Lots of parents swear by sticking to a feeding, changing and sleeping schedule (to maintain their sanity as much as anything else), and that’s never more important than when you’re a breastfeeding mama who’s decided to exclusively pump. Basically, your breast pump becomes your can’t-live-without accessory. It goes everywhere with you — even to weddings.
Just ask Allison Hepler, who agreed to be in her best friend Rachael Downs’s October 2019 wedding. At the time, Hepler had her pumping sessions planned with military precision. However, some things you just can’t plan, so when it was time for the bridesmaid photos, taken by photographer Amber Fletcher, there had to be a last-minute modification.
“I was pumping four times a day at the time of [the] wedding,” Hepler told POPSUGAR. “One was while we were getting ready and the other was right before the ceremony. I was trying to squeeze in a session while Amber photographed the groom and groomsmen.”
As you can see from one of the images on Fletcher’s Facebook page, Hepler hadn’t quite finished pumping before it was her turn in front of the camera.
“Amber came to me and asked if I would mind staying attached for pictures,” explained Hepler. “I thought she was crazy but I’m all for a funny picture. I told her I didn’t mind doing it since I’m all for normalizing breastfeeding and exclusively pumping. I walked out like that while some people were already arriving for the wedding!”
It helped that Hepler and Downs have been friends for 15 years, and Downs is a mom herself. Plus, she was more than up for taking a few humorous shots of her wedding day.
“We wanted to do a ‘Bridesmaids’-style shot and were trying to think of something funny to do,” she told POPSUGAR. “Half of us in the photo are moms who have pumped or breastfed and all of us are supportive of that, so it was just natural and funny that we could do it while taking photos! It’s just proof that moms gotta do what moms gotta do! Plus, anything that normalizes feeding babies is awesome to me!”
The image received a huge outpouring of appreciation on Fletcher’s Facebook page.
“Ladies getting it all done — you are clearly a fun group of gals, this momma salutes you for your openness, humor, kindness and acceptance,” wrote one person.
“This is the best raw picture I’ve ever seen. #nailedit,” another person declared in the comments.