Re: Exclusively Pumping, am I just crazy!
Welcome to the forum and congratulations on the baby to come!
It's wonderful that you're open to breastfeeding this time around. And while I completely (COMPLETELY!!!) understand the urge to have everything planned before your baby arrives, I really encourage you to stay open and flexible. Everything may change once your baby arrives- as an experienced mom, and one who saw her first child through a NICU stay, I am sure you know how easily and how rapidly a baby can alter your well-constructed plans!
Nipples are designed to be sensitive- that's how a mom knows her baby is latched on properly. If it hurts, she needs to adjust the baby's latch. When a baby is properly latched on, the nipple actually experiences almost no motion, compression, suction, or friction. It sits on the back of the baby's tongue, at the opening of the throat. Motion/friction/compression/suction is happening at the front of the baby's mouth, where the areola sits. So if you can, today, pinch your areola and not feel pain in the nipple, that's a good indication that your nipples aren't going to enter into the equation when you're nursing or pumping.
The extreme sensitivity to friction makes me wonder if you have something going on that's a bit outside the normal realm. Maybe Raynaud's phenomenon? Raynaud's is pain that accompanies a sudden constriction in the vasculature, and resultant limited blood flow. Do you ever see your nipples blanch (turn white), turn bluish or bluish purple, and then return to a normal color?
It's wonderful that you're thinking of nursing for the first few days. If you're open to nursing for a few days, would you consider trying to nurse for a few weeks? Many moms find that nursing is painful at first, but if they tough it out for a while it becomes painless. Not trying to push you- I just think it's something to consider, particularly because nursing "straight from the tap" is so much easier than exclusive pumping.
Don't get me wrong: exclusive pumping (EP) can work and plenty of moms do it. Bfwmomof3 did a good job of outlining why EP can be difficult. When I was EP, I found that the hardest thing to balance was needing to pump and also needing to take care of my crying, hungry baby.
Your pumping schedule looks okay, but I would really encourage you to include some nighttime pump sessions during the first few weeks/months, as you figure out exactly what sort of pumping schedule is going to work for you. Nighttime sessions tend to yield a lot of milk, and nighttime pumping will help keep your daytime supply up where it should be. Babies are kind of designed to be nighttime feeders, so it is natural for our bodies to be producing milk, and having milk removed, at night.
ETA: The price point you have for pumping seems a bit high. If you live in the US and have health insurance, your plan is probably required to pay for a pump, so knock $200-300 off your estimate right there. Bottles you'd need to buy anyway, if you were going to feed your baby formula, so there goes another $100 or so. And bags for milk are cheap- I don't remember exactly how much, but pretty insignificant. But even if pumping did cost you the whole $500, it would still be a) cheaper than formula and b) worth it, because it's so much better for your health and the baby's health.
Last edited by @llli*mommal; January 16th, 2014 at 11:56 AM.
Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
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