…Contemplating the Core Elements of a Modern Breastfeeding Lifestyle
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Breastfeeding: It’s A Hot Topic

It’s World Breastfeeding Week 2010. Today, on day 4, the midway point of the 19′th annual celebration, breastfeeding was a hot topic on The View in more ways than one.

Super model Gisele Bundchen has made tongues wag by talking about the importance of breastfeeding in the first months of a child’s life. “Some people (in the US) think they don’t have to breastfeed, and I think, ‘Are you going to give chemical food to your child when they are so little?’” Bundchen says in the magazine’s September issue. In that interview she did with the UK edition of Harpers Bazaar, she called for a worldwide law requiring all mothers to breastfeed for 6 months.

Giselle had a home birth and has a diaper free baby. She is expanding beyond lingerie to become a breastfeeding role model. She ignited a furor with her comments, but they were not intended to offend, but rather to inspire other new mothers in their quest to do the very best for their babies. I admire her passion and how she models a conscious breastfeeding lifestyle.

Clearly, she has hit a nerve as evidenced by this clip from The View. What do you think?

August 4, 2010   1 Comment

How to Win by Quitting: A Model for Breastfeeding Advocacy

I was privileged to attend an amazing personal transformation workshop led by Jerry Stocking, Embracing Being,  Held in early June, this is an on-going course that he brings to New York City several times a year.

A group of us participated in an impromptu sales exercise.  We were sent out on the streets of Manhattan in the Herald Square area.  Each of us was asked to sell one copy of a book from Jerry Stocking’s catalogue of books  to a complete stranger.  Each book was to be sold for $10, which we were told was the price of re-admission to the morning session of the workshop in progress.

The Herald Square neighborhood around Madison Square Garden, Macy’s and Penn Station is usually full of pedestrians, especially on a warm Saturday morning.  People were in motion-many of them were rushing to a  destination or had time constraints needing to catch a bus or train. 

Enter our band of itinerant sales people.

To be successful, we had to break through our personal fears.  We had to confront our fears of approaching strangers, of being rejected, of not being fully conversant with the product we were asked to sell.

There are no accidents.  The book I chose, “How to Win by Quitting” was more fitting than I could have imagined at first glance.  I had chosen it thinking it would apply to giving up substances (smoking, alcohol, etc.) or resonate with folks trying to find their passions in this new global economy.  Actually, it spoke to the fundamentals of this “cold call” sales exercise.

Fear can stop us from attempting anything.  Be it sales or breastfeeding.  As the lotto motto reminds us, “You’ve got to be in it, to win it”.  By quitting my fear, I was fully able to engage in the experience and win big.

The basic secret of successful sales is that you must be able to put your attention on the recipient of the goods or services being offered.  It turned out that the objective of our morning exercise was not to merely sell a book.  It was to observe a process.

The win was not in selling the book as much as it was being fully engaged and attentive.  A personal, authentic human interaction was to be experienced.  Selling the book was just the icing on the cake.

If you are able to align yourself with the dance of communication, you experience life fully in the moment.  You can have fun and both sides reap a reward.

This is as true for breastfeeding advocacy as it is for successful sales.  Passion and playfulness need to to be the order of the day!

June 28, 2010   1 Comment

The Nipple Monologues: Part 2: Points of View

To spare nipples pain and trauma during breastfeeding, it is essential that we re-examine our view of the latch. We must keep in mind that it is Breastfeeding and not Nipplefeeding!

The human nipple is comprised of responsive, erectile tissue which carries messages to the brain. However, unlike other body parts with such traits, it does not lengthen that dramatically if there is a great latch during breastfeeding.

The nipple should never be the focus of attention. It is just the exit through which the milk fl0ws.

During breastfeeding, it should be the bottom of the breast, rather than the edge of the nipple/areola, which is actually on top of the baby’s tongue. This is described in some circles as a “sandwich” of breast tissue which needs to be deep in the babies mouth.

I am happy to report that there are thousands of breastfeeding pictures now posted on the internet. You would think that they might add some dimension to the teaching toolbox. However, there is a big difference between an artistic shot of breastfeeding such as this, by Marga Serrano,

FOOD TIME!!

and one that is instructional for a new mom with sore nipples!

Many of the photos that I found depicted babies that are clearly older, experienced breastfeeders. It would be fair to assume that sore nipples would no longer be an issue for their mothers.

Those shots that portrayed newborn babies were vague at best. Varying latches were seen from different angles; the details of each latch were unclear. Most of these breastfeeding photos were understandably focused on the baby and gave no clue as to the mother’s experience of the latch.

Unfortunately, the conventional wisdom is that the baby knows what it is doing and that an attachment of any sort is acceptable. Most people, health care workers, family members and the mothers themselves, believe if it looks like breastfeeding, then it is breastfeeding.

I beg to differ. Breastfeeding should be evaluated by how it feels and how well it works, rather than merely upon how it looks.

Please share your points of view.

June 22, 2010   1 Comment

Conscious Breastfeeding: Greening begins at Home

It is fitting that we begin this journey of contemplating the Way of Conscious Breastfeeding on Earth Day 2008. 

I am here to help you learn more about how Conscious Breastfeeding fits into modern life and can foster positive connections with your baby, family and greater community.

Breastfeeding is literally organic… the original Green Food.  The intentional nature of the Conscious Breastfeeding lifestyle lends itself to being quite eco-friendly.  

All the experts agree that we have no hope of salvaging our planet without each one of us taking incremental steps, at the very least, to stop adding to the problem of excessive waste accumulation which is polluting and destroying our beautiful earth.

We are what we eat and how we live.   Conscious Breastfeeding raises this vibration and empowers us to make decisions that honor our bodies, our babies and our world.  Thus, the greening of our world view truly begins at home.

These topics were discussed at length today on The Breastfeeding Salon Show

As Gandhi said, “You must be the change you want to see in the world”

Join in the conversation and find out how Conscious Breastfeeding can connect us all in so many meaningful ways!

April 22, 2008   No Comments