4 Moms on nursing babies

4moms35kids This week we have a set of questions related to getting things done while breastfeeding.  Here is another Q&A we did on the topic of breastfeeding.

How do you nurse and get everything else done around the home without having older children or family around to help?

I have 4 teens in the house now plus a few younger ones who are able and eager to help, but I do occasionally find myself with just a baby or two and no helpers.  Of course many moons ago, this was the standard description of my day!

When I find myself in that situation, I have to force myself to prioritize and do what I can, letting go of the guilt and stress over what I cannot fit into my day. This might mean Perry and the older children come home to a messy house and a one-course dinner, and we do laundry after the dishes are done.  In the old days, it meant that I rushed through housework during the baby’s naps – or napped when baby did and spent a few hours cleaning up before I went to bed.

If there are toddlers or other children who need attention while I’m nursing the baby, all of us get some training in the process: the baby learns that sometimes nursing is interrupted, and the milk will still be there in 2 minutes.  The toddler and preschooler learn that all of the usual rules apply, even when Mommy is nursing the baby.  I learn that consistency is more important than ever, or chaos will break loose and every boundary will be tested Every Single Time I Sit Down To Feed The Baby.  Dad learns that the household standard of living must relax a little unless he is willing and able to help out a lot.

At the end of the day, we are all a little farther along that road of sanctification.

Do you have a method for nursing and walking around? If so could you describe how?

Not I, though I know many moms do nurse on the go with a good quality carrier.  They say it’s not hard with an Ergo, a wrap, or a sling.  I never tried to master the skill because I felt it would slow me down too much.  I wanted to sit and nurse, then do my work with free hands.  With a baby plastered to my front, I was never convinced that empty hands = free hands. I do often move from room to room while nursing, keeping the baby latched as I go.  This is helpful when directing and instructing other little ones, as below.

Any other suggestions for multitasking?

A good attention span and well trained toddlers/preschoolers.  Even very little ones can be helpful while you are nursing.  You can sit in the children’s bedroom to nurse, and direct them as they clean up, item by item.  You can read aloud to the other little ones while nursing.  You can follow the other little ones from room to room, providing adult supervision so that the house doesn’t catch fire when they decide to cook their own lunch.  It all depends on how you define multitasking.

Do you nurse while writing?

Well, the computer chair used to be known as the booby chair.  Does that answer your question?

How would you answer these questions?  See what questions the other moms are answering today:

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  1. This is a comment for Heather. We have a small playroom with a few toys in it where I will send a child when they are acting inappropriately. It’s not a punishment but a reminder for them to change their behavior. If I have one that is whining and asking for things they aren’t allowed I just send them to the playroom for 5 minutes or more. They are welcome to cry, stare at the walls or play with the toys but if they are throwing a fit I don’t call them out until they have calmed down. If my child was asking for tv 50 times a day I would send them to the playroom 50 times. It doesn’t take long for them to learn there are better ways for them to spend their time than harassing me. The room does have a lock on the outside that I will use if the child is young and doesn’t know how to stay in it but even my two year old will go right to the playroom when I send him there.

  2. lol In my booby chair right now.

  3. I have a booby chair, too!

  4. Yes to all of the above! I learned some of this with my second baby but they were 4 years apart. My next baby came only 21 months later and my middle child truly acts like rules are meant to be tested. After my mom left, it took me a week of 2 year old rules chaos for me to decide that a screaming baby was surely better than the 2 year old running the house. He learned quick that mommy was NOT afraid to put down the baby.

    As for nursing while standing… I decided that is was my right to sit on my rear for those few precious moments a day. The only way I felt like I could cope those early months with so much nursing and a very intense two year old and a kindergartener to boot, was to release all guilt about JUST sitting and nursing the baby. Let the guilt go and absorb the rest God naturally built into your day through nursing that precious new life.

    • Elizabeth says:

      “absorb the rest God naturally built into your day through nursing that precious new life.”

      I second this point. When my first was born, I remember sharing with my husband that nursing is God’s gracious gift to exhausted new moms to MAKE them sit and rest. I have four kids, and I have found that it’s also a good time to read a book aloud to the older ones so that I get some time in with them too.

  5. Rebecca P says:

    *snort* “The booby chair”

  6. Laughed out loud about the computer chair! Hilarious. Love these suggestions too 🙂 We’ve done the directing whilst nursing from time to time. On those particularly bad days, the kids will tidy up the living room while I nurse when we know Dad is on the way home, just so we can have something nice for him to enter into! The funniest part is that my oldest ones always say: “We’ll get this house SO clean Dad will walk in and say: Whose house is this? It’s too clean to be MY house! Where is my house?” It has become quite the joke between them and him. 🙂 Precious memories in the making there.

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