One of my fondest memories of being a lactation consultant came at the Octoberfest a few years back. We met up with some friends, one of which had an out of town visitor. Introductions were made, and this wonderful young woman (who is from California) asked me what I do. “I’m a Lactation Consultant” I replied, then waited for the inevitable response of “you’re a what?” Instead, her response was “Oh awesome! Do you milk animals or humans?”
Certainly when I was making my life plan, lactation consultant was not on the list. This is a line of work that finds you, not one that you plan on pursuing as you would a teacher or social worker. This wonderful world found me after my kids were born and I was determined to read anything and everything I could find to make mommyhood a bit easier and less of a mystery. I can credit many things to my children, but one thing I will always be thankful for is that they gave me this career.
One of the amazing things about this line of work is that I am associated with other women in the birth world who are here because they want to be here. Rochester Area Birth Network (RABN) is an ample resource of women who are birth and post partum doulas, childbirth, Bradley, prenatal fitness and yoga instructors, providers and peer support for women who are pregnant and parenting in the Rochester area. Every one of us are here because we hold a common passion for the empowerment and well being of women and their babies, evidence based care and informed decision. I’ll say it again – all of us WANT to be here. And that’s a pretty exceptional thing. In fact, many of the people I have the pleasure of working with, either birth activists or new moms, have such a passion for what they are doing and it’s hard to hide that kind of excitement and enthusiasm.
So for now, I’m pretty happy milking humans, meeting new moms and babies, and encountering extraordinary women everyday. It’s the best job that could have ever found me.