North Carolina became my home in 2006 when I moved here to be close to family, having lived most of my life in a small town in beautiful western Kentucky.
My two children were both born in Kentucky in the 1980's, a time when there was no breastfeeding support in the hospital. With the help of the wonderful women at the local La Leche League chapter, I breastfed my daughter for 15 months. Five years later my son was born, and I successfully nursed him too.
At that time I had no idea how beneficial breastfeeding was for both my babies' health and mine. Now that I am both a RN and an IBCLC, I do understand the many benefits. I am so thankful that I was able to give the gift of breastmilk to my children.
I began my career as a RN in the NICU, where I often cared for babies with serious complications of prematurity that we were unable to prevent or treat successfully. Fortunately, things have changed a great deal since those days. Advances in neonatal medicine along with increased understanding about the critical importance of colostrum and mother's milk has transformed the NICU to a place where tiny babies can thrive.
A few years ago I became a grandmother. LIke many new moms, my daughter had some breastfeeding challenges with her first baby. I was so impressed with the help she received from a lactation consultant that I decided to become a consultant myself!
I have been practicing as a Lactation Consultant since 2008, and it has become a real calling for me. The benefts of breastfeeding for both babies and their mothers can last a lifetime, and breastfeeding is now recognized as a national health issue.
Infant Massage Instruction is a wonderful complement to my practice. The research on infant massage is compelling. Babies benefit physically, emotionally, intellectually and in many other ways from regular massage. Parents say they find new ways to communicate with their children and share their love. I find it difficult to determine who benefits the most, the babies or their parents!