Porsche Sheffield is a mama of four, a wife, and a police officer. It's definitely a challenge juggling family life with work life. But the hardest thing she's had to do on her breastfeeding journey? "Pump while I'm on duty."
Protect (your time) and serve (the milk).
When Porsche first went back to work, she cried every time she pumped. She missed her baby, Joziah, but she was also having a hard time making a routine at work. "I was feeling overwhelmed and wasn't yielding a lot of milk because of the stress." It took some creativity and persistence, but once she was able to prioritize pumping in her work schedule, she was able to relax a little bit more. And the more she could relax, the more milk she produced. Now she pumps every three hours and stores her milk in the freezer at work.
Brief your work squad.
Porsche is the first police officer at her agency to pump at work, so she's had to make do with cobbled together lactation spaces. Every day is a little different, but usually she borrows an empty office, removes all her gear, and pumps. "I printed a sign to let my coworkers know when I'm pumping," she says. "They've been really supportive." And just to make sure she's covered, she calls out "10-6" to let the dispatcher know she's busy.
Be prepared for an emergency.
When Porsche is out on a call, she tries really hard to get back to the police department to pump. If she can't, she's got her manual pump with her. Just in case. But at the end of the day, the struggle for Porsche, like so many other working mothers, is real: "I'm so relieved when I get home, put the pump down, and nurse my son." Even if you’re not a police officer patrolling city streets, if you’re a mama whose work takes you away from the comforts of an office and out into the world, mastering the manual breast pump can save the day.
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