While manning my booth at the Cincinnati Baby & Beyond Expo this year, I overheard the following:
“Modern Breastfeeding?! … and education. What could be modern about breastfeeding? Women have done it for all of time.”
She wasn’t making fun – I saw it as a great question. What could be unique about me or my business to deign call it modern?
For me, it’s about philosophy. So let’s back up and give you a bit of backstory not everyone knows.
When I got pregnant I was inundated with #breastisbest marketing. What I didn’t know was that it was the result of generations of women who mourned a loss of breastfeeding, taken away from them by medications used without their knowledge after birth, a lack of know-how or support by professionals, and in many ways, a movement by women who were reclaiming their own bodies for their babies.
On the flip side it was also a harsh line in the mommy wars: what about the women who didn’t want to breastfeed, or worse, what about the women who couldn’t, and the spectrum in between, lacking in support or lacking in resources to get support.
I personally felt the mommy wars were thrust upon me, as while I saw no reason to judge others choices, I knew I wanted to breastfeed. It was against the odds, not only had I not grown up seeing it, my own mother stopped breastfeeding me at three months old for reasons she had trouble identifying, and I knew no one in my immediate family who has successfully done it. (A lone aunt, who lived 5 hours away from us became a source of support an inspiration, but in prractical application I was lacking.) Further, I was in a new city, fifteen-hundred miles away from family, and we did not have enough money ourselves to pay for loads of resources, so I had to be choosy.
But I also knew that I have a special talent – I can fervently devour information starting at the source, medical journals, then moving onto popular books and articles. I can pick a topic and dive into it beyond the normal realms of other people’s patience, to a place where othesr find the information noxious. Yay me.
My desire to breastfeed not only changed my entire birth plan, to my birth location, and provider, but it also helped me through a difficult postpartum period. It fueled a desire to completely change careers, culminating in getting a Masters degree in Health & Wellness, with a specialization in Lactation (remember when I said noxious), and my IBCLC.
I decided to call this, my business, Modern Breastfeeding + Education because that’s exactly what I seek to do. Lend a modern perspective and philosophy to breastfeeding, as well as to the education of new or repeat parents. So here’s a breakdown of what makes it “modern.”
Modern Breastfeeding is pro-feeding for babies. Unapologetic about the fact that some babies need to be supplemented, some mothers do not want to pump, and some families have strong feelings about weaning.
Modern Education acknowledges that there is consistent research about the benefits of breastfeeding, lactation how-to knowledge, and birth which deserves to be passed to every family. Therefore I’m also unapologetic that breastfeeding is the biological best food for babies, and that best practices to support breastfeeding starts well before and physically at the birth itself.
Modern Breastfeeding knows that statistics cannot override or govern individual choice. While breastfeeding may be the biological norm for us as mammals – our culture doesn’t make it easy.
Modern Education says that All Moms deserve support groups, not just breastfeeding moms. We also deserve to all take classes together, regardless of our birth goals. Because we are a community, and ending mom wars starts with ending mom labels.
Modern Breastfeeding says that moms can breastfeed anywhere, and should know their rights. They deserve employer and employment support.
Modern Education says we can start passing around best care information, and avoid the common pitfalls of cultural myths.
I sincerely hope you’ll join us, in a childbirth education class, prenatal breastfeeding class, newborn care or pumping class, or visit us at an event.
Ask more questions about what makes this “modern” and I’ll share! Let’s create something new in person, in the Southwest Ohio, Greater Cincinnati, Dayton, and Northern KY areas together, as well as online!