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When you have a newborn, approximately 90% of your time is spent breastfeeding. (I’m sure there’s a study somewhere that verifies this. Hold on while I find it…) It’s no wonder you need your nursing station to be on point just to feel remotely comfortable.
In the first few weeks when Kiwi was perennially attached to my boob, I was lucky enough to have lots of family around. “Can you bring me my water?” I’d ask the second she latched because of course I never remembered to bring my trusty water jug with me.
Water isn’t the only thing you’ll want on hand while nursing your newborn. After all, you’ll want to be fed, hydrated and comfy during those many, many hours you spend nourishing that tiny baby.
Here, then, is what you’ll need to set up the perfect nursing station.
Build your perfect nursing station
Water. Stash a few bottles of H2O where you typically breastfeed. Having spares will prevent that “oh no!” desperation when you realize you left your glass on the other side of the room.
Food. I swear breastfeeding burns as many calories as training for an Iron Man. Keep snacks that are easy to eat one-handed, like bananas, granola bars and cherries, nearby.
Your phone. Once a mom recommended that I never look at my phone while breastfeeding, but you can stare adoringly at your breastfeeding child only so many hours a day. For the other times, you’ll want to scroll through Facebook. Just don’t google the weird ridges on your newborn’s fingernails (or any other strange thing you notice). You don’t need the internet to convince you your kid has some life-threatening condition.
And whether or not you ever share them, you’ll probably want to take a bunch of breastfeeding selfies. Trust me—you’ll get all emo when you look back on them once you’ve weaned. (Plus, brelfies are good for you and society, says the UN! And look, Kiwi and I are famous!)
A stool. Nursing is much more comfortable if you prop your feet up on something. Warning: If you have an older child, too, she will use it to play on and cry when you actually need it for nursing.
Nursing pads. Something no one ever told me: Your boobs leak. I hate walking around with the telltale wet spot on my shirt and milk stains all over my clothes, so I keep a stack of nursing pads nearby and tuck one into my top whenever I feed Kiwi.
Burp cloths. You’ll want a few of these to put over your shoulder if your kiddo’s a spitter. You can also put one under her head while she nurses to sop up the dribbles.
Nursing pillow. In the first few weeks especially, you’ll want the support of a Boppy, Breast Friend (my personal favorite) or other nursing pillow. As you grow more comfortable (and your baby gains head control), you may stop using it, but it really helps at the beginning.
Did I miss anything that should be in the perfect nursing station?