Breastfeeding - as a Mum to more than one!
My name is Harriet ( from the Instagram account Making A House A Home ) and I have 3 little ones, from 5 months old up to 4 years old. We live in the beautiful, rural North Devon.
I have been breastfeeding for 4 years now and I am joining Stylish Mum to write regular blog posts.
I will be sharing my experiences and, hopefully, some knowledge and wisdom along the way!
Now, I’m aware there are quite a few posts out there about breastfeeding aimed at first time Mums… but what about the second, third (or more), time Mums?!
We all know each breastfeeding journey can be vastly different each time - even for the same Mum, with separate children.
I think it’s important to remind Mums not to expect things to go exactly the same as they did last time.
It’s important to be prepared that this experience could be different!
Plus, the thought of feeding a baby when you already have a child/other children to care for can be a worry in itself.
How will you find time to keep everyone happy?
Maybe you have a child at school, and need to fit feeding around their schedule?
There’s no denying that breastfeeding can be difficult to plan, and it can be time-consuming (especially in the first 6 weeks). Maybe you breastfed your first and remember how much dedication it took, and are worrying about feeding your second?
Maybe you bottle-fed last time but want to breastfeed this time, and don't know how you will juggle it?
Well, let me reassure you that it is NOT as hard as you may think.
Personally, when Daisie was due I found myself feeling quite anxious about how I was going to squeeze in cluster feeding a newborn, while running around after two energetic toddlers!
Though we have managed perfectly fine and with a positive approach, you can too.
Some of the many benefits of breastfeeding, are that you do not need to spend time sterilising or making up bottles!
So every time the baby needs feeding, you will still be perfectly present and in the same room as the other child(ren).
While breastfeeding there are many ways you can multi-task to entertain your toddler, or older child, too!
Remember you will usually have at least one hand free.
You can read a book to them, you can do a puzzle together, you can even breastfeed sat on the floor (if comfortable) so you can join in playing.
The opportunities for multitasking to maintain some normality are endless.
There are lots of options to keep your other little one(s) included, engaged and entertained, while you are busy breastfeeding a baby sibling.
You can set up independent play activities - which you can supervise from your feeding spot on the sofa!
(Some age dependent ideas for this could be dressing up role-play, or themed sensory trays.)
Please do not be put off by the fact you think you will not have time!
I have 3 children aged 4 and under, and have successfully exclusively breastfed all of them.
I actually find it much more convenient, especially because it's flexible on the go and around other commitments - you can just whip out a boob like meals on wheels! Haha. And of course made even easier when wearing my breastfeeding clothes from Stylish Mum!
( Harriet showing us how easy it is to breastfeed in a Stylish Mum nursing dress)
Another really great idea, which I haven’t personally mastered yet, is feeding in the baby carrier!
Lots of Mums successfully breastfeed their little ones out and about, while baby wearing, in a carrier or sling. This would be a great knack to learn if you have school runs to stick to with a cluster feeding newborn! Plus you have both hands free - that’s a win win if you have things you need to do.
You need not worry about finding time to breastfeed, things will slot into place just perfectly. I hope this has reassured you.
No matter what method of feeding you choose, it’s going to be a little bit of a challenge initially to get into the swing of caring for an additional baby!
From one Mum to another, whatever you wish to do - you are capable of.
Don’t worry, just give it a shot.
Please do join us in our Facebook breastfeeding group to meet and chat with like-minded mums.
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