The Nursing Mom

The Nursing Mom

There’s something about becoming a mother (and to a degree a father) that changes your perception about socially acceptable topics of conversation. Subjects that were once faux pas suddenly become fair game during a casual afternoon lunch with people you’ve barely met. For the mother, this shift is nearly imperceptible and it’s hard to remember that there ever was a time when you would have died before you discussed anyone’s bowel movements. (Does it make it better or worse that you are generally talking about your child?)  For those that have not experienced the initiation of childbirth these discussions can be extremely uncomfortable, and the worst part is that most moms won’t even notice that you are squirming as they discuss the intimate details of how they went into labor. I tend to think of myself as a tactful, considerate, and generally private individual, so hopefully today’s topic of conversation won’t make too many of you squirm – and if it does, I won’t be offended if you stop reading 🙂

Breastfeeding Cooper, I kept things very basic. For the most part I didn’t feel like I needed much more than me, a blanket, and a hungry baby. The experience was successful and positive, but for round two I’ve decided to add a few more “convenience items” – most of them at a minimal cost to me.

1. Nursing Pillow. I’ve had friends that have raved about their Boppy pillows, but whenever I’ve looked at prices I’ve always decided it was not a necessity. One day I was at Hobby Lobby and noticed that they sold “Baby Nest Pillow Inserts.” (I’m sure other places sell them as well.) It looked like a Boppy as far as I could tell, so I waited patiently until Hobby Lobby had a “40% off any regular priced item” coupon (as they often do). I also picked up some alphabet fabric in the remnant bin that was just shy of a yard, and purchased a zipper. With the help of this tutorial I made a cover and now I have my own nursing pillow for about $16. Around these parts that’s better than I can find a used one on craigslist.

2. Nursing Cover. I am one of those weird people that has nursed my kid on a bus or at a public park. I’m hoping an actual nursing cover will make things logistically easier than a blanket. We shall see. I used this tutorial to make the cover. I had a really hard time finding boning so I actually ended up cannibalizing an old bra. It saved me a few bucks and seemed to work just fine. I also lucked out in the remnant section with this one so the fabric was super cheap. Total cost: about $5

3. Reusable Nursing Pads. I’m a fan of reusable nursing pads. (Are you surprised?) When Cooper was really young I felt like I was constantly washing the few that I had, so I’m going to use this tutorial to make a few more pairs so I’ll never have a shortage.

4. Double Electric Breast pump. With Cooper I had a single manual one. It made my hand tired and was so time consuming that I rarely used it. Because Cooper so rarely drank out of a bottle, he pretty much refused to take them. This made for really frantic calls from Noel when I left the two of them together. This was definitely my most expensive nursing purchase, but I did wait for a sale and then used a coupon 🙂

5. Cute Nursing Top. I wouldn’t deem this one a necessity and I don’t even know that I would say that it adds that much convenience, but there was something about wearing nursing capable clothes for months on end that made me feel frumpy. I’m thinking about making this ruffled nursing tank so I can feel a little more pretty during that time period. Pair it with a cardigan and I’ll be good to go.

12 thoughts on “The Nursing Mom

  1. I should try to hand-make breast pads. The ones I purchased hurt, so I always default to the soft, disposable ones. I think it’s funny that we all of the sudden can talk about these subjects, but in a way, the comfortableness (is that a word?) helps me to get over my blushing. Does that make sense? When discussing body functions in social circles (or even with acquaintances!) I used to blush, but I don’t anymore. One too many blow-outs I suppose, and now it’s easy to talk about it!

  2. I love my boppy (a hand-me-down 🙂 ), I agree they are way too pricey! And I might just have to try out those tutorials for the nursing cover and nursing pads! (I also have a hand-me-down nursing cover – but I think I want to make one for fun, and with fabric I want… 🙂 )

  3. Okay, so as for too personal, I’m a bit embarrassed to ask, but since we’re on such topics, I was just thinking today of making cloth menstrual pads–have you tried those??

    1. Well since we’re on the topic 🙂 I’ve tried one cloth pad (Luna Pad). The pad itself was fine, but didn’t really stay in place. I know a gal that says she uses her kid’s bumGenius inserts and she says that works really well – although I imagine it’s somewhat bulky. I’ve always leaned more towards tampons myself so I actually have a Diva Cup that has worked pretty well for me.

  4. for being a non-mom, I think I am pretty good about not being squirmish about this stuff. What get’s ME is the actual birthing stories- I was horrified after reading the process on an old roommates blog, and another one over the phone! I’ve decided that maybe reading those weren’t the best thing for me…

    I had never heard of a nursing pillow? I was pretty confused at first, thought maybe the baby used it…but it’s for you…right?? *clueless*

    I am actually so impressed lately by the cute and trendy prego clothing lately! I may or may not have been in the Target clearance section a few days ago, pulled out not one, but TWO tops that I was considering trying on…both, to my dismay, ended up being maternity wear.

    1. He, he. The pillow kind of wraps around you and then the baby sits on the pillow so you don’t have to bend over and/or kill your arms holding a baby when you feed them. They’re also great for a baby that wants to lounge or is learning to sit up since you can kind of stick them in the hole. I’ve grabbed a few maternity tops off the clearance rack at Target lately, maybe they were some of the ones you liked 🙂

  5. So true! What brand of nursing pads did you use? I tried both milk diapers and lily pads, but neither of them worked as well as I would have liked.

    1. I have some Nuk nursing pads. They were just what was on the shelf at Target. They worked fine, but weren’t anything too special. I have high hopes for the fleece ones I’m making though.

  6. Now that I am finally entering the Mommy realm, I love talking to other people about their ideas and reading blogs from other Moms. I have been enjoying your blog immensely, it if fun to read and had a lot of good stuff. : D So curious about the breastpump…I keep having people tell me that I don’t need one, but I’m pretty set on getting one anyway. Any tips on what to get, where to get it, how to get a good coupon as well as any other nursing wisdom?

    1. If you’re a stay-at-home mom you can generally manage without a pump since you’ll pretty much always be available to feed your child. However, I think it’s kind of nice to have a pump because then you don’t always have to be available 🙂 I’m not an expert on the subject, but both my manual and my electric pump are Lansinohs. I mostly based my choices off of reviews on Amazon. The manual was 1/3 the price of my electric, but required a fair amount of effort on my part. If the small workout doesn’t bother you (or if you are blessed with an abundance of milk) and you plan to only pump occasionally this is a really good and cost effective option. The coupon I used wasn’t specifically for the pump (our Target has been remodeling and they sent out coupons for discounts off of certain purchase amounts to drum up business), although depending on your hospital you might get a coupon when you deliver for their mom and baby store that you might be able to use on a pump purchase, maybe 🙂

  7. I just have a little manual pump, too, but one of my other friends said insurances will (may?) actually cover the cost of an electric one, but insurance companies don’t like you to know that (of course). Audrey, I’m sure you don’t want to know that now that you already bought one, but for someone who is looking into it, it might be helpful to check with insurance plans and coverage.

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