This post is sponsored by Dr. Brown’s. All opinions are 100% my own!
Hi ladies!! I hope you are ready for a looooooong post. I apologize for how long this post is but, I really didn’t know how else to explain all of the things I learned through out my first two pregnancies and breastfeeding without really explaining how I learned them! So that being said – grab your coffee or chai latte and let’s get started!!
Breastfeeding is a topic that so many women have questions about, but do not always know who to ask or how to ask the questions. Or, maybe you know that you will have questions but you know so little about it that you don’t know what they are or even where to begin? Or, maybe this is your third child like me and you feel like you have it in the bag – although, that is NOT how I feel – I feel like I learned so much the first time around, and again even learned so much more the second time (which was completely different because I exclusively pumped for Walker as he was a NICU baby and I couldn’t hold him for the first 10 days of his life). That being said, I know that there will be an abundance of things I learn this time around too! But – I am here to share what I did learn from time one and two?
The first thing I learned is that breast feeding takes both, you and your husband to make it work. No, you will not need your husbands help to actually feed the baby – but if you are breast feeding you will need his help with a lot of other things around the house, because you are going to be spending a LOT of time with your baby on your boob. You think I am joking? I really am not! When I was breastfeeding Braydon – Ryan was actually deployed to Afghanistan after he was 8 weeks old and I literally would just stare at piles of laundry, dishes in the sink, and so many other things that I needed to be doing while he was eating. When in hindsight- I should have just sat there and enjoyed every single second of it, because this too shall pass and it ends too quickly! You will also need your husband to grab you a water when you sit down and the baby latches and you realize how thirsty you are, to help out with the other kids if this isn’t your first and to rub your feet at night because you not only made a baby for 9 months but are also now making their breakfast, lunch, dinner and every single snack in between all by yourself.
So, what else did I learn during my first two children and breastfeeding? Well- with Braydon I breastfed and pumped until he was a few months old and then switched to pumping exclusively. I did this because for me it was best. Ryan was deployed to Afghanistan and it helped me be able to set a set schedule for myself and Braydon even if Braydon didn’t always want to abide by that schedule – they never really do, right? Ha! And, with Walker, I exclusively pumped because he had a chest tube in the NICU and could not be held for his first 10 days on this earth. I pumped every few hours throughout the day and would drop off my milk at the NICU multiple times a day when we went to visit him. To be honest- I am so used to exclusively pumping at this point and love that I can make my own schedule that I will probably do that again with Charli. I am fortunate enough to where I have made more than enough milk with both the boys – I pray that this continues with Charli so that I do not have a supply issue. If you do – obviously consult your doctor but I have read and been told that breastfeeding encourages milk production a lot more than pumping does. All of this being said- have a pump with you at all times! I use the mechanical pump at the house and even in the car but when we are on the go I do not always want the noise of a breast pump echoing through the bathroom stalls. You know another place it is almost impossible to keep things clean and pump? The beach! Another place I would not want to take my large pump. For these times I HIGHLY recommend having a manual pump. Whether it is to get just enough to feed baby for that one meal or to relieve yourself so that you do not become engorged. You will be thankful you had it on you! I keep one in my beach bag and in my diaper bag for these instances. Trust me – you will be glad you have it!
Another thing I found that I always needed were breast pads and storage bags. So the breast pads may be a little embarrassing to keep in your Cult Gaia Bamboo Ark bag but it will be a lot less embarrassing than having to throw on an extra layer or running home to change because you realized you haven’t pumped or fed in a few hours and are leaking through both your bra and top! I personally never had a terrible episode but we have all watched sitcoms on tv or read in People magazine about it happening! Don’t let it happen to you!
The storage bags are great if you only want to keep a few bottles on you at a time but know you will be pumping while you are out. They take up a lot less room in your diaper bag than a bunch of empty bottles. I also like putting in a few frozen bags for feedings while I am out, they can slowly thaw out in the cooler. ((This is more so for when you have stopped pumping but are using up whats left of your frozen milk))
I have tried so many pregnancy and breastfeeding pillows through my years of being pregnant and having babies – I am pretty sure I have tried EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. I am not even kidding! I have to tell you tho, This Dr Brown’s Gia pillow quickly became a favorite and I actually use it for both! I have one from Walker that I use as a pregnancy pillow now and I have another one I am saving up to use for Charli. I love that this brand because it doesn’t looks its shape when you wash it – and trust me, you will wash it! Sometimes every day for a week depending on your babies reflux situation! It also is great because it is thicker and firmer than other breast feeding pillows I have tried, so it gives enough support to hold the baby up for you while you are feeding. We also used it as Walker was learning to hold his head up and sit up for support!!
You can purchase the nursing pillow here!
And last but not least, once you have decide to exclusively pump or if you are going back and forth between the breast and pump. It is important to find a bottle that your baby lovesfind a bottle that your baby loves. Whether it is a different bottle shape or a different nipple shape, some babies can be very picky! Both of our boys took and loved the Dr. Brown’s standard BPA free plastic bottles but we have both the plastic and glass bottles on hand for Charli to try. I also love the the new bottles have the ‘option’ to be used with our without the vent system! We loved the vent system when our boys were young, but once they get older they may not need it anymore, so I love that we can take it out and it’s one less thing we have to clean!
You can purchase any of these bottles here!
So whether you are a first time mom or an experienced mom. I hope I shed a little light on something you may not have thought about before reading this post. Maybe you are not a mom yet but know someone who is and could use a few little tips from one mom to another? Please share this post, and as I mentioned before – I am no doctor, but I am here to help if you need any advice or even just to chat mom to mom! I am always available through email!!!