When Peach was here, I don't think I ever expressed milk. When Kaya was a few months old I started expressing and freezing some. Partly because I just thought that's what nursing mothers were supposed to do. And partly because my Annabel Karmel recipes said to include breast milk in the purees.
In the end, I threw out tons of frozen milk that never got used, it just sat lonely in the freezer until it was past date. So by the time Lana got here, I didn't even bother expressing any milk. Nor for Zoe.
None of my babies have ever had a bottle, ever. It's all been milk directly from me. I've enjoyed it that way. It's simple, convenient, a bonding experience, on tap, sterile and at the perfect temperature. No measuring, mixing, freezing, storing or reheating.
But next Tuesday I'm going under general anesthetic to have all 4 wisdom teeth surgically removed, and after that I'll be on powerful painkillers. I've been told I'll need to "pump and dump" (express milk, then discard it) for at least 6 hours after the surgery.
So I've started building up a supply of milk for Daddy to feed to Turtle while I'm doped up. Yesterday, I worked hard at it and only got 1 oz. I guess I'm inexperienced. But today I tried pumping one side while Turtle fed from the other, then I swapped over. He's better at stimulating the let down. And that worked. I got 5 oz in like 10 minutes. So that went well. I'll need to do a bunch more.
I guess sterilizers, breast pumps and bottles are a good thing for situations like this. I still feel kind of sad, looking at the bottles that will be standing in for me. I'm thankful they're there, so I won't have to give him drug filled milk. But it still feels kind of sad.