Hi, I am Ashley!
As a Breastfeeding Peer Counselor, I am honored to support moms during a very special time of their lives! I am intrigued with breastfeeding and have experience breastfeeding both of my children. My son and I exclusively breastfed for 15 months, until I was about four months pregnant with my daughter. I experienced doubting my milk supply, plugged ducts, and mastitis. We breastfed on-demand while together, and I pumped to provide breastmilk while I was away at college. My daughter and I exclusively breastfed for two and a half years. Again, I experienced plugged ducts and recurrent mastitis.
Both of my babies were born with jaundice, so we had to use a Supplemental Nursing System for the first few days to help lower their bilirubin levels. Once my mature milk was in breastfeeding got much easier.
With my experiences, the first few days before my mature milk supply came in were the most difficult! My determination to breastfeed, combined with the support I received from my sister and Lactation Consultant, kept me breastfeeding successfully! It got easier with persistence and time!
In college, I studied Human Services & Sociology. Some of the research I did was on breastfeeding initiation and duration rates. With my studies, I found that the more breastfeeding education a mom has and the more support she has throughout her breastfeeding journey, the more likely she is to breastfeed longer!
Even though my children are out of the breastfeeding stage, I still cherish the bond it helped create! Nowadays, we enjoy bonding in many ways outdoors; camping, fishing, hunting, kayaking, and gardening are a few of our favorites!
My greatest advice to moms planning to breastfeed:
- Learn as much as you can about breastfeeding while pregnant, especially how breastmilk supply works!!
- Share the info you've learned with your support person!
- Be confident in your body's ability to provide for your baby!
- Never give up on the most challenging day -- instead, reach out for support!
My role as a Breastfeeding Peer Counselor is to help others reach their breastfeeding goals! If you need support with anything breastfeeding-related or have questions, I am genuinely happy to help!