Seattle Breastfeeding Photographer | Anne’s Story

Breastfeeding is such a beautiful thing for many mothers but it doesn’t always look the same. Sometimes you have exclusive pumpers, SNS systems, supplementation, donated milk, or a mix of everything. It is not a one size fits all kind of thing.

Anne is a dear friend and a true warrior. We met on Human Milk 4 Human Babies (HM4HB) when she was looking for milk to supplement. At that time, I was pumping to donate to the Milk Bank but something told me to give to a local mom instead and I am so glad I did.  Here is her story:

“When I became pregnant I was set on having an all natural birth and breastfeeding my baby.  I had no idea that breastfeeding might come with so many challenges.  It was clear from the beginning that something wasn’t right with my milk supply.  A week after our daughter was born she dropped a significant amount of weight and we ended up back in the hospital due to dehydration.  In the hospital, Leonie was given IV fluids.  We supplemented with formula and were on a ridged feeding schedule.  Every nursing session and ounce was logged in a notebook.  One “expert” told me to nurse for only 5 minutes on each side, another doc recommended that I nurse for 10 minutes on each side.  Every new nurse or doctor we saw gave different recommendations.  It was a very discouraging and stressful time.  I did everything I could to increase my supply and spent the first three to four months nursing or pumping around the clock.  Despite all of my efforts, my supply never seemed to change. Early on it was clear that Leonie was not tolerating formula.  Feeling desperate, I purchased expensive donor milk from a milk bank in Colorado and also asked my sister-in-law to pump a few ounces.  My sister-in-law reached out to a friend who had extra milk in her freezer and we were able to avoid formula for a few days.  In the meantime, I joined the Facebook group, Human Milk 4 Human Babies, and did lots of research on donor milk.  I put in a request for donor milk on HM4HB and the first person to respond to my request was Lisa LeBaron!  Lisa has been pumping for Leonie since last August!  I am forever grateful to Lisa and can’t thank her enough for the gift she has given our daughter and family.

Leonie’s first birthday is just around the corner and I’m proud to say we are still nursing!  We still supplement a few feedings with Lisa milk 🙂   My breastfeeding journey has been an incredible experience, nothing like I imagined, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
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