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Before CJ was born, I naively thought breastfeeding meant blissful hours of holding my baby in my arms and easily feeding her. The truth is that it took a few weeks to get the hang of it. And once I got the hang of it, I was still sore, leaky, and feeling frumpy. Here are a few items I found that made breastfeeding more convenient for me.
An Inexpensive, Non-Wire Nursing Sleep Bra
Before I actually started nursing, I didn’t understand why I’d want to wear a bra at night. It sounded uncomfortable to me. But once my milk came in, I realized I needed the sleep bra to hold the breast pads I had to wear to absorb leaks! (See below). I like this one from Basics Brand at Target.
How come no one told me about leakage?! I spent the first few weeks with washcloths stuffed in my bra. I finally wised up and bought some Bamboobies breast pads. I use the regular ones during the day and the overnight ones at night.
Even with the breast pads, I still experience the occasional leaks at night and during the day. I bought a package of men’s moisture-wicking T-shirts to wear at night and around the house during the day. They’re roomier than women’s shirts and I don’t have to worry about my favorite women’s shirt fading from multiple washings.
I had no idea these existed until I was researching what to do about raw nipples. I wore these Medela Soft Shells for a few days and they really helped. Make sure you read the directions because there are a few instances where they’re not recommended.
My daughter was born in December, so I the first few months nursing in cold weather. I hated having to lift my shirt and expose my back and stomach in order to nurse. I had a nursing T-shirt and a nursing sweatshirt, but they were expensive! Then I realized that wearing a nursing tank with a button-down shirt would allow me to keep my stomach and back covered. If you’re on a budget, ThredUp is a great place to buy inexpensive button-downs.
Easy-Open Water Bottle
Breastfeeding makes me thirsty. All the time. I like to keep water by the chair where I nurse. It’s a good idea to get a water bottle that can be opened with one hand. You don’t want to have to let go of your baby to open your water bottle.
Some people can feed their babies simply by holding them in their arms. Not me. I was blessed with a C-section and a nearly 10-pound baby. It was impossible for me to place her on my stomach or hold her very long. I have both the Boppy and The Brest Friend and could not have breastfed without them.
Nursing Supply Box / Bin
It’s a good idea to have a bin, box, or small bag to corral all the supplies you might need while nursing- especially during the early days when feeds can last a long time. I use a small canvas bin to hold items like the TV remote, lip balm, granola bars, my breast pads, burp cloths, and water bottle.
What items made nursing more convenient for you? Feel free to share in the comments below.