In all my travels, I have never had TSA inspect my milk. That is, until today.
Luckily, they gave it back, but the Mr. TSA Agent and I shared, what I thought to be a very awkward experience.
He first opened my cooler and had to sort through the conical pump pieces which still had some milk on them. They weren’t dripping wet, but they had clearly been used recently and not washed.
“Sorry,” I said sheepishly although in hindsight I wish I hadn’t apologized and had instead grabbed my boobs and grunted or said, “Yeah! That’s my milk!” Thank God men don’t make milk. We’d never hear the end of it.
“Oh, I’ve seen worse,” Mr. TSA responded. I should have pressed him a bit on this statement because I’d like to know what TSA finds worse than a milk-laden pump part but I just wanted the inspection to end.
Next, he pulled out two of my full six-ounce bags (Moooooo!!!) and went looking for his supervisor. It takes a lot for me to feel uncomfortable, but I felt uncomfortable as every person waiting for his or her shoes had my milk flashed in front of them while Mr. TSA Agent sought a supervisor. I instinctively hugged my chest and later concluded this was to make my boobs look smaller so no one would peg me as the lactating traveler.
Hands pushing down chest, I started sweating when I caught a glimpse of Target’s Up & Up double arrow logo on the swaying bags.
WHY had I chosen this week to test out generic? Why didn’t I just stick with Medela instead of going all savvy consumer? Why? Why? WHY?! Would they stay closed? If they opened, would I become the “Oh...I’ve seen worse” example for TSA?
The found supervisor, who must have been trapped IN the conveyor belt given the amount of time it took to find the man slowly re-calibrated the testing machine so Mr. TSA Agent could test my milk for explosives. None found, he set it back in my cooler amongst more wet pumping parts and a cloth diaper, also damp with milk. Instead of thanking him, I APOLOGIZED AGAIN and said, “that was weird.” Apparently, my self confidence was stuck back in the security line.
He looked at me, pure and simple confusion stamped across his face, and said, “No it wasn’t.”
So, the next time TSA manhandles your breastmilk in its generic Target bags, don’t feel weird about it. They don’t.
Shameless plug! Flying? With a baby or toddler? By yourself? Don’t forget my handy-dandy guide as you embark on your summer
horror vacation plans:
Sorry. That was weird, too.