Happy hump day, friends! I hope you’ve been enjoying this week. It’s starting to get really cold outside here in the PNW, and with that comes.. sick kids. Fun stuff, right? I adore the holiday season beyond words, but it’s the most stressful time of year in so many ways.
Today I’d like to talk about six nursing essentials I wish I’d packed in my first hospital bag. I can’t believe it’s already that time, but with the holiday craziness closing in, I figure two months out is as good a time as any to prepare!
First and foremost, I hadn’t anticipated having a small flood of visitors in the hospital. Whatever your feelings on this, I remember being in such a daze after laboring for 36 hours that I could barely see straight. I also felt- and looked- like a hot mess, which made me a bit grumpy when surprise visitors happened to stop by.
So, here are SIX breastfeeding essentials I wish I’d packed in my first hospital bag:
- Nursing robe. This time, even though we don’t plan to have hospital visitors again, I’m bringing along a nursing robe. This gorgeous maternity robe gifted to me by PinkBlush is technically both a delivery and nursing robe, and man, I wish I’d had something this pretty to throw on when attempting to soothe a fussy nursing baby in between visitors. Trust me when I say that a little prettiness goes a long way when you’re sweaty, exhausted, dirty and healing from delivery. This piece will definitely remain a staple in my closet at home too, because honestly, you’re pretty much naked while getting the hang of breastfeeding for the first month anyway. Throw your robe on, spray in some dry shampoo and you’re good to have visitors over, too.
- Boppy pillow. I don’t really care what others say; the boppy was a lifesaver for me! Learning to hold a breastfeeding baby comfortably is a chore, and having this pillow literally saved me on nights I was so exhausted I could barely hold him. Do yourself a favor and bring along some sort of nursing pillow support- it’ll make that uncomfortable hospital bed more bearable, too.
- Reusable breast pads. I didn’t anticipate my boobs literally exploding overnight. No one really tells you these things, guys, so imagine my surprise and frustration when waking up to rock hard boobs and a soaked shirt. You can totally bring along disposable breast pads or have the nurses give you some, but I remember being so physically sensitive after delivery that the last thing I wanted was scratchy pad-like material against my skin. These are made of organic cotton, and bonus that they’re eco-friendly.
- Nipple butter. Because raw nipples freaking hurt and this stuff really makes a difference. This is one of those situations where you might want to try various brands, but personally, I felt like most of them did the same thing. I like to keep my products as natural as possible, so I picked up this brand because it was cheaper and had less ingredients than others.
- Postpartum leggings. I honestly didn’t even know these kinds of leggings existed when I had my first son. All I can say is that I lived in (uncomfortable and cheap) leggings for probably the first 3 months after my son was born, and I wore the scratchiest pair of sweats home from the hospital. The fact that they make postpartum leggings now is amazing, and trust me, after delivery you’ll want all the physical support and comfort you can get.
- Swaddle blankets. Okay, so I’m pretty sure it’s standard for every hospital to provide the generic swaddling blanket, but my son hated it. If you do end up having a baby sensitive to textures like I did, trust me when I say it’s worth it to splurge for a more luxurious brand. We LOVE the Aden + Anais brand as well as Tula blankets for this. Plus, they can easily double as a nursing cover if you feel uncomfortable nursing in public.
And there you have it! There are definitely more items I consider to be breastfeeding essentials, but these are the ones I wished I’d had with me at the hospital. I think the robe in particular would have made a huge difference.
What would you add to this list?
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