‘Twas the night before World Breastfeeding Week, and all across the earth
Babies need feeding right after birth;
This year there will be more awareness and care,
In hopes that breastfeeding will be successful here and there;
Then children will be well-fed, all snug in their beds,
While visions of leaky boobs dance in their heads
4 Ways to Celebrate World Breastfeeding Week
Help break a world record
“The Global Big Latch On takes place at registered locations around the world, where women gather together to breastfeed and offer peer support to each other. Their friends, family and community join this celebration to promote and support breastfeeding.” The total number of participants are counted at each gathering in hopes of breaking last year’s record. Find or organize your own local Big Latch On event!
You can also participate in the Big Latch On’s “Selfie Sunday” where for 24 hours on Sunday August 6th they will count all the breastfeeding or pumping selfies posted with the hashtag #mybiglatchon.
Make Boob Cupcakes
People cannot refuse cupcakes, even when said cupcakes are shaped like boobs. It is a great way to spread awareness about the importance of breast milk to family and friends. Plenty of inspiration exists on Pinterest!
Become a Breast Milk Donor
Making a donation to a milk bank can help make a big difference for babies in need. While the qualification process can take a few weeks, it is worth the effort to give vital nutrients to newborns, especially premature babies and those with allergies to formula. You can even donate frozen bags that you have leftover in your freezer for up to 10 months. There may be a milk bank in your area or you can go through a national milk bank organization.
Make a Breastfeeding Checklist
Preparing for breastfeeding during pregnancy can be extremely helpful so that you are ready to start right away. Take this week to consider all the things that will help you along your way. Some suggestions are:
Put a Lactation Consultant on Speed-dial
Getting a good latch can take time and assistance. Help from a lactation consultant or support person can save you from giving up on breastfeeding, especially during day three and four when most parents are statistically more likely to throw in the towel. Ask your doctor or midwife for a Lactation Consultant referral or join a local La Leche League group for peer support.
Get Your Supplies
Nipple cream, bra pads, a breast pump – it is fine if you never need these items, but you need them, you NEED them. Don’t run to the store at 2am because you need to buy a breast pump to relieve engorgement or get ointment for cracking nipples. Keep a few emergency items on hand. It is also good to know that you can likely get a breast pump covered 100% by your insurance. You can look up which breast pump suppliers work with your insurance plan here.
Talk to Your Friends and Family
Community support is a big piece of the breastfeeding success pie. Make sure that your family knows about your intention to breastfeed and tell them what support looks like to you (i.e. being ok with breastfeeding in public, taking time aside to let you sit and nurse when you are out with them, etc). If you sense they aren’t going to be supportive, make sure they know you aren’t interested in hearing their opinion. Joining a lactation support group like La Leche League can help you find people that will encourage you to keep breastfeeding even if people in your life aren’t being supportive.