6 years ago when I wrote my first entry as Mothers' Milk Maven I was simultaneously launching Lactation Partners. I envisioned having a creative outlet in the blog but instead channeled my creativity into my practice (all the moms and babies I visited these past 6 years), my children, running the business side of LP's, and our Facebook page (it was so much fun in the beginning to discover the FB breastfeeding world, my personal favorite was the Badass Breastfeeder, hope she's still around and prospering).
I've traveled some miles in the last 6 years. I saw the Affordable Health Care Act enter the breastfeeding world and mandate insurance cover lactation services and provide breast pumps, thank you President Obama, oh how I miss you. I met a new generation of moms who are working hard, approach the world with their unique imprimatur, and have access to an entire new world of social networking. I saw some great additions to the landscape such as Breastfeed Chicago, Bump Club and Beyond, and FB groups supporting pumping, breastfeeding, lactation consultants sharing knowledge and practical tips.
And yet, as much as things have changed, things are still the same. Moms are still vastly under supported and left to figure things out on their own. Those with economic resources can make their way (and it's not easy for them either) and those without as many resources make their way, also, but with different tools and types of community support. We still all help one another and hold each other up because it's such hard work. We all still try to do our best for our children and our best is good enough.
However, it has become increasingly perplexing as to how to fit it all in. The bombardment of the outside world has really entered the cocoon of the mother-baby dyad. The apple watch or the hand held allows anyone or anything to be in your own space at any moment. It distracts us, it adds to the noise, it pulls on us, it misleads us sometimes and it provides great comfort other times. It is a source for support and community and a source for harsh self-judgement and comparison. How do we balance this with the little creatures we've been given to care for? How do we hear our own internal voice, check in with our own internal barometer with all this outside input? If anyone figures it out, please let me know.