Anything that helps you to prepare for breastfeeding is a positive in my book.
When you are planning to breastfeed, there are certain things you can do ahead of time to make life easier when your little one comes along. You may have heard about stocking up on nursing bras and picking up some books to get your head around the whole thing.
You might even find yourself doing some research on different positions and products which aim to make breastfeeding easier.
Anything that helps you to prepare for breastfeeding is a positive in my book. It helps you to feel in control and embrace the great life change and joy that is about to come.
There are a couple of ways that you can prepare for breastfeeding and some of them might just surprise you a little.
Here are 5 surprisingly helpful ways to prepare for breastfeeding
1. Do some research on cafes, restaurants and shopping centres that have good breastfeeding facilities. We’re talking comfy couches, tasty treats and some of them even have specialised feeding rooms. This can make it a lot easier to plan social excursions and days out which you might be feeling anxious about.
2. Have you considered batch cooking? Breastfeeding is hungry work. I don’t think I ever enjoyed food as much as I did in those first six months. Everything tasted better and I was hungrier than I ever remember being before. Doing some batch cooking while pregnant gives you the opportunity to have a stockpile of tasty healthy food that is ready to be defrosted the night before. This will put less pressure on you when the baby comes and will give you more time to simply feed and enjoy the baby which is exactly where you need to be. I made Lasagne, a Shepherd's pie and a great big pot of stew for example. It made such a difference.
3. Research breastfeeding support groups and baby friendly social events. This will be something that will connect you with other breastfeeding mums and will serve as a great support to you particularly in those early weeks. Doing the research now means that you are already a step ahead. Most cinemas do a baby cinema morning where you can enjoy new releases with your baby on your lap. Imagine happily feeding your baby as you take in a movie and enjoy some treats? Ideal! Getting out of the house (when you are ready) can be really important.
4. Tell people you are breastfeeding. It’s not really anyone else’s business but the more people that know now the fewer people that will enquire about your feeding choices when the baby comes along. This can be difficult to navigate through when you are feeling vulnerable in those first couple of weeks. You might also be surprised by just how many people will offer to help, give advice and share their own breastfeeding stories with you.
5. Look up some of the breastfeeding challenges that people face and acknowledge all of the breastfeeding solutions that helped them. This can give you a great sense of confidence and help you to feel empowered before the big event. It is reassuring to know that if you do find yourself struggling there will be solutions to help you along the way. There are so many blogs and posts online which explore this.
Tracey is a happy mammy to four-year-old Billy. She is a breastfeeder, gentle parent and has recently lost five stone so healthy family eating is her passion! You can find her at www.loveofliving.ie.