Friday, April 15, 2011

Goin' to Boob School.

On the board in one of our classrooms. Like it says: Boob.

In the midst of all the birthday craziness, and crossing the line from *sniff* toddler to preschooler, I also started Boob School this week! Officially, I'm part of the first degree program for lactation at Birthingway College of Midwifery, in case you missed the memo, which qualifies us to sit for the IBCLC exam. Our first day was great, a 4 hour orientation and then 4 hours of Anatomy & Physiology (which I could have transferred, but I really want the information anew). Today, sleep-deprived and homework in hand, I'm off to Breastfeeding I.

Things I theoretically want to focus on over the course of the next two years:
  • Tongue tie (obviously), based on the intensity of my own experience.
  • Low supply, both perception and reality. The fear/belief that she isn't making enough milk is one of the biggest reasons moms give up nursing, and it largely isn't true - often a growth spurt combined with a care provider not well-versed in advising moms on breastfeeding is the killer combination. And the flip side of that is that there ARE true supply issues, and I want to know everything there is to know about them.
  • Herbal galactagogues in depth. Over and over, I see the question "How do I increase my supply?" And a chorus of totally well-meaning people say, "Fenugreek!" It's just so much more complex than that, and I'm looking forward to learning all about exactly how it all functions.
  • The role of maternal nutrition, particularly with regard to food sensitivities and intolerances, something I haven't written about here yet. Or have I? No, if I have it's only been in passing. I think.
  • Women with long term challenges (again, obviously), especially in terms of using breastfeeding tools like the Lact-Aid, and with special attention to how to transition OFF the tools.
I also have an idea for a study, perhaps an independent one, that I would loooooove to do in tandem with someone, potentially a medical student or someone going for a masters, say, in public health. Possibly more people than that. If that sounds like you, buzz me! Anyway, it could possibly be a thesis, and something valuable for the field as a whole.

Whew! Is that an agenda or what? I realize things may and probably will change over the course of time - just like I thought I was going to do practically nothing but sports massage while I was in school for massage therapy, yet the work I was drawn to once I was in practice was quite different. But still, it's helpful to have some direction at first.


  1. You go girl!!! This is just the beginning.....

  2. Ooo lucky girl you. It already sounds like so much fun! I still have a year or 2 (depending how slow I am at PCC) until I can make my way into Birthingway. Sad day, but I will make it there!

    And like Carol said, it's just the beginning.

  3. Where is Birthingway ?? I gather you are going for pathway2 in 2012? I hope so. You would be so good!

  4. It's in the one and only Portland, Oregon! And I think the timeline has us qualifying to test in 2013, as it's a 2 year program. (I think.) And thank you so much, I sure hope so.

  5. Hey, let me know about your study idea:) hilseb at gmail dot com