Monday, February 14, 2011

I'm torn over whether to use nursing covers

Before Cupcake was born, I used to be appalled at the mere idea of using nursing covers.  Breastfeeding is natural, I would say.  Who are these backwards women who feel like hiding a beautiful experience with their children.  And even less idealistic, why would you go through the trouble of putting on a cover,if it's so uncomfortable and gets in the way of you kid feeding.  And what's more basic and functional than that?  I thought those mothers were setting back the women's movement, and that I would never belong to their ranks.

Now that I have a four-month old baby, I'm not as judgmental.  It's amazing how actually being in a situation will make you more sympathetic to what other's may be going through.  Duh.  And I feel thoroughly embarrassed by how adamant and judgmental I sounded about nursing covers.  I'm gonna chalk it up to pregnancy hormones, and leave it at that.

Breastfeeding is hard, though.  There's a steep learning curve.  And once you have figured out your vibe with your baby, something changes (growth spurt is usually the culprit) and it becomes complicated again.  As a result, nursing isn't always this easy understated thing.  I much prefer to nurse at home than out in public, if only because I have my boppy pillow at home. (As an aside, the boppy pillow might be one of the greatest items we got, it was so surprising to me.  We use it for feeding, naps, airplane riding, when she was smaller to elevate her head for reflux, it's a jack of all trades.)   So I've had some times when I felt I'd rather go home and feed her than be out.  Not because I"m embarrassed about my nipples, but just because it a bit stressful to have you boob out, while you're burping and have a squeamish baby.

So, after seeing the mom's in my mom group have some really stylish covers, I caved and got a bebe-au-lait.  Cute name, nice prints, awesome wire frame that allows you constant eye contact with your feeding baby.  And I even used it, because  around week 12 - 15 Cupcake started being a very fussy eater, and using a cover was a good way to nurse outside.  I even used it when we went to Texas and had to feed Cupcake at Hobby Lobby, multiple restaurants, the art museum, and in front of Nate's grandmothers.  Happy mom and happy baby.

But now I feel weird about using it.  Cupcake and I have reached a groove again.  She's efficient, doesn't need to bu burped till the end, and I have a good hold.  The cover only makes things more difficult, take longer, AND I've been feeling like I failed my ideals by using it.  Like I should put my money where my mouth was.  Because while I"m no longer judgemental of other moms, I still feel like it's not right for me.  So we'll see what happens to the cover.  Will I use it again?  Was it a waste of money?  Was it an item that was relevant for a few weeks but is no longer necessary?

I'm happy to nurse whenever, wherever.  The way I see it, it's better to have a happy baby than make sure everyone around you doesn't have their sensibilities affected.

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