August is National Breastfeeding Month and includes World Breastfeeding Week, from August 1-7. This month aims to inform, anchor, engage and galvanise action on breastfeeding and related issues as we celebrate and promote the topic of breastfeeding. We know that the breastfeeding journey is so different for many and it’s important to consider cultural and social impacts. That is why we asked Valley staff to share their stories with us. Physical therapist Allison Dawood shares her story:
“They say, ‘breast is best,’ but breastfeeding has been one of the most challenging experiences I have had in my life. As a new mother, you quickly come to understand in a powerful way just how helpless a newborn child is and how much they rely on you—for love, for nutrition, for safety, and we often place immense pressure on ourselves to do it all and love every step of the journey. But breastfeeding is difficult.
It seems like your child should come into the world and naturally know how to latch, that your breast milk supply should never be insufficient, and that the hours you spend feeding your baby (every two hours or even hourly some days) is time that you should forever cherish. The reality is that your baby often does not know how to latch, your nipples crack and hurt, and you will not get any rest after laboring for hours to deliver your baby into the world because you are feeding on demand. It is truly a labor of love to persist in perfecting your latch and to increase your milk supply despite significant discomfort and fatigue. Yet, it is also amazing to experience just how remarkable our bodies are. They can create milk that provides the perfect nutrition for our babies for an entire year of their lives, that can give immunity and safeguard your child from disease, and your milk is perfectly tailored to your child.
Breastfeeding is both awe-inspiring and a true exercise in selflessness, patience, and endurance. It is the first of many sacrifices you will make for your child in order to give them the best you have to offer, and it is something unique that only you can provide.”
What if I need help with pumping or breastfeeding? Or getting ready to come back to work? Or weaning my child? Valley’s Lactation Services department is here to help with all those questions and more! You do not have to have delivered your baby at Valley to use these resources, and no referral is necessary. Give Lactation Services a call today at 425.228.3440 x2526 to schedule your appointment!