How My Vice Principal Convinced Me to Talk About Boobs

I slammed the door to the Batmobile shut, smiling at myself and marveling at my own growth. I hadn’t shied away from the topic, or alluded to it in vague terms: I had straight forwardly, in a matter-of-fact tone asked to have a space to pump.

And it was all thanks to my Vice Principal.

Days before, I had stood in his office, blushing while I asked when this year’s schedule would allow me to find time to hide in a windowless closet to be able to “feed my baby…”

“What’s the matter, Kate? You aren’t comfortable talking to me about breastfeeding your baby?” he asked in his gruff Worcester accent, rolling his eyes.

I blushed. The truth was, I wasn’t comfortable talking about it.

“My wife breastfed three kids. I’ve shared my office with plenty of women who need to pump. I’m familiar with the whe-whir of that machine. What do you need? How can I help?”

I blushed, and then asked for what I wanted.

At first, I was angry that my boss had asked me to talk about my boobs. Then, I realized that I was a fool for being uncomfortable. He was trying to help take care of me and my family, and watned to make sure that I did the best job advocating for myself. Honestly. I was wrong and he was right.

Days later, I presented to the administrators and superintendent of Darmouth Public Schools. My presentation went well, but the battery on the pump died enroute, so I wasn’t going to be able to pump on the way home. I needed a space to pump, and I had no idea where to go.

I took a deep breath, put my big girl pants on, and approached the secretary.

“Where can I go to use my breast pump?”

 

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