I love that this year's World Breast Feeding Week Theme is "Women and Work." WABA is calling for concerted global action to support women to combined breastfeeding and work.
I urge you to check out this awesome infographic about how we can help support mothers in breastfeeding and reach these breastfeeding goals.
This month Clare will be 18 months old and we are still proudly breastfeeding and going strong!
We've had our fair share of breastfeeding challenges, latch issues, 4 months of using nipple shields, a few bouts of thrush, multiple lactation consultant visits, and more. Nursing while trying to teach piano students. Pumping in the car in between students. Learning to nurse in a carrier.
Sometimes when I was attached to the pump, or when I literally wanted to cry because the thrush hurt so bad, it felt hard to continue. (Thrush literally feels like shards of glass going through your nipple, and honestly sometimes it felt worse than labor pain) Or when my first ovulation cycle came back and the hormones made nursing feel awful. But we soldiered through those times, and I am SO proud that we pushed through and are on the way to our goal of 2 years - as the WHO recommends.
Here's another great blog post that I love with a breastfeeding sentiment better than I could recreate here:
Breastfeeding is hard and wonderful. But it shouldn't be hard to get support. From family, friends, professionals and from society. I could go on and on and ON and on about all of the reasons our incredibly dismal breastfeeding rate of only 10% of moms breastfeeding at one year needs to be raised. I could go on about how no woman should ever be shamed for feeding her baby in public - HOWEVER, WHENEVER and WHEREVER she wants to. About how higher breastfeeding rates could help public health, medical costs and so much more.
But before I get too far down the soap box rabbit hole, I just want to say - let's all continue to #normalizebreastfeeding - If you see a mom out feeding her baby, toddler or child, tell her she's doing an awesome job. Share your photos of those little moments. Breastfeeding matters. The more we share, the more we normalize it. Breastfeeding is beautiful and amazing and biological and NORMAL.
I am looking forward to taking some more updated - less selfie-like toddler nursing pictures - with my dear friend Elizabeth soon. After all, all of August is Breastfeeding Month.
I'm off to give my daughter her milkies.