As a first-time mom, I was shocked at how much time breastfeeding takes up. Let’s say it is 30 minutes for the little one to feed, but add 5 minutes before and after to get yourself prepared and then to clean up. This really puts it at 40 minutes, then 2 hours later you do it again. That is a lot of time sitting around feeding. You are a human vending machine. I don’t regret choosing to breast feed but I just wasn’t mentally prepared for how challenging it would be. Now, to the point, what do you do during your breastfeeding times. The first week I just stared at my little one because he is beautiful and perfect but as the weeks pasted I realized I needed something to do. Here are the easy things to do while breastfeeding.
- EAT and hydrate: I can’t be the only mom that struggles with getting enough to eat. I am so busy that it is easy to forget, also looking around my kitchen it is hard to find quick, easy, and healthy things to eat (I’ll happily take recommendations). While breastfeeding it is important to be well fed to keep your supply up, I knew that I needed to try harder to increase my food intake. Breastfeeding is the perfect time to eat and drink water. I make sure I have a snack and my water bottle ready to go when I sit down to feed the baby. This is the perfect time to do this because I can’t really move and it doesn’t involve a lot of work. It is working for me very well. Just be sure not to get crumbs on your little one!
- Read: Once you master the one-handed book/kindle hold you are set. It is an easy stress-free activity that you can do sitting down. I personally love to read so this worked out nicely. Will you need to set down your book to readjust, yes. Just be sure to keep tabs on what page you are on, because you try to add a bookmark to the mix and it gets more complicated. Also, I like to read out loud so my little can hear it, extra bonding and entertainment for me. At times I was too exhausted to want to read but it was a perfect fix when I was feeling anxious to do something.
- TV: Time to binge watch your favorite TV show. Netflix and breastfeeding truly go hand in hand. I will be honest and say that with the baby moving or crying you sometimes miss pieces so I stuck to shows I had already seen (Friends, Parks & Rec, and The Office!), this meant they didn’t distract me from my little man if he needed me.
- Music: This was event better for me than TV. I would put on some calming tunes, thank you Spotify for letting me make my perfect playlist, and relax. When you are relaxed so is your little one. Plus, I always think about what my little boy is absorbing and some of the TV stuff I want to avoid as much as possible.
- Write: I love to blog, Instagram, or just write for myself, while I’m breastfeeding. I find writing to be therapeutic and with my cell phone I can type one handed. This gave my brain something to concentrate on that wasn’t just sitting around watching TV.
- Talk to your Little One: This is an obvious option, I love talking to my baby while he eats. We are so close and cuddly it is natural to ooo and awe over him. I take advantage of my couch time with other things but the thing I do the most is have a conversation with my little man. It is just one more way to build that one of a kind relationship.
Breastfeeding is such an interesting experience, it is challenging but bonding. I have had my struggles with it but I am glad that I haven’t given up yet. I’ll keep striving to move forward with it each day.
I recently read some truly cruel remarks on social media about mothers that don’t exclusively breastfeed, words like selfish and irresponsible were thrown out. Mothers should support mothers and the best baby is a fed baby. Cheers to you amazing moms, whether you breastfeed, pump, or use formula.