I exclusively pump i use the medla pump in style. Private message me if you have any questions.
Medela or Ameda double pumps are really about the only ones up to the job. I would recommend hiring a hospital one for the first 12 weeks to establish your supply and also to make sure it is going to work for you.
I pumped for my first as hr was a NICU baby, it was hard work and time consuming as you are basically doing double duty: pumping but still have all the time/extra work that goes with bottle feeding, I certainly didn't get any more rest doing it that way!
As I said, I was unable to nurse my first and only managed to supply him with breastmilk for a few short weeks but successfully nursed my second for 10 1/2 months and am currently nursing my 9 month old daughter. Getting a good lactation consultant in the early days helped tremendously but I'll not lie with my second it was six weeks before it beck easier. Third baby took to it straight away. Every baby is different, this might be the one who nurses for you, if not know you can pump exclusivly and we will be here to support you, we have a few members who have done/are doing this.
Good luck with your pregnancy.
hospital grade pump is definitely the way to go.
I have to say though, I pumped exclusively for my first and started nursing my second but had to switch to pumping because of severe colic. Even with our rough breastfeeding experience, I have to say that nursing directly from the breast is less work than pumping. Pumping required a 3 hr a day commitment, plus all the time needed to feed the baby, warm the milk, wash the bottles, etc. It was also harder to go places. It is a good option as an alternative when nursing doesn't work out, but I certainly wouldn't think it is easier or less time consuming. If you want to maintain a supply, you have to pump as often as you would nurse, including through the night in the beginning.
I would suggest you get in touch with a lactation consultant or reach out to your local LLL. They can help you gain confidence in your nursing. It is possible that your first wasn't hungry but had a need to suckle (pacifier helps some- talk to the ped or LC). In the first few months they are going through frequent growth spurts and require frequent nursing. they seem insatiable. This serves to naturally boost your supply. If your baby hits this growth spurt and you are pumping, you would likely have to mimic this cluster feed to boost your supply (google power pumping). Your first may have had difficulty due to poor latch. And don't forget that you can walk around while nursing a baby, but it's hard to move with horns attached to your boobs :).
Of course you can choose to pump. Like I said, I did it and it is great that we have that option. I just hope that you aren't basing your choice solely on your experience with your first. Congratulations on your pregnancy and decision to try to give your baby the gift of breastmilk! Best of luck and let us know if you have any other questions about pumping, nursing or a combination (which many successfully do as well!)