring stalls (there were only 3 stalls). Needless to say that I was not able to get much milk in such a lovely environment. Before i returned to work I could power pump 8 oz in 10 minutes. It was amazing. Within 4 weeks in that bathroom stall I dropped to 1 oz in 15 minutes. And thus a formula baby was born. I made it to 5 months so I guess that was good. Not what I had in mind though.

Tamika said...

Our mother's room is basically the corner of the telephone closet. We have to pump amongst the storage materials and dust. There are even missing tiles from the ceiling in there. I guess its nice they gave us somewhere to pump, but in a company of 30 employees there is always atleast 1 woman pregnant and sometimes two. Right now we have 4 nursing mothers but two pump in their offices. It is what it is. I refused to use the telephone closet and was pumping in my car, but now with the chillier weather its not possible. Alas, today is my first day in the telephone closet and I am NOT looking forward to it.

I used to work at a corporate job and they had a mother's room. It was a office with a sofa, glider and ottoman, soft lighting. It was perfect!