The Guinness Book of World Records has many categories in which people can try to break a world record and a mother just set the record for the most breast milk donations. Amelia Boomker, from Illinois, donated a total of 16,321 ounces of breast milk and that doesn’t even include the 7,000 ounces the mother pumped nine years ago after the birth of her first child.
To put this into perspective, the amount that Boomker donated is equal to 241 two-liter soda bottles. That is a lot of breast milk that was donated over a seven year period. Boomker had three more children after her first-born, all of which did not breast feed regularly. “I have never really successfully breastfed,” Boomker said, “but I have produced a lot of breast milk.” So much breast milk that the Guinness Book of World Records recognizes and confirms that fact.
The breast milk was donated to the Mother’s Milk Bank of Indiana, unlike the breast milk Boomker donated after the birth of the woman’s first-born, where the extra breast milk was sent to the North Carolina breast milk bank. This because the Indiana Milk Bank was not yet opened, having Boomker to mail it on to North Carolina. It was only after the birth of Ryan, the mothers second child, that Boomker could utilize the new depot. Milk banks are essential in the aiding of premature or sick children whose mothers simply cannot provide the milk themselves. Breast milk can help a child against disease, against allergies and has a variety of other benefits, say many experts.
Boomker’s first born, Danny, had a heart condition and was told by the physician that breast-feeding the child might help in the babies recovery. The child was in surgery just four days after being born. Boomker said, “I started pumping since he was not there. That was all I could do.” But Danny did not have the strength to latch and breastfeed properly. Boomker’s second son could not breast feed either due to a high palate and after having a difficult c-section for the third child, Boomker decided to pump rather than breast feed. Boomker would pump about eight to ten times a day, after each child, for about 20 minutes a session. Even waking up in the middle of the night to pump, Boomker would total approximately three hours a day. That number decreased to eight pumps per day once Boomker returned to work. It is no wonder how this mother from Illinois could break the Guinness Book of World records for breast milk donation. The woman was pumping so often that after Boomker’s own children were fed, there was plenty to go around.
Boomker’s place of work had a lactation room where the mother could work taking conference calls and pump, in privacy, at the same time. “I went to work and showed the people,” the mother said of the certificate the woman received for her efforts, “this is why I have been sitting in the pump-room for all those hours.” Clearly Boomker’s unselfish donations has helped hundreds of children in need and the mother from Illinois hopes that her efforts can shed light on the importance of breast milk donations not for getting into the Guinness Book of World records but for helping needy children.
Opinion By Derik L. Bradshaw