Gentle Reminders for the Mama Nursing a Newborn

Nursing a Newborn

When it comes to breastfeeding a newborn, it's hard. Like chemistry and calculus combined with running a mile in 90 degree heat, kinda hard. And just because it's your second or third go around, doesn't mean it isn't just as hard as before. The only good news about not being a rookie when it comes to breastfeeding is that you're not as scared and you're a little more experienced. However breastfeeding each different child can truly be different for so many. 

When it comes to breastfeeding your little one, there are a few great tips that can help you manage through those first few weeks. Nothing can totally prepare you, but search around on this blog and you should find some great resources! 

  1. Feed on demand. As great as schedules are, you can't really think about that and you shouldn't because trying to schedule feeds too soon can result in decreased supply. Feed every 2-3 hours or when baby is fussy or appears hungry. In my home, a fussy newborn gets a boob. 
  2. Feeding to sleep isn't a bad thing. Some books and people will preach that you shouldn't nurse a baby to sleep because then they will never learn to fall asleep on their own. But when you're tired and exhausting because, um newborn, sitting there rocking or trying to pat a baby to sleep is ridiculous. Nurse that baby to sleep and worry about the rest later. 
  3. Hold off on the bottle and pacifier. I know those pacis are cute and all, but try to hold off about a week on those and about a month on a bottle. Sometimes babies become nipple confused and may prefer artificial nipples over natural ones. 
  4. Eat, mama. Eat and drink up! I know (believe me I personally know) that when you have a baby you go through the stages of "give me all the food" and then you come home to weigh yourself and realize you lost like a pound during birth (WTH only a pound!!) so then you start planning all of the diets and you're more like, "hide all the food". Your body and your baby need for you to eat and drink. Sure you can make healthier choices, but don't skip meals. Poor nutrition leads to a poor milk supply and a grumpy mama! 
  5. There's always milk. Don't freak out just because your baby is choosing to eat a lot or because your breasts suddenly feel like deflated balloons. There's milk in there! Babies cluster feed and hit growth spurts that rely on lots of extra nursing. Deflated boobs are a sign that your milk supply has regulated and is making just what your baby needs. While there are unfortunate cases of mothers who truly don't make enough or much milk, it is more rare to not make any milk; and low supply can often times see an increase with natural supplements and dietary changes. 
  6. A pump isn't a great measure of what you make. Often times mamas will pumps gallons of milk in the beginning, even while nursing their baby throughout the day/night. Give it a few weeks and you're suddenly nursing all day and seeing much less during your pump sessions. This is okay because your body is likely just making what it needs to, rather than making excess milk. A pump is never a good measure of milk supply because a baby withdraws more milk in a feeding than a pump can in one session. And the science is weird, but the more your nurse during the day/night, the less you'll pump when you choose to. 
  7. Take advice and don't take advice. There's SO much advice out there (like um eh, this blog post) and sometimes you don't know which way to go. The best thing you can ever do is listen to your instinct! I have also learned that people who didn't really nurse their babies at all or for a long period, don't often have the best advice. Grandmothers and older aunts sometimes have advice that now contradicts research. Just follow your instinct and turn to support groups on the internet, someone you know who successfully breastfed or your lactation consultants at the hospital or locally in your community. There's ALWAYS someone and there's almost always a solution! 
  8. Remember that it does get better. For probably 90% of mamas who stick it out past those first six weeks, it does get better. It gets easier, it gets less painful and it all becomes worth it. Sometimes in the beginning when your boobs are hard as rocks and when your nipples are bloody and cracked, you begin to doubt that it is all worth it. But it is. It truly, truly is. The pain will go away, the random leaks should stop and your baby won't nurse all day long. It will become like second nature and you'll miss it the day it's gone (well maybe). 
Tips for Nursing a Newborn Baby

Mamas, nursing a newborn isn't easy. It's sometimes the equivalent of what you can only imagine it would feel like to hook up jumper cables to your breasts. But it's also the equivalent of every joyful, loving and happy feeling you can imagine. If it isn't for you or if it doesn't work out, then be proud of what you did accomplish and know that it may (and should) be easier next time should you wish to try again. 

Nursing a newborn is a beautiful, wonderful and exhausting journey. But then again, that's really just motherhood summed up too. 

Thanks for reading and sharing, 

Sasha 

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Sasha Savoy

Sasha is the owner and founder of The Mushy Mommy, a natural mother and baby boutique and The Mushy Mommy Village. She is a SAHM who works hard at living as minimal and unprocessed as possible, but never claims perfection. Her mission is to inspire, encourage, enlighten and empower mothers all over to feel good about their choices, to make healthy choices and to enjoy motherhood and all of its beauty and chaos. 

The Cutest Birth Announcements

Disclaimer: This post does contain affiliate links and this product was sent for a review and received my honest opinions. Names have been blurred out on photos for children's privacy. 

I'm birth announcement junkie through and through! I love making them for my babies and I love sending them. I also love having that memento in my baby's book as such a precious keepsake. I put a lot of time and love into designing what feels like the perfect card! But sometimes it can be overwhelming when you receive all of the coupons in the mail on which printing service to use. 

When it comes to designing stationary and cards, there are so many options out there. I have used several different printing services through the years and I have to say that the guys over at Minted really have a good thing going! 

The designs at Minted are so sleek, so modern and just beautiful! I love that it can take my photo and quickly fill it into many designs for me to actually see what I like before I start working on it and I love how there are SO many options. Whether you want gold foil, rounded corners or catchy backs, Minted makes the cutest birth announcements and stationary and the cards are SO thick. I love the quality! 

When my package arrived it was personalized to let me know it was carefully packed and inspected; and I even received a cute card about the designer who designed the layout I had chosen. I also received the cutest address wraps that had our return address with a wrap around sticker on the back of the envelope that catches the recipient's attention. 

Minted has so much to offer, not just cute stationary cards. Although if you're dying to see cute photos of sweet babies, I recommend heading that way to see the adorable ones on their site. But seriously, they have some amazing art work, beautiful framed photos, gift items and more. I would have loved to have worked with them for my wedding seven years ago since they also provide wedding invitations and save the dates. 

Birth Announcements

The website is easy to navigate and totally easy to design any card - seriously, anyone can do it! Head on over and design your perfect card there and thank me later when you receive the prettiest package in the mail! ;)

I highly recommend the foil stamped cards too. They are stunning in person! I have always wanted to do foil stamped and finally was able to. I am actually considering framing my son's announcement for his nursery -- which was actually a discount purchase I could have made after I checked out. I had like an hour to make a few discount purchases and totally forgot to go back do it. That's what procrastination does to you, folks! You miss good deals! With that said, head to Minted and I bet they have a great deal for you for whatever your print needs may be! 

The design we chose (not my baby by the way) 

The design we chose (not my baby by the way) 

How cute is this backer? It was so fun to put this together for my son (again, this is just a premade example from their website). 

How cute is this backer? It was so fun to put this together for my son (again, this is just a premade example from their website). 

Lastly, I'd love to hear when you send out your birth announcements. What's your timeline protocol? Mine can never seem to make it out before two months, but it's usually done by then! 

 

Life With Three (So Far)

I've already started receiving questions from readers and followers about the transition to life with three children and while it's only been a month really, I decided to write a small post on it as well as sharing glimpses of our family. 

So life with three children...all under the age of four...ahhhh. 

Let's see, where do I start...

I will start with a very common thing that I have heard from other mothers. Two was a much harder transition than three. Period. 

I know it seems bizarre that two would be harder than three, but it was. I remember the weekend we returned home from the hospital with my second, I sat on the verge of tears what felt like for forever. Tears because I felt anxiety about my husband going back to work on Monday, tears because I just knew I couldn't do this and tears because of feelings I felt in regards to expanding my heart (which you can read more of here). 

Two was hard for awhile. I called my mom crying many days and she'd come over and help us. I felt like there wasn't enough of me to go around and I felt like I'd NEVER find a routine and get the hang of it.

TheMushyMommy

Well I am here to tell you that with three, it's easier. In fact had it not been for one bad week of toddler bed transitions for my middle child, I may have never cried this whole postpartum period. In fact, there wouldn't have really been "hard" days had it not been for her fighting me daily at nap time (FYI do NOT do any major transitions after a baby arrives). 

While yes I knew life was about to get crazy and chaotic, I never had that overwhelming feeling that I "couldn't do it." I knew I could. I knew I would eventually find a routine and get things together. I knew I would eventually sleep again. And while we aren't really there yet, I still know we will be one day. I know now that the hard days come few and far eventually and then you're left with nothing but amazing, joyful days. Then the hard days are just a distant memory and you go around telling everyone to have all the babies because it's a "piece of cake." Okay, maybe I exaggerated there. 

I'll also add that what it truly takes is support. Having a supportive partner who is hands on and willing to take your older kids out and about or someone who does their baths and dinners, is such a help. My husband has been amazing, along with my parents truly stepping in when needed. Lastly, you need oils and prayers.

Pray to be a good mother with patience, understanding, laughter and rest. Pray to take in the moments and not the hardships.

And oils... I just can't say enough about how much my essential oils have helped me through this postpartum period. They have kept many mothers from turning to medication, or weaning off of it, and while I've never needed medication - it sure helps to keep me in check! To read more on that from me, check this post out

I try my best each day to wake up positive and ready to go. I try my hardest to smother ALL of my babies with kisses and cuddles. I try to give as much one on one attention to them all (especially the older two now because obviously the baby gets a lot of me) - you can only do so much. One person can only do so much and you just have to know that you're doing your best, mamas. 

Newborn Photos

So if you're one of those people sitting on the brink of making a decision to have a third baby, then I'm hear to tell you to GO FOR IT. Why not, right? Life is already crazy with two, three is just adding a little extra crazy but a whole lot of LOVE. Yes there will be moments where every child is crying for you or where that sweet, little baby needs to be fed but you are tied up with a toddler sitting on the potty. And yes, your little ones may act differently and slightly disobediently just for extra attention because their whole life just changed in the blink of an eye - but it gets better. Just remember that you will get there. One day these moments will be just a faint memory. It won't be easy and I can't promise you won't cry, but you will get there. 

It's just a season of crazy and a forever of amazing. That's all I have for you six weeks into this, perhaps in a few more weeks we can chat again about life as a family of five. ;) 

What are you tips for adjusting to a new baby?

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Sasha Savoy

Sasha is the owner and founder of The Mushy Mommy, a natural mother and baby boutique and The Mushy Mommy Village. She is a SAHM who works hard at living as minimal and unprocessed as possible, but never claims perfection. Her mission is to inspire, encourage, enlighten and empower mothers all over to feel good about their choices, to make healthy choices and to enjoy motherhood and all of its beauty and chaos.