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Gifts for The Breastfeeding Mother

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Welcome to the second Breastfeeding Carnival. For those of you just tuning in, once a month four other bloggers and I join together to post on a specific theme. Last month, in time for Thanksgiving, we did Home for the Holidays. This time, we bring you Gifts for the Breastfeeding Mother.
Jennifer at The Lactivist has a list of some goodies we all may want.
Angela at Breastfeeding123 has tips for buying cost-effective gifts.
Tanya at The Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog has a lactation consultant’s take on all of this.
Sinead at BreastfeedingMums Blog has her personal wish list; at the top is a full night’s sleep!
We also have some thoughts from two visiting bloggers: I Don’t Know and Momma’s Angel.
As for yours truly, I’ve composed an ode to my digital video recorder. So read on…
I Want My DVR
I want my, I want my, I want my D-V-R…
That is my anthem for the breast feeding mom. For the holidays, there is nothing a breast feeding mom (or any new mom, for that matter) needs more than a Digital Video Recorder. Yes, that’s right, I’m advocating melting your brain while you breast feed. Breast feeding is your license to sit down, kick back, and watch some television in the middle of the day. And with a DVR, you can watch whatever you want, whenever you want.
Dire Straits must have been on to something way back in 1989 when they wrote “Money For Nothing“– a/k/a– “I Want My MTV.” And if the band was around today, I’m certain the lyrics would have been “I Want My D-V-R.” If you weren’t old enough to watch MTV back then, here’s the video from YouTube.
Before our kids were born, I never would have watched TV at 3:00 in the afternoon. First of all, I would have been at work. And if it was the weekend, I would have been doing something more “productive.” The guilt would have been too great. But as a mom, I’ve realized breast feeding is as productive as it gets. Plus, you can’t really send emails or cook dinner while breast feeding (at least most of us can’t) so you might as well relax.
I first discovered the beauty of the DVR when I was pregnant and on bed rest for two months with The Bortski (our now 2 year old). I had resisted the notion of TIVO for months, arguing that it was a waste of money. But then, my husband went ahead and got it anyway. Once it was installed, I begrudgingly admitted that it was pretty cool.
I quickly developed a Sex And The City-Miranda-like obsession with the TIVO. Remember how upset she got when her cleaning lady accidentally deleted her favorite program? Ironically enough, during that pregnancy I watched, thanks to TIVO, every single episode of Sex and The City. I was also really into Arliss, the tale of an uptight sports agent.
Once The Bortski was born, I fell under the spell of Monk, the obsessive compulsive detective with an uncanny ability to solve crimes. And Monk-like, I realized the true benefit of the DVR– I could religiously watch the show without missing a single episode or scene. I could breast feed while watching 20 minutes of the program. Stop. Change a diaper. Go for a walk. Do some work. And when I came back the next day, for another feeding, the show was right there, ready to pick up where I had left off.
As an aside, I have to admit that TIVO and I did have some rough days. For a while, I didn’t have the patience to figure out how to program shows. To top it off, our universal remote sometimes gave me fits. Remember, when I was a kid we had to manually change the channel; there were about 6 channels to choose from, and some stations even went to bars and tone at night. So, a note to gift-givers– please, answer your cell phone in the middle of the day when Mama calls asking you how to turn on the TV.
Now, back the the regularly scheduled program…
When we moved from Boston to New York, and I was pregnant once again with The Bear (our 8 month old), we had to live in a temporary apartment. Our stuff was in storage and we were without our TIVO. Oh, did I suffer withdrawal. If I missed an episode of LOST, it was lost and gone forever. If I had to pee (which we all know was quite often) I couldn’t pause the show. I had to go fast. But if I didn’t have to pee, I actually had to watch the commercials. I kept pressing the remote, hoping I could pause or fast forward the program. The reflex was that ingrained.
Lo and behold, when we finally moved into a permanent apartment, and I was still pregnant, we suffered another TV calamity. The TIVO was broken. Somewhere along the way it had gone on strike. Fortunately, we were able to replace the TIVO with a DVR that was built into our cable box. Back in business.
Since the fall television season started, I’ve got my new list of favorites: How I Met Your Mother (my husband thinks I’m a mix of Lily and Robin); Desperate Housewives (unrealistic, but who cares); 30 Rock (love Alec Baldwin as the meddling boss); Studio 60 (hope the network holds onto this one); Six Degrees (hope the network brings it back soon) and Walking the Bible (an author’s journey to locate key places in the Bible). Boy do I watch a lot of TV! Sorry mom.
All of this brings me to another television item which is a great gift for the breast feeding mom– a premium cable channel. If you pay for HBO, you can watch some of the most creative shows on television. I’ve been hooked, at various times, on Big Love (fascinating characters), Entourage (the guys’ Sex and the City), Curb Your Enthusiasm (how can she be married to that guy?) and The Comeback (almost too painful to watch). Plus, if you get HBO, you’ll also have HBO on Demand which gives you a whole bunch of movies to watch at your leisure…. No, they are not paying me to write this.
Today, The Bear has been less than pleased with my television watching habits. I used to be able to put the TV on mute, and read the captions without distracting him from his meals. But now, when I breast feed, the flashing lights catch his attention and he pops off the boob and cranes his head to see what’s going on. I think my days with the DVR are numbered.
But even if that’s the case, the DVR is already serving another purpose. It’s the perfect babysitter at 6:00 am when The Bortski wants to watch Dora, again and again and again.
Come to think of it, where is that remote?! “Bortski?!?!?!?”

One Response to “Gifts for The Breastfeeding Mother”

I so agree about the wonders of the DVR for the breastfeeding mom. If it was not for the DVR I would rarely be able to watch the nightly news. When I was on bed rest for two long months it gave me something to do to learn how to program the DVR. Now I can watch shows while I nurse since that is the only time I get to sit down and relax. I am so glad someone else can relate.

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