August is National Breastfeeding Awareness month and I was invited by Modern Milk to provide Breastfeeding Mini Sessions for moms and their babies. At their Happy Mom School, I talk about documenting your breastfeeding journey. It’s something that I didn’t do with my son and something I regretted. The only photo I have of him breastfeeding is a selfie I took at 8 months old and it happened to be the last time he latched. I made a more diligent effort with my daughter, but with the exception of what was documented in my Fresh 48 session by the ever incredible Inloveness Photography, I only had selfies. So when asked to provide these, I eagerly jumped on the chance.
For many, breastfeeding comes naturally. But for many others, it is a struggle and requires perseverance to succeed. Between finding the right latch, figuring out the balance of feeding and pumping, and making it through cluster feeding, breastfeeding is a full time job. I don’t think I ate a hot meal for months or if I did, it was with my boob out at the table because my daughter somehow *always* knew when I was going to have a meal and wanted one too. It can be tiring and wearing.
Let me say that having the opportunity to meet these incredible women and photograph these very intimate sessions filled my heart and soul. I heard stories about working with lactation consultants to help their baby latch; babies who would never take a bottle; babies who had lip and tongue ties; moms adjusting diets and giving up foods because the baby has allergies; moms who are finally getting into a groove; moms who are coming to the end of their breastfeeding journey. To be trusted to document these moms’ stories of connection was humbling and amazing all entwined together. I loved their tiny hands reaching for their mother, their curious glances at me, and most of all the love pouring out of each and every mother at their baby.