I borrowed a breast pump from my friend Susan and tried it for the first time today. It took me months to ask if I could use it, a few weeks to pick it up, a few days to try it, and only two pumpings to decide that it's a complete pain in the ass.
Ladies, those of you who actually have to do this for your babies, my hat is off to you.
The idea was that if I could pump a little bit, Dyami might be able to rock her to sleep. Or we might be able to go out to dinner without worrying as much about her waking up.
I would like those things, but it is so not worth the effort to pump.
First off, you have to sterilize all the equipment. My first pumping I ran like a hospital with tongs and clean towels. Second pumping i was a bit more laissez faire, but still careful. I bet moms that pump at work are using the paper towels in the office bathroom to wipe out the bottles for use. Geez, sterilizing is a pain in the butt.
And then there's the actual sitting there with the suction things chomping at your nipples. It's not painful, but neither is it pleasant. First time, I thought, "well, it's not great, but it's not terrible, either." Second time, I think my breasts remembered the sensation, because it was a lot more uncomfortable.
Total time spent was probably nearly two hours (what with cleaning preparing and pumping) and I got a whopping one ounce of breastmilk! I'm sure if I were diligent and kept at this every night, I could work up to more, but I have other things to do with my time.
But to be honest, I'm glad I tried. Now I know that I don't want to, and that I'm not just crazily stubborn or idealistic or anything. Pumping sucks.
Ha! pumping sucks! How true!