So there I am with a new baby on my chest and I’m like, “this should be easy!”. But I was wrong, for a plethora of different reasons. The main reason? I just wasn’t prepared. I had no idea how exhausting breastfeeding is. It boggled my brain that I could sit there for hours on end doing virtually nothing and get nothing done and be so exhausted. How? But most of all, why did no one warn me? Surely someone did?
Knowing what I know from my first foray with breastfeeding, I’m approaching things a bit differently this time around. Instead of filling my hospital bag with “baby stuff”, it’s basically jam-packed with every nipple related piece of equipment, ointment, or pad I could get my hands on. With my first child, I had brought so many outfits and I think I even brought Sophie the Giraffe and 10 types of soothers. I think I just had no idea how much our lives would revolve around feeding in those first few hours and days post-partum. There’s really no way of knowing until you’re there.
Here are some of the breastfeeding essentials I have on hand for those first few hours and days:
Booby Boons Lactation Cookies // Yes, cookies that can increase your milk supply. There is a god! These are filled with ingredients that are galactagogues, which means they help stimulate milk production.
Apple Cheeks Waterproof Breast Pads // On a daily basis I probably changed my breast pad up to 5 times a day, which means if you go the disposable route, you’re looking at a lot of waste and a lot of $! These waterproof one by Apple Cheeks are my fave because they are made from the same material as cloth diapers, so you won’t get any leakage. They are well worth the investment!
Medela Nipple Shield // My son had a lip & tongue tie that was undiagnosed and that’s why I experienced a lot of pain in my first weeks. The pain was so excruciating (it shouldn’t have been, but I had no idea what I was going through wasn’t normal) that the only time I could get some reprieve was when I wore my shield. It was great when I had cracks that I was trying to heal!
Avent Manual Breast Pump // This was my savior! Getting out of the house, if even for just a quick run for a coffee, is something you think you might like, pumps will become your friend. Being able to leave a few oz of milk with my husband and the baby while I run to the grocery store or just step away for my sanity’s sake was a blessing.
Traditional Medicinals Mother’s Milk Tea // Tea that increases your milk production. mmhm! There are a number of natural ways to increase your milk production and this tea contains a few of those ingredients.
The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding // This is my breastfeeding bible. Instead of running to google, this is where I run. You can get a lot of mixed advice or anecdotal responses from a quick google search, but reliable information can be hard to come by. That’s why I keep this ebook on my cell phone so it’s with me whenever I have a question.
S’well Water Bottle // Staying hydrated is so important. It feels like you’re doing nothing but really, you’re loosing so much fluids that it’s really important to stay on top of your H2O intake.
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