One of the worst things that can happen is forgetting your pump phalanges. Forgetting bottles is not as bad because there are ways to improvise but phalanges are definitely trickier to replace.
One time, while at work I realized I forgot the phalanges at home. This time, simply going home was not that easy. Thankfully, working at a hospital came really in handy this time. I called the OB floor and the lactation consultant there was able to provide me with a set of phalanges so I could use the hospital pump. The experience was so overwhelming that I never forgot them again.
I would suggest three things:
- Keep an extra set of phalanges at work or in the bag at all times – it’s worth it. Also, keep a few bottle caps around because I would constantly forget those.
- Learn how to hand express. Before pumps, many women expressed milk by using their hands. It’s a hard thing to learn when you are in the moment but if you already practiced and know what you are doing, it’s much easier. There are plenty of tutorials online. I particularly like the Stanford videos for this purpose .
- Keep a hand pump at the office. Hand pumps are not as efficient but when it’s an emergency, they work wonders. Practice with your hand pump at home first, and then bring it to work and keep it there, just in case. It’s a a cost effective way to be ready in a breastfeeding emergency.