I have been so fortunate to learn at the feet of some incredible women providing breastfeeding support to the mamas around them. And so many more who, while not professionals, carried me on my journey.
My breastfeeding heritage starts with a young mother in Homestead, FL. I’ve often wished I knew her name so that, in this day and age of Facebook, I could seek her out and thank her. She taught a children’s Sunday School class with my mom and nursed her young children. Mom once told me, “I just so admired her parenting style and her wonderful nuturing personality that I determined that I wanted to be like her when I had children.” Because of her influence, mom breastfed both my sister and I and I believe that also influenced us to breastfeed the six children we have combined Quite a legacy if you ask me.
My mother is amazing.
In a day and age where breastfeeding was certainly not the cultural norm, she fed us. Extended breastfeeding with me, dealing with my sister’s milk allergy, attending La Leche League meetings, running a home, volunteering with the PTA, being our biggest cheerleader and our fiercest advocate. She fed us by teaching us to have a voice, to hold tight to our convictions, to provide hospitality. She continues to feed us by loving our children, making memories and providing the kind of home that I just can’t wait to come home to.
I had no question about whether or not I would breastfeed my children (though I had plenty of questions about whether or not it would all work as I had hoped!) The legacy laid before me provided guidance and comfort. I am incredibly thankful.