Line of vision

Today I was reminded about a principal I follow when working with a new mom. Follow her line of vision. This might be a really lofty sounding philosophy, but it is actually just a practical approach to simplifying the life of a mama feeding her newborn baby (or babies!).

So if you are a support person in some one's life, and you are looking for ways to serve her, here is a tip: Sit where she sits, and look where she will be looking. (Feedings will happen about 8-12 times each day, for a sum total of about 5-8 hrs a day. Really.) Whatever she is looking at will eventually start to annoy her in a very new way. Look for clutter, crooked pictures on the wall, pet toys (or worse). Now make that small space as organized, clean, neat, and nurturing as possible.

You don't have to clean the whole house to make a difference for a new mother. Just take on the 10-15 feet around her nursing or feeding station and conquer that area. It will mean that she is now in a peaceful place, hopefully with some of her needs met.

Organizing a nursing/feeding basket and having someone else stock it daily is also a huge help (moms who are bottle feeding need a basket too!). You can include mom's water bottle, burp cloths, breast pads, phone, paper and pencil,  and healthy snack items. (Leave the tasty treats to another location; moms will usually go looking for those items!) I recommend carrot or  jicama sticks, almonds, trail mix, baby tomatoes, or raw peeled yams (all favorites of clients of mine).

It is only a few months when the feeding takes this much time and then it will be quicker and more flexible. In the meantime, nurture that mama by taking on her environment and making it serve her. You will get a less grouchy mama who enjoys feeding her baby more, and feels less overwhelmed with her new responsibilities.