I am currently 7 months pregnant and have decided that I would be most comfortable exclusively breast feeding. I know this isn't the norm and I'm an odd bird. My nipples are extremely sensitive and constant friction causes them to be over stimulated and painful even before pregnancy. I'm very worried this will be the case of breastfeeding and thinking about it makes me cringe. I am willing to try normal breast feeding however I am not to hopeful it will be something I stick to for the long haul. This brought me to exclusively pumping.
This is my second child. My first went to NICU for a week after she was born and no one suggested pumping. She was tube fed formula and when she was released I was inexperienced and wanted to do everything I could to keep her healthy. I stick to the formula as the hospital showed me and never thought about breast feeding. I know some women say that bonding over a bottle or breast feeding isn't the same but I had no issues bonding while giving my child a bottle. Actually I feel the stress I would experience trying to breast feed the normal way would cause me to be less connected during feedings.
I have done some research as to what I am getting myself into. I have purchased Medela Advanced Personal Double Breastpump. I know to start I will have to pump every 2 hours for at least 15 minutes but no more than 20. The idea is to have established 8-12 pumping sessions throughout a 24 hour period. My goal is to get though the first 3 days when the baby's intake is not very much breast feeding normally and pumping the other breast to stimulate milk production. I stay at home and my oldest child goes to school full time so my ability to pump every two hours should be pretty open. I plan on starting at 6am, 8am, 10am, 12am, 2pm, 4pm, 6pm, 8pm, 10pm, and then when then when the baby wakes up during the middle of the night. My other child was easy to put onto a sleeping schedule during the night of going to sleep at 10, waking up at 12, 3 and then 6 which works with the pumping schedule I have planned.
My plan is mostly to have the milk stored in the fridge. I think I will want to establish a week's worth of milk to freeze but I am okay with dumping the milk. I know fridge milk is only good for a week and my plan is to be about 4 days ahead. Monday the baby has last Friday's milk and so on. This way when the demand increases I have a few days room to catch up and express more.
Is my plan crazy? Is it something that only seems good on paper? I am thinking it is a 15-20 session which gives me an hour and forty-five minutes in between pumping. Babies rarely sleep for longer so it's not like I will be missing more sleep to pump. I am semi flexible with my schedule and can change times to fit the baby's schedule. I also know I can be a bit late on pumping if I go out someplace or having a bad day. I have read that it's more about the amount of sessions than getting the times exactly right. Any advice would be appreciated. I would hate to waste over $500 on bottles, pump, parts, etc... only to have it be something that was insane to begin with.
What extras should I purchase to make this go as smoothly as possible? I am an A-type personality who needs everything to "ready" for when she arrives. Thanks for any help!