Hey! Thanks for checking out my blog, I hope it is useful to you! If you haven’t read my One Year Breastfeeding post, go check it out here!
First and foremost, if I could only recommend ONE product to you breastfeeding mamas, it would be a Haakaa. If you’ve never heard of it, a Haakaa is a silicone “pump” (I wouldn’t actually call it a pump, although it’s in the description). Basically, when you sit down to breastfeed your little nursling, pop this silicone pump on the opposite side you are feeding him/her from & it will catch extra milk! Make sure when you use it, flip the top backwards then flip it back when you put it against you. If you don’t leak, it can still work for you! After the first few weeks I never really leaked unless I had gone a couple hours without nursing/pumping. But I still used the Haakaa and got 0.5-2 oz every time I fed Kash. By the time my 10 week maternity leave was over, I had about 170 oz in my freezer and 95% of it came from the Haakaa. After about 4 months, my supply really regulated & it stopped working for me, but it is still 100% worth it.
Next, my actual pump. I use the Spectra S2 model and I love it! Not that I love pumping, but it actually makes it so easy. The spectra is a closed system pump so milk doesn’t get in the tubes & cause molding. It is really user friendly, it didn’t take me very long at all to figure out the best settings for me. Most of the time health insurance will cover a pump when you have a baby. I went through Aeroflow Breastpumps to bill my insurance and they made it SO easy! They will also let you know if your insurance covers supplies. I got a text every other month for the whole first year asking if I was still breastfeeding, when I hit yes, they sent me a whole new set of pumping attachments for free! FYI, Spectra makes an S1 model too, the only difference is the S1 has a rechargeable battery, so if you can (it was a $100 upcharge for me) go for the S1!
A must have while pumping at work is this wet/dry bag. Instead of washing pump parts after each session, I just put my parts in this bag, throw them in the fridge, and they’re good to go for the next time. No washing involved (at least until I get home)!
First on the list of accessories, nursing bras! I have three main categories of bras: leaving the house bras, sleeping bras, pumping bras. My favorite nursing bras for “leaving the house” are the Auden brand at Target. My favorite is the wired t shirt bra, but they have wireless options. They are super affordable and have held up really well for me. My sleeping bras and pumping bra all came from Walmart! They are SO cheap & great quality. The sleeping bras are so comfortable and require zero effort when it’s 2 am & your baby wants to nurse. They do come with removable padding, so I just took those out since I only sleep in them. The pumping bra I use is so easy, it’s strapless so when I go to pump, I just unhook my nursing bra and wrap the pumping bra around me so I don’t have to take my regular bra all the way off to pump. Nursing bras, GOOD nursing bras, are a MUST have for a good nursing experience.
I also highly recommend a nursing pillow. Personally, I love the Boppy. I took it to the hospital with me and it was a life saver. When I would forget to grab it before I sat down, it seriously felt like my arm was going to fall off, ha! During those first few weeks of cluster feeding, the Boppy was the only way I could actually get something to eat since it freed my hands!
One last thing before I leave you, when you come home with that precious little baby boy or girl, find a new show on Netflix, make yourself a snack cart beside your rocking chair, and expect to sit there for the next 4 weeks, ha! Breastfeeding is so rewarding, but it is not easy! Remember, you just carried that baby for 9 months & gave birth, you can do anything! You got this mama, feel free to reach out to me for support or any questions! I am here for you. Thanks for reading!