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Spotlight: Blue Ridge Breastfeeding

Becoming a parent can be an over whelming experience.  I’ve done it a few times and remember full well how it feels.  I have worked for months to create a network of resources for my followers and clients.

I’d like to introduce you to one of them, Marah from Blue Ridge Breastfeeding!

 

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We did a little bit of Q&A for ya’ll to get to know her and what she does.
What do you do?

Most of my work, for now, involves in-home consultations. The beauty of an in-home lactation consultation is that you don’t have to do a thing. Just be home at the agreed-upon appointment time, which should be planned around one of your baby’s anticipated feeding times. I ask that you please do not clean, cook, or tidy up for our visit. I’m coming to help, not judge! We’ve been new, exhausted mothers ourselves, so we understand.

The initial in-home visit usually runs about 1.5 to 2 hours. This consultation includes taking an in-depth pregnancy, birth, and breastfeeding history. A comprehensive and thorough breast health and feeding assessment are the main focus of the visit. We will design a care plan to meet your individual needs and goals, and communicate the details of the visit to your and your baby’s healthcare providers as appropriate. Our visit should leave you feeling supported, empowered, and encouraged, and with a clear plan of action for addressing your breastfeeding concerns.

What IS an IBCLC?

An International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) is a healthcare professional who specializes in the clinical management of breastfeeding. An IBCLC is certified by the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE). An IBCLC works in a wide variety of settings, providing leadership, advocacy, professional development, and research in the lactation field. Candidates for the exam are required to complete up to 1,000 hours of clinical work and earn educational credits in health science courses such as anatomy and  physiology, cultural diversity, psychology and counseling, infant and child development, and nutrition, as well as complete almost 100 hours of lactation-specific education. The IBCLC certification is recognized as the highest credential for health professionals who work with breastfeeding women and babies.

What services does BRB offer to new mamas?

Blue Ridge Breastfeeding provides in-home lactation consulting, support, and education for families throughout the tri-state area. Our purpose and passion is to provide personalized, comprehensive support for all phases of lactation. We view lactation as a holistic process and respect each family’s unique health care beliefs. Our goal is to help you navigate your personal breastfeeding journey. Depending on your needs, it might simply be answering questions, clarifying something you heard, or offering some reassurance. Other times it can be much more involved. In all cases, we are here to help you, and we are honored to support you on your breastfeeding journey.

Any information on classes or workshops?

Evidence shows that mothers who are educated and supported throughout their breastfeeding experience are much more likely to achieve their breastfeeding goals. We offer several classes that will help you position yourself for breastfeeding success. Please contact us to inquire about class dates and locations.

Tell me about your kids!  How was your breastfeeding experience?

I am the mother of five children, ranging in ages from 10 to 2. I always planned on breastfeeding and assumed nursing my baby would be smooth sailing. But when I was thrown into the seas of motherhood, I struggled and almost gave up. I will always remember the sleepless night with a crying baby who wouldn’t latch when I yelled to my husband, “Just get the bottle of formula!” Thank goodness for a stubborn baby who wouldn’t take a bottle, a supportive husband, and a knowledgeable nurse at our 2 day check up. I am forever thankful to the nurse that gave me encouragement and guidance during those early days.

I’ve dealt with mastitis, clogged ducts, tongue and lip tie, sore nipples, slow weight gain, pumping during separation, night weaning, and just being touched out, but I’ve also soaked up the sweet “milk drunk” smiles, cherished the sleep inducing power, felt empowered knowing something my body makes sustains my children, and sighed sweet relief for the magic when nothing else will calm a tantrum throwing toddler. In the words of Art Williams, “I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy. I’m telling you it’s going to be worth it.”

Any tips for our new moms and moms to be?

My #1 tip for moms is know where to go for support. Have a list of people you can call when the going gets tough; have information available for the closest IBCLC, La Leche League meeting and leader particulars, and even a list of those experienced breastfeeding moms you can count on. Attending breastfeeding classes is a wonderful idea  Reading books about breastfeeding is great too! But when it comes down to it, you just can’t know everything and sometimes you need to reach out to an expert.

How can clients get a hold of you? I can be reached via phone or text at 301-744-9566 (office) or 717-658-0779 (cell). I’m also quick to respond to e-mails at marah@blueridgebreastfeeding.com. Being avaliable for our clients is extremely important to us; that’s why an in-home consult includes follow-up emails or phone calls for two weeks after the appointment.

 

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