I am the queen of figuring out ways to make my life easier. Call me lazy, but I probably spend more time trying to avoid things that take a long time than actually doing them!
While I was pregnant, I looked for advice on how to make nursing easier. I had heard enough to know that in the beginning, it’s uncomfortable, awkward and you spend at least a third of your day there. Here are a few of the things that made nursing a bit easier for me:
Itzbeen Timer – This was one of the best gifts we could have received! I was so excited to get it because I kind of figured I would never remember all the things you need to remember — when they eat, poop or sleep. I didn’t bring this to the hospital because I thought they’d just know. When they’d come in to ask me when she ate last, it seriously took so much brain power to try to remember. I know that sounds silly but it made me feel crazy to not remember and I felt like I spent so much time those first fews days saying, “What time did she eat? 3 hours minus… it’s 10 o’clock now, so 7 o’clock?” That might not be the case for everyone but once we got home, it was so nice to press a button and be able to look back and see what time she ate. And I did find it extra handy to pair this with...
Feeding Tracker – My friend Jenny designed a notepad for me to write down when Vivi ate and everything. I’d start my timer when Vivi started feeding and then whenever it was a convenient time, I’d look at my time and mark down what time she ate. I bought a bunch more of these from her so I could keep using it. I just stopped at 3 months, and got a bunch for three of my pregnant friends since I found them so helpful. I have been telling her she needs to sell them, so go hassle her if you’d like some.
Waterbottle WITH TOP (not pictured) – Y’all, I don’t think I’m that clumsy, but I spilled sooo many glasses of water. I’d try to awkwardly grab my cup while trying to adjust Vivi and it normally resulted in a floor covered in water.
Disposable Nursing Pads – Most new moms will leak. These are a definite must if you do.
Lanolin – Use this religiously for the first two weeks and you will heal so much quicker. Tip: I’m not sure if all kinds do this, but either this one or the one the hospital gave me, stains clothes. I had a bad habit of wiping the excess onto my sweatpants. It eventually fades after a few washes, but it does leave things looking wet for a while.
Thera Pearl Therapy Packs (not pictured) – I LOVED these y’all!! You are gonna hurt for a little while. These packs can be heated or cooled depending on whatever feels best. Since it was winter Vivi’s first few months, the cold made my breasts hurt worse. The warmth was so comforting and it’s supposed to help if you have lumps too.
Prayer Journals – You will have so much time while you feed in the beginning. I prayed a lot during this time. I prayed for Vivi, for Tyler, for friends and family. I prayed for myself and really felt God work in it all. Some things I prayed for myself – physical healing and a quick recovery, joy despite new challenges, restfulness, peace about Vivi, my milk supply, Tyler and I to work together well. For Vivi I prayed for her health, feeding, weight gain, that she’d have a sweet spirit. It was incredible to see how God answers prayers.
Jesus Calling – I used to have a pretty laid-back morning and read my Bible or books for a good hour. I knew my time would be much more limited so I bought Jesus Calling and saved it to start right when I got home from the hospital. This time is so precious to me and it is truly necessary for my day.
Labor Verses – I created this to have handy during labor but I used this sooo much afterward too. There are moments negative thoughts creep in saying all kinds of things that really could have really affected me. I truly believe filling my head with so much Scripture helped ward off a lot of these negative thoughts! Click the link to get your own PDF copy with a new, non-Vivi specific cover. The last page has some notes from Joyce Meyers that I found helpful, too.
Bible – Some of you have asked where I got my Bible. Click on the link to find it.