Getting further along in my pregnancy, breastfeeding was definitely on my mind. I signed up for a class to take with my husband so that he could be aware of how to help me if I needed him. Well, I certainly needed the help. I think I texted every single one of my mommy friends about a million questions. I was pretty confident about it until the time came to actually start breastfeeding. Obviously, every pregnancy is different and I had a pretty good mindset about it, but I didn’t think the concept of breastfeeding would’ve been quite as crazy as it was.
If you aren’t able to breastfeed or don’t want to try, that is totally fine! Don’t let anyone tell you how to take care of your baby and *TRY* to not let anyone’s opinion bother you. I was lucky enough to make it through all of my difficulties with breastfeeding. To this day, I still have some stresses about my supply. I also struggle with staying in the right mindset. Though it is so hard some days, it is such a great bonding experience. I wouldn’t trade the ability to breastfeed for anything!
The class definitely helped get the basics out of the way. They tell you that as soon as your baby is born, they will magically find your boob and know what to do. That was not the case for me, but honestly has this worked for anyone?! This immediately stressed me out. When a lactation specialist was called in to help, she told me I had short nipples. Sorry, is that TMI? This new information added even more unnecessary stress. I then learned that nipples can crack if you don’t get your baby to latch correctly. This is so, incredibly painful. I can’t even explain how hard it was to get through this part. Despite the beginning being a little overwhelming, I made it home in the average amount of time because she gained an acceptable amount of weight. THANK GOD! At home, I was able to figure things out with help of many moms.
If I can help you take anything away from my experience, I’m hoping it is knowing that you’re not alone in the craziness that is breastfeeding. Here are some of my biggest tips that I’ve gathered from other mothers. I hope they help you too!
You are not alone and if you want to make it through, relating to someone is a huge help. If you don’t have any recent mom friends - Message me @KeeleySpagnola I would love to help give you peace of mind with whatever I can
Get a Good Robe for Maternity Leave
Being able to breastfeed easier/more comfortable is KEY to making it past the pain. I have a million selfies in this robe. It was and is the best thing ever! I got it for free from Ulta, but any good robe will do. I wasn’t a huge fan of the breastfeeding covers. I found them very hard to use. A robe, especially at home, can be a lifesaver!
Sleep on a Towel.
Not wearing a bra to bed helps air things out after cracking occurs. This helps them heal faster. The leaking won’t stop for a while, so having a towel keeps you from having to wash your sheets every day. This also helps you skip a step when feeding in the middle of the night. It was like night and day for me. I'm four months in and I still sleep on the towel just in case.
Bring your Pump when you Travel
A lot of airports have breastfeeding/pump rooms now! Feeding on the plane was impossible for me. Plus, it doesn’t count towards your carry-on if it's in a separate bag. Delta will check your bag for free if you say your breast pump is in there!
Do What is Right for You and Your Baby
Everyone is different and no one can tell you exactly how things should be. This pertains to EVERYTHING in your pregnancy and motherhood. Advice is nice, but don’t be afraid to do your own thing.
- Keeley S.