7 Things Nursing Moms Need to Know

This post is sponsored by Evivo but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Being a mom is a demanding job, and whether you've nourished your little one with formula or with breastmilk, I'm over here cheering for you.

Now that Emma is weeks away from being one, I can say that I've nursed an infant for two full years of my life. I nursed Aiden til he was one, and here I am having nursed Emma for a year. When I first started nursing Aiden, I thought it would be this dreamy, easy process. Which it sort of was. I wasn't chasing a toddler while I sat and fed him and watched Parks and Rec. (That was totally me with Emma, trying to nurse her and keep a toddler happy!) But after my first baby, it was still a hard adjustment for my body and for my expectations. I was the first of my friends to have a baby, so I didn't really know what to expect about nursing.

(Are you pregnant currently? Here's a list of 5 things no one told me about labor!)

If you're a future mom or soon-to-be-mom, let's pretend we're out to coffee (and my kids are with a babysitter) so I can tell you...
  1. It will be hard at first. Your newborn has to eat SO OFTEN, and your nips (can we call them that here?) will hurt because this whole nursing thing is NEW. Your boobs may over-produce the milk, or it may feel like you can't keep up with a baby that wants to eat 22.8 hours per day. They aren't awesome at latching, and you have to hold them just so. It's ok that it's hard. You are tough! You birthed a baby!

  2. It will (probably) get easier. Your nips (let's just go with it) stop hurting, and your baby won't need to eat as often as their stomach grows. By 6 months, if your little one starts solid foods, you suddenly aren't in such high demand to be their only food source! By 8-12 months, they can hold their heads up so well that all you have to do is lift your shirt up and they suddenly can do a perfect latch.

  3. It might be a mess. A literal MESS. Your newborn might poop up their back while they eat, and you don't even notice until suddenly your arm is a little wet and WAIT IS THAT A YELLOW STAIN ON THEIR BACK NOOOO. Plus, your boobs may leak at first. By my second baby, you'd think I'd know to wear nursing pads, but of course I forgot them and nursed Emma at a library story time.......and half my shirt had a huge circle wet spot on the other boob. Oh well!

  4. Baby probiotics will give them a healthy gut. I didn't know that Evivo a.k.a. baby probiotics for breastfed babies even existed until Emma was born! I talk about Evivo more over here, but basically it's giving your baby the good bacteria (B. infantis) to keep their digestive system in balance. 9 out of 10 babies lack this good bacteria, and here's a quick quiz to help decide if your baby might be missing the B. infantis bacteria: 
    1. Were you OR your baby born via C-section?
    2. Were you OR your baby given antibiotics pre-delivery or post pregnancy?
    3. Does your baby have diaper rash OR 5+ watery poops per day? 

      1. A few nursing-friendly shirts will save your life. I used button-downs (like this chambray shirt), loose tops to pull up with a cami underneath, and v-necked shirts to pull down so I could get my screaming-mad baby on a boob way faster.

      2. Staying hydrated and eating lots of healthy foods will energize you. This is important when you're barely sleeping (thanks, newborn baby!) and your body still needs to create food for a little life! Does this sound impossible, especially if you're on your second/third/fourth/eighth baby and have other kids to care for? YES. IT DOES SOUND IMPOSSIBLE. But it's not! Buy fruits and veggies you can eat raw (no prep necessary), and keep granola bars and other protein-rich foods around. I swear I ate more as a nursing mom than I did pregnant!

      3. You are a superhero. Your body created and grew a baby, and now you're nourishing a baby by creating their food. On the days when it feels like nothing else got done, remember: You're amazing. It's fine that there's 3-10 loads of laundry to be done. It's whatever. You made your baby's food all day. So that suddenly makes each day sound pretty freaking productive.
      P.S. Don't actually nurse with your hair down. I did it for these photos so you didn't see my whole boob (#honesty), but babies LOVE GRABBING YOUR HAIR AND NEVER LETTING GO. It's the worst. 

      If you're looking for nursing-friendly dresses, check out this post where I've rounded up my favorites!

      Have you nursed any babies?! What's your craziest nursing story? What advice would you give to a friend about to start something new? 

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