“Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (August). For this month, we write about the World Breastfeeding Week 2014 – Breastfeeding: A Winning Goal for Life and share how breastfeeding can help the Philippines achieve the 8 Millennium Development Goals developed by the government and the United Nations. Participants will share their thoughts, experiences, hopes and suggestions on the topic. Please scroll down to the end of the post to see the list of carnival entries.”
I did not know then.
No one taught me.
These are the common lines that I share with many mothers who regret not being able to breastfeed successfully their children. With my first 2 children, I had no knowledge; I had no support system during my pregnancy. My family was in the States; I had no criteria of what to look for in a pediatrician. I was in the era where hospitals gave formula milk as part of your birth package. So I raised my children with the full belief, thinking I was giving them the best of me and formula milk was included. I cannot account the number of times we had to rush to the hospital because my children were so sickly. I could not pinpoint where I went wrong and just blamed my genes for having children with weak anti-bodies.
My life stage then resonated very well where I was in my spiritual journey. I was very lost. I did not know the Lord and no one taught me the right path. I thought I had a good life and I thought I did everything to make life the best but I discovered that it was impossible because I kept filling my life with counterfeit happiness. It is only when I discovered the answer to an abundant life in Jesus, that I experience blessings following you.
After a 7-year break, the Lord opens my womb and allowed me to bear a child again. In this stage, I made an assessment of my motherhood and made a commitment to do whatever it takes to be the mother, God called me out to be. So I attended a breastfeeding seminar. In that seminar, I was not fully convinced I could breastfeed and I was very disturbed by the photos they placed in the material of women breastfeeding. The photos were not appealing, the women looked worn out and almost dying. It must have been my unstable hormones but I cried on the way home. I was telling my husband that day, I might not be able to fully breastfeed because the photos showed hardship and long suffering. I was afraid to look and feel miserable just the same way the women looked in the photos. But the Lord must love me so much that he surrounded me with a group of ladies who were breastfeeding with joy. It was their daily modeling and online support that encouraged me to take a bold step to stay committed. My husband was my cheerleader in every bold choice I made with regards to breastfeeding. He made sure that I wont make any excuses not to nurse and even went on a shopping spree to buy me nursing clothes. This empowerment built my confidence. I had to even change my OB because I was particular about my birthing plan. I wanted the Unang Yakap protocol to be executed properly and rooming-in a reality. When I had a disagreement with the hospital pediatrician for discouraging me to breastfeed because of jaundice, I fought my rights and questioned her knowledge. I was a tougher woman now simply because behind me were my breastfeeding circle of support.
The same way, I wanted to keep growing in the faith in Jesus. I made a personal choice to do my part to strengthen my relationship with the Lord. I read my Bible daily, I worshipped, prayed and fellowship with others who can make me grow stronger and I wanted to apply what I learned to myself and others who needed to hear the promise of HOPE.
In my breastfeeding journey, I realized how this circle of support impacted me and strengthened me. I decided to take this breastfeeding advocacy seriously. I chose to make a personal stand and do what I can within my capacity. I want to be there for every woman within my reach to experience the God-given power to breastfeed. I attended a peer counseling class and that’s the story of how Breastfeeding Pinay came to be. It was because a bunch of moms wanted to be part of a larger picture of being able to help moms who need the encouragement to keep going.
I also realized that it’s important for every mom to be empowered. That is why I felt the need to help breastfeeding moms celebrate their wins and fight the system by bring breastfeeding back as part of the norm and not the exception. I mentioned earlier how discouraged I was with the photos I saw in the breastfeeding seminar. So it has been a personal mission for me to come up with wonderful photos and stories of real women who breastfeed. Together with our online community, we came up with breastfeeding photo marathons and encourage women all over through photo stories and exhibits seen in different mediums and venues.
Today I am part of a movement that only God stirred from the very beginning. You see breastfeeding is Gods design. If you read the Bible, God’s answer to baby’s nourishment is to be nursed from their mother’s breast and not from another animal. What a privilege it is to be given a second chance to make a difference for my 2 latter children as they experience true nourishment and abundance. Today, I pray to be a blessing by encouraging more women to experience peace, joy and fulfillment in motherhood through breastfeeding.
Here are many thoughts and reasons why we should all advocate for mothers to breastfeed for the first 1,000 days of life #BF1st1000days
Jenny shares <a href=”http://www.chroniclesofanursingmom.com/2014/08/milk-mama-diaries-experiencing-one-asia.html#more“>experiencing the One Asia Breastfeeding Forum</a><br>
Mec insists to <a href=”http://www.mecasmom.com/2014/08/do-math-aim-high-for-breastfeeding.html“>do the Math and breastfeed!</a><br>
Ams, The Passionate Mom says <a href=”http://thepassionatemom.wordpress.com/2014/08/22/breastfeeding-for-a-better-future/“>Breastfeed for a Better Future</a><br>
Pat says <a href=”http://www.wearandnursebaby.com/2014/08/breastfeeding-save-money-save-earth.html“>breastfeeding saves money and the planet</a><br>
Cheryl, the Multi-Tasking Mama, tackles <a href=”http://themulti-tasking-mom.blogspot.com/2014/08/improving-maternal-lives-through-global.html“>maternal health as addressed by breastfeeding</a><br>
2011 CNN Hero Ibu Robin highlights <a href=”http://themulti-tasking-mom.blogspot.com/2014/08/milk-mommy-diaries-guest-writer-2011.html“>gentle births and breasfeeding, even in disaster zones</a><br>
Felyn stresses that <a href=”http://eypolapol.tumblr.com/post/95386493886/milk-mama-diaries-healthy-mommy-healthy-baby#.U_ar2cWSyud“>Healthy Moms = Healthy Babies</a><br>
Normi relates how <a href=”http://www.thismommylife.com/2014/08/breastfeeding-a-winning-goal/“>breastfeeding gave her strength and purpose</a><br>
Nats thanks <a href=”http://mymommykuwentos.blogspot.com/2014/08/thank-you-dr-jack-for-showing-how.html“>Dr. Jack Newman for showing how breastfeeding can be a win-win situation</a><br>
Em believes <a href=”http://www.touringkitty.com/2014/08/22/breastfeeding-a-solution-to-societal-problems/“>breastfeeding is a solution to societal problems</a><br>
Marge shares <a href=”http://nanaylovespurple.tumblr.com/post/95363750724/teacher-mom-breastfed-baby“>what breastfeeding has taught them</a><br>
Kaity was <a href=”http://snapplaylove.blogspot.com/2014/08/breastfeeding-winning-goal-for-life-on.html“>empowered financially and as a woman through breastfeeding</a><br>
Madel relates her <a href=”http://www.mommymeowmeow.com/2014/08/milk-mama-diaries-our-breastfeeding-saga.html“>breastfeeding saga</a><br>
Jen of Next9 reminds us <a href=”http://attachedatthehip.me/milk-mama-diaries/“>to do our research and share what we know</a><br>
Celerhina Aubrey vows to work on <a href=”http://www.celerhinaaubrey.com/2014/08/breastfeeding-winning-goal-for-life.html“>one mother at a time</a><br>
Grace wants to put an end to <a href=”http://www.facebook.com/notes/gayo-gayoso/putting-an-end-to-the-usual-stories-of-toasted-coffee-over-breast-milk/10154523250885254“>stories of toasted coffee and similar stuff over breast milk</a><br>
Diane shares how she prevailed <a href=”http://starsrainbows.wordpress.com/2014/08/21/breastfeeding-a-winning-goal-for-life“>when things did not go according to plan</a><br>
Hazel appreciates <a href=”http://sahmommywannabe.blogspot.com/2014/08/my-milk-mama-diary-yes-we-all-can.html“>mommy support groups</a><br>
Roan combines two passions, <a href=”http://homeworksbyroan.wordpress.com/2014/08/22/breastfeeding-and-architecture/“>breastfeeding and architecture</a><br>
Queenie tackled <a href=”http://www.lifeofque.com/just-for-moms/breastfeeding/breastfeeding-the-best-choice-for-mom-baby-the-environment/“>breastfeeding as the best choice for the environment as well</a> and <a href=”http://www.lifeofque.com/just-for-moms/breastfeeding/breastfeeding-myths-related-to-poverty/“>breastfeeding myths and poverty</a><br>
Rosa shares <a href=”http://thecareerhousewife.blogspot.com/2014/08/milk-mama-diaries-breastfeeding-and.html“>how the picture she thought of was realized</a><br>
Sally believes <a href=”http://thebinondomommy.blogspot.com/2014/08/breastfeeding-winning-goal-for-life.html“>breastfeeding benefits mankind and our planet Earth</a><br>
Floraine reminds us that <a href=”http://myhappybeginnings.blogspot.com/2014/08/breastfeeding-winning-goal-for-life.html“>breastfeeding helps combat diseases</a><br>
Crislyn was happy to realize that <a href=”http://www.acelynprojecthappiness.com/breastfeeding/milk-mama-diaries-benefits-of-breastfeeding-financially-emotionally-physically-and-environmentally.html“>she improved her own health by breastfeeding</a><br>
Armi reminds us how <a href=”http://www.mayumiandme.com/milk-mama-diaries-carnival-august/“>breastfeeding during emergencies is crucial</a><br>
Arvi tells us how <a href=”http://thehappymrst.blogspot.com/2014/08/how-breastfeeding-helped-us-jumpstart.html“>breastfeeding made her look at her body a different way</a><br>
Clarice elaborates on how <a href=”http://tickledmomclarice.com/2014/08/22/breastfeeding-saving-babies-and-mother-earth/“>breastfeeding saves lives and the planet</a><br>
Giane reminds us that <a href=”http://www.facebook.com/notes/giane-cortazar/its-more-than-just-the-boobs/10152599848099043“>women empowerment can begin by seeing breastfeeding as more than a feeding issue</a><br>
Liza thought she was only <a href=”http://mommylovesyouforever.wordpress.com/2014/08/22/breastfeeding-i-thought-i-did-it-just-for-him/“>breastfeeding for her child</a><br>