When I think back to my time using a breast pump with my first child, my memories are pretty ho hum at best. Mostly, I remember being alone in a confined space, with a ticking clock, telling me I needed to hurry back to work as I eyed the bottles awkwardly attached to my body that never seemed to get full enough fast enough.
But the other day I had an epiphany, of sorts. I was looking back at old pictures and realized that despite having had two kids in the past four years, my husband and I still managed to travel a lot — mostly because I was able to use a breast pump when I needed to.
For my first kid, I had the breast pump because I had to go back to work just six weeks after having my baby. With my second child, I was working from home, which made feeding him so much easier, but I still found that I used my breast pump a lot.
Even though I was working from home with my baby, my breast pump symbolized freedom. It meant I could leave my kiddo for more than a couple of hours. It meant my husband could help me in the middle of the night. It also meant I could leave overnight every once in a while, which, to me, felt really important for maintaining a sense of self.
For my second child, I used The Breastfeeding Shop to claim my free breast pump through Tricare. Not only was the experience so incredibly easy — the form took two minutes to fill out — I also got to choose from all the most popular pumps on the market.
For my first kid, I had used a hand-me-down pump, so I wasn’t even sure what type I would want if I had the choice, but The Breastfeeding Shop made choosing really easy with its online comparison chart. The chart lines up all the breast pumps and informs you about each one’s weight, what it comes with, its pumping capabilities, etc.
Through Tricare insurance, I knew I qualified for a free pump, but I did not know that I also qualified for free accessories. Once I ordered my pump, I received a happy email from The Breastfeeding Shop informing me that I would also receive a pump bag, extra tubing, bottles and months worth of storage bags.
When a giant box arrived with all this unexpected swag, I couldn’t help but feel like I was getting something over on someone.
THEN! Two months after the birth of my baby, I received another email from The Breastfeeding Shop, informing me that I could order another accessory kit without another prescription, and again, it was all free. For my second accessory kit, I received another pump bag (different style this time), more bottles and more storage bags.
Receiving more breastfeeding supplies was exactly the type of encouragement I needed to keep up with my breastfeeding. It’s a hard road and we moms need all the encouragement we can get.
Did the people at The Breastfeeding Shop know me? Of course not. But it just felt nice.
It also felt nice that I was emailed all of this in a timely way. After looking back at old emails, I now see that The Breastfeeding Shop had informed me that I qualified for a second accessory kit in my initial order of my pump, but in the chaos of having a newborn, I had completely forgotten. I love how exactly two months after my child’s birth, the company emailed again, reminding me that all I needed to do was choose what I wanted for my second accessory kit, and then it would be mailed to me promptly (which it was).
Even though I technically didn’t need a breast pump for my second child for work reasons, I used it a lot. I took that thing on a girl’s weekend to Austin, I toted it in and out of restaurants in New York City.
I even *guilty confession* used my breast pump bag, without the pump in it, on a trip to Las Vegas after I was finished breastfeeding. It was waterproof and easy to carry. I liked it. Yes, my friends made fun of me about it, a lot, but I didn’t care.
Even if you don’t think you need a breast pump because you’re not running back to the office, I recommend getting one. It’s free. It offers you a little freedom. And, once you’re done with it, you can donate it to someone who doesn’t have insurance that covers breast pumps.
Yes this is a sponsored post, but the reason The Breastfeeding Shop was one of the first companies Military Moms Blog reached out to is because of what a wonderful experience I had with the company, and I wanted other military moms to know.