A Cup of milk: How the oldest of human rituals requires the newest of innovation


The trend for mothers to return to work at some point after childbirth is characteristic of our modern society, and for this reason, amongst others, there is an ever-increasing need for many women to develop means of mothering their children despite being parted from them for periods of time. Breastfeeding is no exception to this, and as such, mums are often turning to technology to facilitate this. Electric breast pumps provide a quick way of expressing milk with little effort, and as such, they are very popular among nursing mothers.  In my case, I found them invaluable in providing my tongue-tied son with my milk despite his inability to feed at the breast (see: https://mumsessentialsblog.wordpress.com/2016/08/14/if-it-hurts-youre-doing-it-wrong-when-breastfeeding-doesnt-work-out).

Whatever your reason for choosing to express your milk using an electric pump, the prolonged periods needed holding the flanges to fully empty the breast may be time-prohibitive.  Indeed, when exclusively expressing milk for my son, I imagine about an hour and a half of my day was spent using my pump: time which, whilst well-spent, was not the most useful or productive.   I am fortunate that I am able to feed my 11 week old daughter without impediment, but in order to be parted from her for a short period of time, I once again need to make use of my electric breast pump.  The difference is this time, I have a toddler to care for, and long periods of time with my hands attached to flanges is not conducive to keeping the environment safe for him or keeping my time spent cleaning down: I have lost count of the number of times I have dived for that cup containing leftover coffee dregs that has seemed so appealing to him..not easy when both hands are already accounted for!  I have therefore felt that for some time, a solution to this was long overdue.  We need some new technology to solve a problem created by the new technology!  It would however appear that it is here (thank goodness!) and goes by the name of Simple Wishes Hands Free Breast Pump bra.  The flanges happily sit inside the especially-designed cups, which totally cover everything and leave your hands free to work, type, attend to your baby or see to your misbehaving toddler, and, unlike your toddler, once inside the cups those flanges are not going anywhere.  I wish I had owned something like this when exclusively pumping for my son, as time not spent with my hands occupied would have been time gained for that all important tummy-tickling…



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