Thursday, May 3, 2012
The Nursing List of "Must Haves"?!?!?!
I started with clothes, getting ride of about 75% of our baby clothes. That meant that one cubby (in the cube type shelfs from Target) would remain with each size of clothes (yeah... between seriously lovely hand me downs and baby gifts we had a ton of really cute pink clothing!). I gave away 99% of the clothing labeled "newborn" because we've never actually had a "newborn" sized child. I brought a 0-3 month outfit to the hospital last time because it was pretty obvious that Mae wouldn't be much smaller than her sister and a washed newborn outfit doesn't usually fit an over nine pound baby too well. And since both our girls have been into 3-6 months at around 4 weeks... the 0-3 section had some serious pruning too.
Then we went over gadgets and furniture. The high chair stayed. And the Moby Basket and the bassinet (and the crib Mae will eventually have to give up... which is good since she's able to almost climb out of it now) all made the cut. But the glider had seen better days (and had a tendency to break, although it had been patched together over and over again). And so it, and the rest of the baby gadgets/furniture were out the door (we did sell some of the clothes and other items to Once Upon a Child).
Apparently the "necessities" for breastfeeding include a giant electric pump with a huge bag and some storage containers and an ice box (there was a small picture of a manual "starter kit" too), a wide assortment of bottles, milk bags, "micro steam bags" (I don't even know what those are), pads, lanolin, a nipple shield, and special wipes to clean everything.
I'll admit it is totally possible, especially if you're going to be away from your baby a lot and you're going to nurse, that you'll need all those items. However... as someone who nursed for 42 months and who's about to start round three I can tell you that my list is much shorter if you're going to be around baby all the time.
My list includes a nursing cover and pads. And really, I ended up using receiving blankets as often as I used my cover with Mae, so I guess nursing pads would be the only item on my list.
I could pretend that I didn't end up using any of those extra things beyond the first six weeks of Sadie's life to make up bottles, because I wanted to do the natural thing, but that would be a lie.
I don't like extra work when I have a newborn. Okay, honestly, I don't like extra, unnecessary work, ever. And all those extra breastfeeding gadgets are a lot of work. Boiling (we had well water) and washing got old pretty fast when I knew that I could just nurse her and have no clean up whatsoever. And since she wasn't a bottle fan, we were both happy.
With Sadie I thought it might be nice to be able to give her a bottle when we were out in public, but I quickly realized that the hours and hours of colic that followed every sip out of a bottle weren't worth it and that nursing discreetly was pretty simple in the right clothes (although layering for easy feeding took some time to figure out, the cami secret panels actually made it much easier for me!).
These days I'm realizing more and more to take those "must have" lists I see on baby sites with a grain of salt. Many of the sites are trying to sell things... and in my experience most of those "necessities" just got in the way. I need a wrap and diapers and a cuddly sleeper... Maybe I should make my own, much shorter list...