Breastfeeding Essentials for New Mumsby Sarah Hurst
Hello gorgeous new mum, mum to be, glowing Goddess and grower of tiny humans… it’s finally happened, hasn’t it?? The day has indeed arrived where you are forced to think of doing something else with your boobies other than ‘tit taping’ them to your dress, hoisting them a few inches higher or using them to convince your husband that you absolutely, definitely do need that new pair of heels ( which you won't be wearing by the way, but more on that later!)
Yes, their true purpose has been realised: You are going to sustain life! (And kill bugs, and heal sticky eyes, and sort out stretch marks, and increase IQ scores and a whole manner of other debatable possibilities that I promise you will come across in your Google search results at some point during your breastfeeding journey!)
You are about to become Milk Maker Extraordinaire. Congrats! It’s a tough old role, but highly rewarding. Here are a few things that will make it easier for you:
A good nursing bra - a million sizes bigger than you think you’re going to need
Ladies, where there once were lemons, there will now be melons. Somewhere between day 3 and 5 when the colostrum has provided its golden nutrients of the highest order to your tiny bundle, and you’ve been practising the perfect latch, your milk will come in….(and it will come straight back out). You’ll have boobs bigger than your head and it won’t be as amazing as you possibly always dreamed it would be. Get a massive bra…and a bra extender for the back too. Oh, and a ‘sleep bra’ – you know, those stretchy crop tops with no fastens or lumpy bits (heaven!). I’m actually wearing one of those right now. My baby is 21 months and its 7 pm, but hey – you’re welcome!
Speaking of milk coming in and back out, you’re also going to need…
A box of breast pads
When we are talking about essentials, this is essentially it! It does calm down, but in those early days you’ll be leaking milk like a milking cow. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to achieve this with enough force to weaponise those bad boys and give a side squirt to a grumpy partner. Most likely though, it will just leak out at the most inopportune moments, plus every time your baby cries.
If you are environmentally conscious, then there are reusable options available – a bit like period pants, but for your boobs.
Now back to that latch…
Whether this is your first time or your fifth time, you’re going to have to spend some time getting the latch right. This is because the person who is really learning this time is your baby. So even if you have done this before and you’re a total pro, your new little bundle still needs to learn how to breastfeed. With this in mind, you’re going to need some nipple cream. There are loads out there, but I always just stuck to the good old Lansinoh and it also doubles up as a fab lip balm once your nipples have healed.
I mean, this one is debatable depending on how comfortable you are undressing in public. If you are happy to completely whip your bazookas out whenever needed, regardless of what you display in the process then you can skip this step (and ladies, if this is you – that’s totally fine. Remember, legally you can breastfeed wherever you want to and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise). Personally, I was always more worried about showing off my post-partum abdomen ( I use that word very loosely) than anything else, so I either wore purpose-made nursing tops or used the ‘vest down, top-up’ method. Honestly, no one ever noticed.
Now let’s talk about that new pair of heels – if you really do insist, then don’t spend a fortune, your feet will still be swollen and they won't fit you in a few weeks. I know…I’m full of good advice! If you fancy a bit more you can pop over and read my tips for first-time Mums. It’s honest, as always. X
Sarah - Arthurwears