Pumping Milk for My Preemie

Would you believe I had no one visit my room within the first 12 hours after birth regarding breastfeeding?  Granted I had a premature baby in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, but still. Here I was in my postpartum room with my husband Gregg resting after the first NICU visit of the morning.  In front of my bed, quietly sad a breast pump. “We need to start pumping,” I said without a moment’s hesitation. A fly on the wall would have been laughing hysterically watching my husband and I trying to figure out how to work the machine, how for me to properly hold the pumps.  Gregg, not realizing that when he turned it on that he turned it all the way on full blast heard me yelp immediately. Needless to say he dialed that pump down real fast!

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I pumped for a while and then told Gregg to shut it off.  I felt like there was only so much coming out. The yellowish substance at the bottom (yes, I know now that it was colostrum) seemed miniscule.  “Could you please ask the nurse if we should keep this or throw it away?” I pleaded. A few minutes later Gregg zoomed back into the room with a huge grin on his face.  “She is rushing it down to the NICU right now. She called it Liquid Gold!”

And that began the pumping journey that had me renting an Ameda pump from the hospital and purchasing a travel breast pump from Medela for work.  I lasted 3 months and couldn’t handle it anymore between the extensive pumping schedule, the effects on my health and emotions. Becky got what she needed and did well.  Had I been able to breastfeed her, I would have gladly opted for that but it was not in the cards and today I am really proud of the effort I put forward regardless.

What pump did you end up using?  Did you struggle with pumping? Hardest moment?

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