Callie is almost two months old now (I’m in denial) and I’ve learned a lot about breastfeeding, pumping, and bottle feeding. There are so many approaches and strategies bouncing around that fellow Moms have shared, so I figured I’d contribute what my experience has taught me. Here are some tips to aid you soon-to-be, new, and/or struggling Mommies out there:
- Breastfeeding: Is TOUGH(.) It’s strange at first, then painful, then even more painful, it’s sweet, it’s degraded, and depending on your baby and boobs…it comes with many more complications. Fortunately, I have great milk supply; however, due to Callie’s severe acid reflux I am no longer allowed to feed her straight from the breast. While I was, my favorite thing to keep on hand was a nursing cover. I don’t judge any Mommy out there for how she feeds her baby, but I always felt more comfortable staying covered up. My go-to cover is from MilkSnob. I have purchased two for myself and a handful for all my prego friends. They are so versatile, soft, and cute! (not sponsored)
- Pumping: Makes you feel like a cow(.) I pump 100% of the time now. It’s not ideal when you think about that sweet bonding you’re missing with baby; however, it allows me to provide a natural source of food for Callie which I am both happy and proud about. Since I mostly pump at home, I enjoy wearing T-shirts with the sides cut out. This allows me easy access without having to take my shirt off each time (sorry to the mailman who caught me answering the door in a nursing bra). Nike currently makes women’s athletic shirts that already have rather large armpit cut-outs, which I like because then I feel a bit less slobbish. When I go out though, I enjoy throwing on a blouse that will be both functional and stylish: a nursing cami (I use Jessica Simpson ones) or tops with fasteners at the shoulders do the trick (I’m also loving overalls for the very same reason). This top is a current fave of mine. Its tie-sleeves allow for quick access and covering. This specific top is from the ASOS Tall collection (my new obsession; not sponsored). Paired with a sweet teething necklace can make for a cute outfit that any Momma would be quite proud of! Check out these gorgeous teethers from Wolf+Cub and use code ‘SAMANTHAKLANIER’ to receive 40% off your purchase! (sponsored)
- Feeding/bottle feeding: Can be scary(.) At such a young age, infants require your full attention during feeds. Whether you’re providing the breast/bottle, you must pay attention to how well they are eating and their reaction to what their eating. So far we’ve been lucky enough not to notice any allergic reactions to what Callie is digesting: to what I’m providing her or to the milk-based formula she’s also receiving. She currently eats 90% breastmilk and 10% formula. She’s also been placed on rice cereal recently and is taking it just fine. On the other hand, she’s been having severe episodes of apnea during feeds that landed us in the hospital last week for two days. The doctors have diagnosed her with a severe form of infant reflux and we are taking all the precautions we can to decrease further episodes. Being a new mom and a licensed speech pathologist, I recommend carefully listening to your baby’s breathing and swallowing when they feed. If you notice heavy/gurgled breathing, if they choke frequently, stop breathing for short periods of time, or do anything else that alarms you PLEASE consult their pediatrician. That’s what they’re there for!