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The Best Baby Wrap for Summer – Nominating the WeeSprout Tencel Modal Wrap

The Best Baby Wrap for Summer – Nominating the WeeSprout Tencel Modal Wrap

A great baby wrap promotes bonding, provides comfort and offers convenience. And with a hot and fun filled summer ahead, finding the best baby wrap to use while out on adventures or at home getting things done is a must. Features of a Great Summer 

My Unplanned VBAC Birth Story

My Unplanned VBAC Birth Story

My first baby was an unplanned c-section and my second baby was an unplanned VBAC birth (vaginal birth after cesarean). The best laid birth plans, right? With my first baby, I was actually a little relieved when the doctor said my labor was not progressing 

Postpartum Anal Fissures: The Horrors and The Healing Process

Postpartum Anal Fissures: The Horrors and The Healing Process

Yep. Postpartum anal fissures. The Mayo Clinic defines anal fissures as small tears in the lining of the anus.

One of the most painful issues a postpartum woman may experience, yet one of the least talked about. And given that the National Library of Medicine states, “…anal fissures occur in about 40% of pregnant women and women during postpartum period”, I think we need to discuss this issue more openly!

But, it’s really no surprise that we don’t. Any malady with the word “anal” in it, is the last thing anyone wants to discuss. But, I am checking my shame at the door. I want other women who are experiencing postpartum anal fissures to know that they are not alone.

And I also want to share what I did to treat my fissure at home. It took a lot of persistence and patience, but I came out the other side!

It’s important to note though, that in the case of chronic anal fissures, Klein Physical Therapy explains that home remedies may not cut it. Chronic fissures are those that have not healed within 6 weeks.

My Experience with Postpartum Anal Fissures

The delivery of my second child was fast and furious. I went into labor the morning of my scheduled c-section, and things progressed so quickly that I ended up having an unplanned VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). 

And with this surprise VBAC and all the straining of childbirth came a traumatized bum hole. And this was NOT something I was prepared for. 

I had some mild trouble with hemorrhoids prior to childbirth, but nothing prepared me for what I experienced after delivery. 

The strain of pushing had caused an explosion of hemorrhoids and swelling in my rear end. And a week later, I realized I had developed an anal fissure.

At first I assumed the pain I was experiencing was related to hemorrhoids, since I had never heard anyone talk about fissures as a potential postpartum issue. But after a friend mentioned that she had hemorrhoids and fissures after childbirth, it occurred to me that I too may have had a fissure.

So I consulted Dr Google and came to the conclusion that yes, what I was experiencing was almost certainly a postpartum anal fissure. My OB confirmed my suspicions at a later appointment.

Postpartum Anal Fissure Symptoms

Every time I had a bowel movement, I would break out in a sweat and cringe through the pain. It felt like I was being cut with a knife every time I pooped. 

And for hours afterwards, I experienced a strong  and deep burning and aching sensation all throughout my behind. This made sitting, walking, and really just existing miserable. And this was a daily occurrence for about 3 weeks. 

And as painful as it was physically, I found myself obsessing over it mentally as well. Because how could I not when I was hobbling around all day with a burning bottom? 

How could I heal my fissure? How long was it going to last? The thought of pooping terrified me. How could I find a way to sit comfortably for all those hours of breastfeeding a newborn? Would this nightmare ever end? What if it turned into a chronic fissure? The questions and dread were overwhelming. 

Home Remedies for Postpartum Anal Fissures

I was desperate to find a way to heal my fissure. And I was terrified that my fissure was going to become chronic if I didn’t figure out something fast.
So I religiously utilized the following for weeks;

  • Plant Based Salve
  • Coconut Oil
  • Sitz Soak Salts
  • Suppositories
  • Flushable Medicated Wipes
  • Peri Bottle/Bidet
  • Stool Softener
  • Prunes
Before I go into detail regarding the above home remedies, I want to also discuss what did not work. 

What Did Not Work to Heal My Fissure

First I want to share what did not help my fissure. Prior to realizing I had a fissure, I was using Doctor Butler’s Hemorrhoid & Fissure Ointment to help calm all the swelling in my postpartum bottom. I did not experience much relief with this ointment, but I kept using it in hopes it was doing something. 

After I realized I had a fissure on top of hemorrhoids after delivery though, I started looking through the reviews of the ointment on Amazon to see if anyone had success treating their fissures with it.

One reviewer commented that the ointment was actually harmful to fissures long term (beyond a week or 2 according to this reviewer), because there is a steroid in it that thins skin over time. And thin skin is the opposite of what you want when it comes to healing and preventing fissures. 

This same reviewer also stated that the vasoconstrictor Phenylephrine in the ointment is problematic, because it restricts blood flow. And fissures need a good blood flow supply in order to heal. So after checking the ointment’s label myself, I saw that Phenylephrine is indeed listed as an active ingredient.

And oddly, after further looking into the relationship between anal fissures and phenylephrine, I found some advisory information on the Doctor Butler’s site itself. And Docter Butler’s clearly states, “Oftentimes, hemorrhoid ointments contain vasoconstrictors like Phenylephrine, which should not be used on a fissure.”

So to sell an ointment that should not necessarily be used for fissures and to call it “Doctor Butler’s Hemorrhoid & Fissure Ointment” seems horribly misleading and like false advertising to me.

To be fair though, Doctor Butler’s also explains that hemorrhoids can contribute to the development of anal fissures, so treating the hemorrhoids ultimately helps the fissure. So in theory, using the ointment to treat hemorrhoids should help prevent fissures. But in the case of an already existing stubborn fissure, it doesn’t seem like a good idea to use an ointment with vasoconstrictors or steroids in it.

Products I used to Help Heal my Postpartum Anal Fissure

So after feeling disappointed that the goopy Doctor Butler’s ointment I had been smearing on my bum for weeks was likely counterproductive to healing my fissure, I went on a search for another product that could hopefully help speed up the healing process. 

Plant Based Salve

I settled on Thena H-Salve ointment. This ointment is a plant based product with the following ingredients;

Organic Avocado Oil, Organic Coconut Oil, Organic Lavender Oil, Organic Grapefruit Essential Oil, Canola Oil, Organic Olive Oil, Vitamin E, Organic Arnica Extract, Cera Alba (Beeswax White), Organic St. John’s Wort, Organic Oatmeal Kernel Meal, Organic Witch Hazel Leaf (non-alcohol), Organic Yarrow, Organic White Oak Bark, Organic Comfrey Root, Organic Calendula, Organic Arnica, Organic Plantain Leaf, Organic Nettle Leaf, Organic Rosemary Leaf.

So after making sure everything was nice and clean around my bum, I would apply this ointment several times a day. And perhaps it was just coincidence, but I started to notice some very small improvement in my pain level. 

So I continued to use the salve multiple times a day, for several weeks.  

Coconut Oil

Before getting the Thena H-Salve product, I was just using plain old coconut oil to soothe my fissure. Apollo Spectra explains that coconut oil helps moisturize and heal fissures. 

I also applied coconut oil to my fissure area before having a bowel movement to lubricate things. And I think that this was incredibly helpful to protect the fissure during those horribly painful poos. 

Sitz Baths with Sitz Bath Soak Salts 

I also used an over the toilet sitz bath as many times as I could in a day. I got to where I was doing 3 sitz baths a day, and this correlated with an improvement in my fissure symptoms as well.

home remedy products for healing postpartum anal fissures

I will say though, that when my hemorrhoids were inflamed, I actually felt like sitz baths made me more uncomfortable. I believe this is because soaking my bum in the hot water caused additional swelling as it brought more blood to the area from the warm water. This is great for promoting healing of a fissure, but not so great when it comes to already swollen postpartum hemorrhoids. 

So on days when everything felt swollen, I would take shorter sitz baths. It was a delicate balance, but ultimately I believe the sitz baths were very helpful for helping heal my fissure. 

And since I was having some success with the Thena H-Salve ointment, I also tried the Thena Sitz Bath Soak. Again, I do not know whether it was just coincidence, but I noticed my fissure symptoms improve even more after starting to use this soak regularly. It really helped soothe the pain more than anything else I had tried.


I also used Healing Bottoms Suppositories for my fissure. These suppositories are made up of turmeric, coconut oils and circumin. You put them in the freezer before using them and from there it’s pretty straightforward. Do note though, that turmeric is very yellow – so wear your oldest ugliest undies or a pad for any leakage.

Flushable Medicated Wipes

Rough toilet paper is a big no no when it comes to taking care of postpartum anal fissures. And if you have hemorrhoids as well as a fissure, it can make cleaning everything down there a delicate process.

So flushable wipes that are gentle on the bum and can also deliver some witch hazel and/or aloe vera to the area are a must.

Peri Bottle or Bidet

I also used a peri bottle with warm water for a while to help with the cleaning process. Most hospitals will provide one of these little squirt bottles after delivery. You can also buy them online or in stores like Target. 

And if you are using a bidet, just make sure you are not using a full pressure powered setting on that delicate skin and fissure. 

Stool Softeners

I was prescribed docusate sodium (colace) as a stool softener after giving birth, and I have continued to take this in order to manage my fissure. 

Constipation can cause or make fissures worse due to straining and hard stools. So keeping those poos nice and soft is important!


In addition to taking docusate sodium, I started eating prunes. No more than 5 in a day, usually less. Web MD explains that prunes are a good source of soluble and insoluble fiber, as well as sorbitol and chlorogenic acid. All of these components help move things along in the digestive tract.
And important to note when talking about prune consumption, Web MD warns against eating too many prunes. This is because they can cause diarrhea and GI upset. And excessive diarrhea, just like constipation, can cause and/or prolong postpartum anal fissures. 

Relief from my Postpartum Anal Fissure

After what felt like a million years and a billion sitz baths later, I started to gradually have less pain while pooping. It was a long process and required a lot of commitment, but the pain from a fissure is very motivating when it comes to doing everything in one’s power to support healing!

I also asked my OB at my 6 week postpartum appointment what she might suggest. She wrote a prescription for Rectiv, which is a nitroglycerin ointment. Aside from being extremely expensive, my hubby who is a surgical nurse said that nitroglycerin is a gnarly drug. So I decided to wait on filling the prescription, and as it turns out, never needed it. 

So I am happy to report that after a horrible month with a postpartum anal fissure, I can now poop pain free! I can tell things are still a bit delicate down there, so I am continuing to try and do a sitz soak once a day, but I can’t tell you how relieved I am overall! 

And I can enjoy my time with my baby so much more now.

If you are suffering from a postpartum anal fissure, know that you are not alone. And if you are feeling completely consumed and bummed out by your fissure, I think that is totally normal given the severe pain they can cause. 

To help other mamas out, feel free to share your experience or any products and strategies that have helped you in the comments below ♡

Nipple Pain When Breastfeeding And How To Manage It

Nipple Pain When Breastfeeding And How To Manage It

After going through Painful Breastfeeding as a New Mom with my first baby, I am happy to report that I have successfully managed nipple pain when breastfeeding with my second. I still experienced sore and painful nipples this second time around, but it never got anywhere near 

When Should Family Visit Newborn Baby?

When Should Family Visit Newborn Baby?

Topics Considerations – When Should Family Visit Newborn Baby?     1. Know Thyself     2. Protecting Immature Newborn Immune Systems     3. Establishing Breastfeeding     4. Processing Postpartum Emotions Establishing Boundaries with Newborn Visitors      1. Give Yourself Permission to Have Boundaries     2. Practice Clear 

C-Section Hospital Bag Checklist for Mom and Baby

C-Section Hospital Bag Checklist for Mom and Baby

 As far as my hospital bag was concerned, I was wildly unprepared after the birth of my first child. I had not yet prepared a bag when my water broke at 37 weeks, and I had not anticipated staying in the hospital for 5 days (I ended up needing a c-section, plus my son needed to stay under the bilirubin lights). So I definitely felt a little grungy by the end of my hospital stay. 

newborn during hospital stay

While having the right clothes or comforts isn’t that big of a deal relative to bringing a newborn into the world, I do think it can set the tone for the start of parenthood. Plus, those first few days in the hospital can be overwhelming, and the last thing you want to be thinking about is stinky socks. 

So this time around, as I sit here pregnant with my second child, I am determined to have the best hospital bag packed ever!

I have thought long and hard about what I want in my bag, and I plan to pack it a month or so in advance of my scheduled c-section date (just in case). And whether a woman is having a planned c-section or not, I think it’s a good idea to pack for an extended stay just in case something unexpected comes up during labor and delivery for you or baby.

My hospital allows patients to go home 2 days after a c-section if all is going well with recovery. So I am really hoping I will only be in the hospital for those 2 days, but know that I could possibly be staying an addition couple of days as well.

Mount Sinai explains that women typically stay in the hospital 2-4 days after a c-section. And based on my 5 day hospital stay with my first born, those 5 days felt like an eternity! A few extra comforts from home would have really made a difference! 

What Should I Pack in My C-Section Hospital Bag?

Below is a list of items that I plan on having for my hospital stay post c-section. And following the compiled checklist is a more detailed discussion on each item (quantity, considerations & product recommendations). These are my personal suggestions, but every woman likely has her unique needs and preferences. Hopefully though, this checklist provides a helpful starting point!

Keep in mind that hospitals provide essentials like swaddles, diapers, wipes, disposable undies for mom, pads, peri bottle, towels and snacks. So unless you have particular preferences in regards to these items, you will more likely than not be covered! You can always check beforehand with your labor and delivery department to see what they do or do not provide. 

For Mom


✓ Underwear/Postpartum Mesh Undies
✓ Socks
✓ Bras
✓ Sweatpants
✓ Zip up sweatshirts
✓ T-shirts/tank tops/long sleeves
✓ Slippers or easy slip-on shoe


✓ Toothbrush, toothpaste & flossers
✓ Hairbrush and hairtyes
✓ Shampoo, conditioner & soap
✓ Deodorant
✓ Tweezers
✓ Shaving razor
✓ Lotion or cream
✓ Towel or bathrobe
✓ Pads
✓ Over the toilet sitz bath or travel bidet


✓ Fruit
✓ Chips/crackers
✓ Peanut butter packets
✓ Juice boxes
✓ Apple sauce packs
✓ Granola bars

* Notes on snacks

Comfort Items & Tools

✓ Cell phone with camera and charger
✓ Feeding and diaper tracker app or notes app or journal
✓ Journal/iPad/laptop
✓ Soothing music or guided relaxation app or audio downloads
✓ Favorite blanket
✓ Pillow
✓ Water bottle

* Notes on comfort items & tools

Breastfeeding/ Pumping Supplies

* If you plan to breastfeed and/or pump *

✓ Reusable or disposable breast pads
✓ Nursing pillow
✓ Nursing cover
✓ Nipple shield (note: not always recommended by lactation specialists)
✓ Silver nipple cups
✓ Pumping supplies (funnels/flanges, pump and pump parts, bottle soap, baby bottles) – see notes

For Baby

✓ Baby blanket
✓ Swaddles
✓ Socks
✓ Onesies
✓ Anti-scratch mittens
✓ Beanies
✓ Going home outfit

✓ Portable sound machine

* Infant car seat for the ride home – You can contact your local police or fire station, and they will help you install your car seat and give you a safety walk through. Some retail stores also offer this service. 

You may also want to consider packing a nice snack item for nursing staff! I’ll be taking a big box of chocolates to give them 🙂

Considerations, Quantities & Product Recommendations for Hospital Bag Checklist Items


✓ Underwear
✓ Socks (2 pairs)
✓ Bras (4)
✓ Sweatpants/pajamas (2)
✓ Zip up sweatshirts (2)
✓ T-shirts/tank tops/long sleeves
✓ Slippers or easy slip-on shoe
✓ Going home outfit

Underwear and Sweatpants

If you want to be comfortable, these items must be postpartum friendly! This means, loose and comfortable material. And especially for c-section mamas, we don’t want any bands or fabrics that are going to cut into or irritate our c-section scars. Plus, your tummy will probably still be pretty big for a while as your uterus works on shrinking back down.

Kindred Braverly joggers for hospital bag checklist

As far as underwear are concerned, the hospital will almost certainly provide you with some disposable mesh underwear. So you probably don’t really even need to pack any undies. You will be bleeding after a vaginal or c-section delivery, so the mesh undies are nice because they can hold a big old pad really well. Plus if you get them a bit gooey, no harm done. 

I plan to take a couple pair of seamless underwear plus a couple of pairs of “period panties” anyways, just in case. The hospital disposable mesh undies are surprisingly very comfortable and functional though!

For sweatpants, I’ll be packing some lightweight soft and loose under the belly joggers from Kindred Braverly/also sold on Amazon (2 pairs). I have worn these joggers throughout my pregnancy, and think they will be great postpartum as well. 

I’ll also throw in a pair of over the belly Motherhood Maternity leggings as well. 

seamless bras and underwear for postpartum life

As far as bras are concerned, I’m taking 4 different kinds. I love these Calvin Klein seamless bralettes from Amazon (they are often on sale!). While not specifically designed for nursing (no clip on the front straps), I think they will work well and be easy enough to simply pull down. They are lightweight, stretchy, silky feeling, and have removable pads. I have been wearing these throughout my pregnancy, both to sleep in as well as wear during the day. One thing to keep in mind, is that these are not super hefty bras. But for those who may be on the smaller side or for those who just want comfortable minimal support, they’re perfect.

I also like Kindred Braverly’s Ultra Comfort Smooth Classic Nursing Bra (can also be bought on Amazon). This one has nursing clips, removable pads, comes with a hook and eye extender, and is made of a super smooth fabric (polyamide and spandex). And best of all, it feels more like a second skin rather than overly bulky like other nursing bras I’ve tried. It also comes as either a “busty” fit or a “regular” fit. 

In addition to the Calvin Klein bralette and Kindred Braverly nursing bra, I’ll be packing another old nursing bra and bralette. I’m not entirely sure what to expect this time around as far as breastfeeding goes and my milk coming in (it’s pretty wild how much your boobs can change in a day or two), so I want to have a variety. 

Shoes and Socks

Your feet may swell after delivery (mine certainly did), so socks and shoes with plenty of room to easily slide into are nice to have. They pump a lot of fluids into you during the labor process, and WebMD explains that water retention and postpartum swelling is common after delivery.

And for c-section mamas, getting up and walking around a bit as soon as you are able to is supposed to help with recovery. So having easy shoes to slip into for this can be one less barrier to getting some movement in. 

I plan on taking my roomy slip on crocs to wear around the hospital, along with a pair of sneakers or slip on boots that I will probably wear on my way into the hospital. 

shoes on hospital bag checklist

Shirts, Zip Up Sweatshirts

If you plan on breastfeeding, packing shirts and sweatshirts that will allow your newborn easy access to the boob are preferable.

I’m not a big fan of nursing bras or shirts, so I like having regular bras and shirts that are also nursing friendly.  

So, I plan to take 3 regular cami tank tops with 2 light drop armhole tanks to wear over them (I’ll also be taking 1 nursing tank, just in case I end up finding that easier for the hospital). And when it’s cold, a zip up hoodie as a top layer I can keep on while feeding (2 zip hoodies). This way I can simply unzip, pull the top layer tank to the side towards my center, and then pull the cami down or slip my arm out for easy access.

I’ll throw in a couple of t-shirts as well. 


✓ Toothbrush/toothpaste/flossers
✓ Hairbrush and hairtyes
✓ Shampoo/conditioner/soap
✓ Deodorant
✓ Tweezers
✓ Shaving razor
✓ Lotion or cream
✓ Towel or bathrobe
✓ Pads (optional, usually provided by hospital)
✓ Over the toilet sitz bath, small bag of epsom salts, and travel bidet (optional)
Not much to say about these items, other than staying on top of personal hygiene during a hospital stay can do wonders for a positive mindset. Having a newborn can feel quite daunting, so smelling bad or having itchy dry skin is just an annoying distraction!

Sitz Bath, Epsom Salts & Travel Bidet 

As far as a portable toilet sitz bath and travel bidet are concerned, these will just make everything down there feel nice and clean and comfortable. Constipation can be very very real post delivery, and if you have been struggling with hemorrhoids during pregnancy, those first few poops can be quite uncomfortable.

Taking a little sitz soak in warm water with some epsom salts mixed in can hep soothe the bum. Or if you only have a moment to spare and don’t want to pack a portable toilet sitz bath, a quick rinse with the travel bidet helps keep things clean and reduces irritation.

So I plan on taking a small portable “bidet” (you can purchase a little squirt bottle like this on Amazon), and having my over the toilet seat sitz bath waiting and ready to go at home. This way if I end up needing it, I can ask my hubby to bring it to the hospital. 

The hospital will also probably give you a basic peri squirt bottle if you don’t want to get your own. 


✓ Fruit
✓ Chips/crackers
✓ Peanut butter packets
✓ Juice boxes
✓ Apple sauce packs
✓ Granola bars

I was ravenous after my c-section, so below are some snack ideas to have on hand in your hospital room. Keep in mind, it’s a good idea to have some non-constipating snacks, since your first poop can be hellish! 

The hospital will also most likely have snacks available for you, so it’s not necessary to have your own. With my first born, the nurses brought us an endless supply of turkey deli sandwiches and juice. The first couple tasted great, however, after 5 days of those sandwiches, I was pretty much over it. 

The above suggestions are all non-refrigerated items, but you can ask your labor & delivery department if they have a refrigerator available if you want to have refrigerated items as well. 

Comfort Items & Tools 

✓ Cell phone with camera and charger
✓ Feeding and diaper tracker app or notes app or journal
✓ Journal/iPad/laptop/book
✓ Soothing music or guided relaxation app or audio downloads
✓ Favorite blanket
✓ Pillow
✓ Water bottle

Cell Phone with Camera and Charger

It’s a good idea to make sure you have cleared plenty of space on your phone for pictures. You will want to take a lot of photos to capture those first few special days, and there is nothing more annoying than having to go through your phone to delete old photos in order to make room for the new ones and missing precious moments. 

Feeding and Diaper Tracker App or Journal

I like the free app Baby Feeding Tracker and Log by Newborn Feeding and Care. This is to help you keep a log for feeding and peeing/pooping for your newborn. Before my son’s birth, I had no idea I would need to breastfeed every couple of hours in the beginning. I also didn’t realize I would be expected to keep track of his wet and dirty diapers, to make sure his health was on track. So having a convenient and easy way to track these things is important, especially if you’re not quite thinking clearly as you may be exhausted and sleep deprived. 


These items are useful in the event you want to write down any thoughts, feelings or special moments, or just relax with a tv show/movie or read up on newborn care in any spare moments. There probably won’t be much spare time, but you never know. So I’m leaving these items on my list, but I may or may not take one of them. 

Soothing Music or Guided Relaxation App or Audio Downloads

I was incredibly wired after my son arrived. I was anxious, excited and terrified all at the same time. Those feelings combined with those postpartum hormone shifts means that winding down and sleeping was difficult, despite total exhaustion. So having a little help with some guided meditation or calming music can provide some gentle grounding. 

Favorite Pillow, Blanket and Water Bottle

There’s nothing like having some comforts from home when you are tired and feeling a bit (or a lot) out of sorts. I plan on taking a throw size cotton muslin blanket, maybe a cozy pillow (depending on how big/many bags I end up with) and a big water bottle to help me feel a little more in my element.

Breastfeeding and Pumping Supplies (If You Plan to Breastfeed and/or Pump)

✓ Reusable or disposable breast pads
✓ Nursing pillow
✓ Nursing cover
✓ Nipple shield (note: not always recommended by lactation specialists)
✓ Silver nipple cover
✓ Pumping supplies (funnels/flanges, pump and pump parts, bottle soap, small milk storage bottles)
✓ Bottles
breastfeeding and pumping supplies for c-section hospital bag checklist
pump, reusable and disposable breast pads, nipple shield, flanges, milk storage bottles and baby bottle

Reusable or Disposable Breast Pads

Even if you’re not profusely leaking milk right after your baby is born, you may have some of that early colostrum seeping out and getting onto your bra those first few days. Better to have some pads you can change out as needed rather than have to wear an old stinky milk bra.

Nursing Pillow

If breastfeeding is a struggle at all, having a good nursing pillow is essential for a good latch. Once I got the My Brest Friend nursing pillow, I found breastfeeding much easier. I share more about this nursing pillow in my post on Painful Breastfeeding as a New Mom

Nipple shield

Many lactation specialists may refrain from suggesting a nipple shield, but in my case, I ended up needing to use one for a couple of weeks. You can read about my experience of Painful Breastfeeding as a New Mom for more information on breastfeeding challenges. So while I am not a lactation consultant or medical professional and cannot advise anyone one way or another, I plan to use one temporarily if my nipple pain gets so bad that I’m not able to nurse or pump. 

Among the reasons nipple shields can be problematic, The Cleveland Clinic explains that prolonged use can negatively impact milk supply, the amount of milk your baby is getting, as well as lead to mastitis.

Silver Nursing Cup

I just recently discovered these Silver Nursing Cups, and while I have never used them, I definitely plan on taking them with me to the hospital and trying them out. According to reviews, they are wonder workers and can help within a day of using them. And if you have ever dealt with Painful Breastfeeding as a New Mom, you know it’s no walk in the park and any small improvement is a big deal.  

silver nursing cup shells for sore nipples

These cups go over sore nipples in between feedings (held in place by your bra) and prevent anything from rubbing against them. I’m really looking forward to using them for this purpose, because it was so painful pulling away bras or breast pads that were stuck to my nipples due to dried colostrum or milk that had leaked in-between feeds. Additionally, Play Nourish Thrive explains that silver helps nipples heal because it “contains ions which have antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and antibacterial benefits”. 

I’ll update this post with a review once I have tested out the silver nursing cups. 

Nipple Butter

The hospital will likely give you a little supply of some sort of nipple cream, but if you have skin sensitive or allergies, you may want to select your own nipple butter. For example, a commonly provided cream at hospitals or available at retail stores is lanolin nipple cream. Since lanolin is made from wool, I always avoid lanolin creams because wool products tend to make me very itchy.

I’m taking the Calm Your Nip Balm by Honest. It’s organic, unscented, hypoallergenic and you don’t need to wipe it off before feeds. It has a bit of a greasy texture like vasoline, but not a big deal in my opinion. Plus I just love all products from Honest

Note: Instructions with the silver nursing cups state not to use nipple creams with the cups. 

Pumping Supplies

While I’m not going to take my pump and pumping supplies to the hospital with me initially, I’m having them all ready in a bag at home in case I need to have my husband bring them to me.

This is because I wish I had my own breast pump at the hospital when my son was born. I was planning on breastfeeding, however, I ended up dealing with some extremely painful breastfeeding issues and ended up needing to pump as well. I was able to rent a pump from the hospital, but it would have been less hassle and money if I just had my own (along with appropriate sized flanges*). 

On a side note, the lactation consultants during my hospital stay with my son did say that the hospital grade pumps are superior to most pumps people have at home though, so that’s something to consider if your milk supply ends up being low. Getting on a pumping schedule with a good pump can help boost your supply. 

It’s also worth checking with your insurance to see if they will cover the cost of a pump for you. Mine did, and we got a nice Medela brand pump and paid nothing for it. It was a bit of a process getting the authorization for it (you will probably need to ask your doctor’s office to send paperwork), but ultimately it worked out.

different sized flanges for pumping breastmilk
Different types and sized flanges for pumping. You will want to choose the right size flanges for your nipple size. I used all these different sizes, as my nipples were sometimes quite swollen and other times not. On the far right are silicone flanges I got from a lactation nurse, which feel much nicer than the hard plastic ones.

Baby Bottles

We exclusively used these Comotomo Baby Bottles with my first child, and plan to also use them for this second baby as well. For newborns, you can get the slow flow nipples for the bottles. Even though I planned on exclusively breastfeeding, I ended up needing to express and pump a little bit in the hospital, so I definitely plan on having one of these bottles handy in case I need to do the same again with this next baby.

como tomo baby bottles on hospital bag checklist

Hospital Bag Checklist for Baby

✓ Baby blanket
✓ Swaddles
✓ Socks
✓ Onesies
✓ Anti-scratch mittens
✓ Beanies
✓ Going home outfit

✓ Diapers and wipes (optional – usually provided by hospital)
✓ Formula if you don’t plan on breastfeeding or pumping (the hospital may provide formula and bottles)

Swaddles & Diapers/Wipes

An endless supply of swaddles and diapers/wipes are items that the hospital provided for us after the delivery of my first child. I imagine this is the case with most hospitals; however, I still plan to pack a couple of swaddles from home (one muslin cotton swaddle and one zip up swaddle).
baby swaddles and blankets for c section hospital bag checklist
I’ll also be packing 2 full body zip onesies, 1 short sleeve onesie, 1 long sleeve onsie, a pair of pants, a beanie, 2 pairs of socks, 3 pairs of anti-scratch mittens and one warm full body fleece onesie to go home in and 1 baby blanket.

My first baby was mostly just wrapped in a swaddle for our entire hospital stay, but I want to have some additional clothing options this time around. Newborn clothes are so tiny that they barely take up any space so not a big deal to pack but not end up using them.
Some people also have personal preferences as far as the types of diapers and wipes they want to use with their babies, so you’d want to pack your own if that’s the case for you. 

I hope this c-section hospital bag checklist is helpful on your journey into motherhood! Please share any comments with items you plan to pack that have not been listed above to share with other mamas ♡

Is it Good for Kids to Get Sick?

Is it Good for Kids to Get Sick?

Over the past couple of months, I have had some sort of flu, a stomach bug and most recently covid. There have been a few days of reprieve in-between viruses and bugs, but for the most part, I can’t remember the last time I felt 

When Does Morning Sickness End?!

When Does Morning Sickness End?!

My second pregnancy was brutal in terms of morning sickness. Or should I say 24/7 sickness. Why it’s called “morning sickness” makes no sense to me. In fact, I often felt the worst in the evenings and in the middle of the nights. In the 

Sandwich Generation Planning

Sandwich Generation Planning

According to Pew Research, the “sandwich generation” describes, “those who have a living parent age 65 or older and are either raising a child under age 18 or supporting a grown child”. And they explain that the sandwich generation often is providing financial and or emotional support for both their children and aging parents.

This can be a lot for sandwich generationers to manage. So what can be done to minimize some of the pressure and stress that comes with being sandwiched between older parents and young children? And how can sandwich generation adults make sure that everyone is taken care of in the event of declining health? Or in the event of an unfortunate accident or medical emergency, whether it be their own or their aging parents?

Below are some terms to become familiar with as you plan for your future security, as well as for your children’s and your aging parents. These terms are not covered in depth here, but below is a simple entry point to get started.   

Planning for the Future and Unforeseen Life Altering Events 

Putting plans in place that can be easily and quickly referred to in the event of a serious accident or physical or mental health deterioration is important. And this includes plans not just for aging parents, but for adults with young children as well.

Planning for tragedies and physical or mental decline in our parents or ourselves is certainly not any fun. And all of the legal processes to ensure everyone is taken care of can be confusing and complicated. But it is so important. Because as we all know, life doesn’t always go as planned. We are mortal human beings and vulnerable to all sorts of misfortunes. What we can do though, is plan and prepare. 

So talking with your spouse, with your parents and with your children (if they are old enough) about the future and managing any unfortunate events is something that can benefit everyone. It may take many conversations and quite a bit of paperwork to work out all the details, but doing these things sooner rather than later can help everyone avoid a lot of stress in the future. 

Establishing a Power of Attorney

A Place for Mom explains that a power of attorney is essentially someone that is legally assigned to make decisions for someone in the event they are unable to make those decisions for themselves. There are different types of power of attorney that can be designated, so those decisions may be related to financial, legal or medical decisions. 

So for an aging parent, issues that their power of attorney may encounter include things like dealing with medical treatment decisions, signing consent forms and making financial decisions about their assets. 

A Place for Mom recommends hiring a lawyer to set up a power of attorney (vs using an online document) so that there are no complications if the need to exercise power of attorney rights arises. And recommends all adults set up a power of attorney and that older adults address the issue immediately. Because if something happens that incapacitates a person (eg they receive a diagnosis of dementia), it will be too late for them to agree and sign their consent to assign a power of attorney.

Considering Long-Term Care Insurance

Long-term care can be very expensive. And Market Watch states that 7 out of 10 seniors need some kind of long-term care. This could be care from a “nursing home, assisted living facilities, in-home care providers, and adult day care centers”. 

So, it makes sense for aging adults to seriously consider a long-term care insurance policy. Because unless older parents and one of their adult children agree to a co-living situation, an elderly parent may need a good deal of care at some point. And Market Watch explains that nursing home care can be upwards of $100,000 annually, and that insurance like Medicare does not cover these costs. 

Other numbers Market Watch shares include $4,576 per month for a home health aide and $4,300 for a room in an assisted living facility (according to the 2020 national average costs). So those are some big numbers to contemplate. 

And the thing about long-term care insurance, is that if older adults waits too long to apply, they may not be eligible or will end up paying huge premiums. So in line with the theme here, is to plan ahead whenever possible. For yourself and for aging parents and for the benefit of your children. 

Setting up Advanced Directives

In the event of terminal illness or a major medical event, Nationwide explains that living wills and advanced directives are important to establish beforehand. A person’s living will describes what they would want done in terms of medical treatment and life prolonging measures in the event of incapacitation due to terminal illness.

Nationwide explains that an advanced directive is more broad in its scope, and would also include incapacitation from medical events other than terminal illness. 

Making a Last Will

A last will dictates who will receive your assets and property once you are deceased. You can also assign a legal guardian for your minor children, as well as name an executor. An executor is responsible for managing things like property and assets once you have passed. 

And once you have passed, your will goes through probate. Trust & Will explains that this is a legal court process that verifies and approves your wishes as outlined in your will. Your property will likely go through probate regardless of whether you have a will or not when you die, but having a will makes the process much easier. Avoiding a complicated probate means less estate taxes, legal fees, as well as greater privacy (as probate is public record). And if you don’t want the courts to decide what happens to your property, then making a will is a very good idea!  

Trust & Will also explains though, that there are ways to get around or at least make the probate process easier when it comes to wills. Making sure all of your assets have titled beneficiaries is one way to do this. 

Making a Trust

Unlike a last will, a trust does not go through probate. Nolo explains though, that a trust can be a little more complicated and expensive to make compared to a will, and also usually requires some maintenance. But like a will, you can assign beneficiaries for your assets. With a trust though, a beneficiary may start accessing those assets before you die if that is your wish. 

Nolo shares an article on when you might want to consider a trust over a will. For many people, a will would suit their needs just fine, but Nolo explains that factors like how wealthy you are and how old you are can help dictate if a will or living trust is more suitable. In general, a trust may be more advantageous than a will the older you are and the wealthier you are.

Sandwich Generation Planning

As a mother of a young toddler, I have seriously started thinking about planning for unforeseen events. I want to make sure that my toddler will be taken care of in the unlikely event that my husband and I were to become incapacitated or deceased. And I am also getting clear on terms like “power of attorney” and “advanced directives” so that as my parent gets older, I know what to expect and can make sure all is in order for his wellbeing. 

I think almost all parents hope that they never become a burden to their children. And dealing with these legal and logistical issues sooner rather than later is one way to ensure that we do not become a burden. So while most of us probably despise trying to figure out how to go about all of these legal documents, we know that it is well worth the time and effort.

Fighting Stay at Home Mom Shame

Fighting Stay at Home Mom Shame

After meeting someone new, I always dread that question, “What do you do?” This question used to be a source of pride for me when I was working (in a paid position) and/or was studying in school. Now though, I feel a touch of shame