I have been continuously breastfeeding now for over a decade! (Still breastfeeding my youngest child.) While I feel fortunate to have achieved this milestone, it has not been without challenges, frustrations, joy, and sometimes hilarity.
Before becoming a mother, I was (and still am) a pediatric occupational therapist with a doctorate focused on mothering and resilience. I felt immense pressure to do everything “right.” My daughter almost immediately humbled me in this regard, when she decided to come a month early and we faced many breastfeeding challenges (including tongue tie, milk supply, weight gain, and reflux struggles) resulting in postpartum depression and anxiety for me.
Those experiences (and subsequent more positive breastfeeding experiences) are a source of inspiration for me now when working with families.
I feel so privileged to be a small part of a family’s breastfeeding and parenting journey. I cannot think of a more productive and fulfilling way to serve others. I not only get to help babies and their parents in the present--- the fruit of that labor can also impact a baby and mother (and family and society) for a lifetime in many ways!
Supporting NICU graduates and infants with disabilities in early intervention, as a volunteer breastfeeding counselor, and in private practice, in homes, outpatient, community, and telehealth settings.
I am a proud mama to four wild things! My two girls are 10 and 8, and my two boys are 5 and 3.
My hubby is a college professor, but when we met, he was the barista at the coffee shop where I frequently studied. He still roasts and makes me coffee every day!
We have a dog, three goldfish, chickens, and apparently two stray cats that have adopted us.
Spending time with my family, reading/listening to audiobooks and podcasts and learning new things, taking care of my “plant babies,” and exercising outdoors.
Doctorate (Occupational Therapy)-Dual Research and Advanced Clinical Practice Track, with 14 years of experience supporting families in feeding and pediatric and maternal physical and mental health. My children and the families I have been privileged to serve, are my greatest teachers!
While working as an infant feeding/occupational therapist and volunteering as a breastfeeding counselor, I heard countless stories from families who wished that they could have breastfed their child with prematurity/disability, but did not feel that they had adequate support to do so. These stories inspired me to become an IBCLC.
To play a small role in supporting parents to feel confident, informed, and empowered in their breastfeeding journey.
Surround yourself with those that make you feel supported during this major life transition. Try not to dwell on unreasonable expectations, and at the same time, don’t be afraid to seek out help when you need it. You know and love your baby better than anyone else and are uniquely situated to raise your child in a way that makes sense for you and your family.