Figuring out how to breastfeed two babies simultaneously feels like trying to get two limp wet noodles to act like…I don’t know…non-wet-noodles? Let’s just say that the rules for breastfeeding one baby are pretty much out. Before the boys came I read all about how to co-feed two babies. Looked easy enough…. But, none of the books mentioned how to do the positions with two babies that lack the ability to hold up their heads. It took an EZ-2-Nurse pillow and a lot of blankets to get them into place.
There is a photo of me in the hospital with two babies nursing in the football position. I have the most naive smile on my face. That hospital bed must have been magic, because it was never that easy again.
I am not trying to depress you. But, I do think that learning to breastfeed twins was by far THE hardest and most emotionally trying time for me. Did it ever get easier? Yes. I did need help getting them in position for the first six weeks. But, once their heads were stronger I could manage it on my own.
Here are my stages of feeding:
1. Football hold on the EZ-2-Nurse pillow (that lasted a few days).
2. One baby in the football hold, the second in the traditional cradle hold. The baby in the cradle hold had its feet down the hole between my stomach and the nursing pillow. (This lasted until 6-8 weeks).
3. Double cradle hold (11 months and counting!)
Double cradle hold:
At first I had to figure out how to position the babies by myself. I would lay each baby on the couch on either side of me. Then, I would put the EZ-2-Nurse pillow in my lap. I would place each baby onto the pillow, slide their legs into the hole between the pillow and my stomach and Voila(!) - double cradle hold with elbows supported by my pillow. As time progressed, I was able to push the pillow away, and then stop using the pillow all together. My boys refuse to nurse together anymore during the day. But, at night, it is just the three of us.
(Thanks to my sister for her amazing photo of me: http://sammisofties.blogspot.com/2009_07_01_archive.html)