Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Breast Feeding Essentials

I'm not going to sugar coat it- breast feeding is hard! Like really, freaking hard. I did the whole breast feeding class thing, and it was is still hard. However, I will also tell you, that just when you think it could get any worse harder, it gets better. And easier. And more convenient. This is a list of my nursing/breast feeding essentials that I wish someone had told me about earlier on.

Nursing Bras - I bought waaaay too many nursing bras before settling on these little gems. I am not busty by any means, but after my milk came in, I felt like I had softballs attached to my chest where my A/B cups used to be! These bras offer support, while still being comfortable, and I find it much easier to nurse Kendall without the bra flap getting in the way (the ones that fold down always seemed to be hitting her in the face).

Boppy Pillow - an absolute must have during the first few months of nursing! I took this bad boy with me down to the NICU while we were still in the hospital, and trucked it around with me once we got home as well. It really helped me to keep Kendall supported during her feedings, and also kept me from getting hundreds of knots in my back and shoulders. Now that she is older, K uses it to sit up in, lounge on, etc. Plus, the prints are all totally adorbs! You can find lots of custom covers on Etsy too!

Lanolin - (excuse my language in advance) this shits expensive, but it will SAVE your nipples! I lathered this stuff on before and after every feeding early on, and it made a huge difference! Best part is, it's totally safe for baby, so you dont have to worry about wiping it off (that will be the last thing on your mind anyways). Make sure you have at least one or two tubes of it! Word to the wise, dont let it get too cold, because this makes it sooo difficult to get out. It's super thick, and if it isnt a little warm (I used to put it under my arm pit), its a pain in the ass to get out.

Shield - this was something that suprisingly enough was given to me by my lactation consultant in the hospital. She was worried that between Kendall breast feeding, being given a pacifier in the NICU, and a few (read 3) bottles of formula in the NICU, she might have nipple confusion, so she gave me a nipple shield. Even after we had a great latch down, and a good system, I still used this bad boy. The first few weeks of nursing are hell on your nipples. I found that by using this at the begining of the feeding, I could take it off a few minutes it, and it helped to ease the initial pain. After a few weeks, I didnt need them, but they were AMAZING the first few weeks.

Breast Pump - I started using this about two weeks in. By that time, K's sleep schedule (bless her heart) was on a pretty good routine, so I was able to pump in the morning before she got up for the day. This not only helped me build my frozen stash, but also helped me keep my supply up once she started sleeping through the night. It was important to me that I bought a great pump early on, because now that I am back to work, I pump at least twice a day, and so far, I have been able to keep my supply up with her demand even though she is getting bottles a few times a day. It also has been great to have the frozen stash for when D and I want to go out to dinner, to a movie, etc. I know I always have milk in the freezer for the little piglet.

Bottles - we chose to go with Dr Brown's bottles, primarily because a friend/co worker gave me a bunch of unused bottles and parts she had left over. Major score, because like all baby products, the cost of these adds up. Dr Brown's bottles are recommended for colicky babies, which was never an issue for us, but better to be safe than sorry! If you are going to use these bottles, make sure you have a dishwasher basket, because washing all the parts gets uber annoying after the 500th time.

Other essentials - Cute burp cloths (for out in public), the burp cloths that actually work, Snacks, staying hydrated

Hope this list helps! Like I said before, breast feeding is hard (and hurts!) but is totally worth it! Not only for bonding between mommy and baby, but for the immunities baby gets, and the post baby weight it helps you loose! I will always remember being 6 weeks post partum, feeding K while watching D do Insanity, and laughing in my head thinking that I was burning more calories by feeding her than he was burning working and sweating his ass off!


  1. So true, and I agree with everything. The only thing I would add is a big gulp cup with a long straw! I would always get so thirsty while I was nursing, so I liked having a huge glass of water close by ;) So proud of you for keeping it going...even though you are back to work. You are a Supermommy! xo

    1. Couldn't agree more! Staying hydrated is key :) I probably drink 8-10 huge tumblers full of water and a dash of G2 Gatorade everyday! It's tasty, and Gatorade is supposed to help with milk production too (double plus)