The most amazing transformation has happened to my work as a lactation consultant over the past months. It’s enhanced my practice, given me a load of new tools to use with my clients and undoubtedly improved the outcomes for every mother I have worked with.
Back in the early spring of 2017 I met up with my friend Ray for a coffee and a catch up at our favourite cafe. We always enjoy checking in with each other to catch up on our businesses and refer clients to each other, but rarely get the chance in our busy busy family and working lives. We discussed the possibility of starting some breastfeeding classes together. Ray already runs hypnobirthing classes and also works as a volunteer breastfeeding counsellor. We have volunteered together in the past and made a cracking team, supporting Mums and having a great time doing it. I was hoping that with our shared knowledge and experience we could put together a meaningful course on breastfeeding for pregnant women and their partners.
As the months went by and we started to put this course together we realised that this it was going to be something quite different. In our daily work with women the emotional side of breastfeeding and parenthood is muddled in with the breastfeeding issues. Babies feel what their mothers feel and vice versa. Negative emotions and those that may be held very deep inside the subconscious can have a huge impact on feeding. Listening and counselling skills are so important when helping breastfeeding families but what about giving families the tools to be able to change that thinking?
So Ray took her hypnobirthing practice and related it to breastfeeding and motherhood. Mindful Breastfeeding was born! I immediately changed how I was working with mothers in my clinics and in their homes and the result was staggering.
What I have found is that when I help them trace back where their anxiety, fears and overwhelm is coming from and then give them the tools to work on that, although the breastfeeding problems haven’t disappeared, they somehow feel manageable. Once parents feel that the issues aren’t so daunting they relax. This, in turn, gives them a different view on the whole situation. They find it easier to make changes but also feel less pressure to see an immediate outcome.
In most of my client feedback now I receive a comments on how much more relaxed they feel and often on how they are seeing breastfeeding in a different light. It’s wonderful to hear that they have taken control of their mindset and are feeling positive whilst they navigate their way through their breastfeeding journey.
Breastfeeding takes patience. It takes time to create and nurture a brand new parent and child relationship. It’s a relationship formed of non-verbal and hormone driven communication. I hope that the more I help parents to discover this side of parenting the happier and more fulfilling their breastfeeding experience will be.
The Breastfeeding School will be launching at the end of July 2017. To register your interest go to www.thebreastfeedingschool.com
This blog post was also published at www.kenthypnobirthing.com
Join us in our new Facebook Group: The Breastfeeding Hub https://www.facebook.com/groups/736801936492856/