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Episode 1: Words Matter - Creating Your Breastfeeding Experience

February 8, 2020

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Jacqueline Kincer [0:03]

I wanted to start you off with just introducing myself. If you do not know me already, my name is Jacqueline, and I am an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. That is a mouthful. So you can just use a short little acronym, which is actually kind of a long acronym because it is five letters, but it is IBCLC.

If you have ever looked into anything breastfeeding or lactation related, you have probably heard the term IBCLC. If you get the letters mixed up, no worries, people do it all the time. The other credential I have is I am a certified specialist in orofacial myology, which is basically a fancy way of saying that I am an expert in people’s oral function. That includes tongue movement, lip movement, cheek movement, swallowing, jaw movement, breathing, posture, and things of that nature. You might commonly hear of this referred to as a myofunctional therapist. I do that work as well.

As part of that work, one of the major specialties that I have had in my practice ever since I opened it is: tongue and lip ties, as well as buccal ties. Collectively, those things are called either ties or just tethered oral tissue. But I like ties because it is one word. And it is not a mouthful! For anybody who is tongue-tied, you are going to have a hard time saying all these acronyms all the time. Maybe one day, I will even share my own little tongue-tie journey with you guys. My own personal me, myself journey, which is very interesting!

Other things about me; I am a mom of two. I became a mom in 2013 with my son. I had my daughter three years later, in 2016. They are wonderful, amazing children. They are the ones who propelled and started me on this path, my son, specifically. When I gave birth to him, I was actually a stockbroker. I did not have any career aspirations to become a healthcare provider or to really be obsessed with breastfeeding in any way, shape, or form. When I was pregnant with him, I just planned on breastfeeding and figured I would, and I did, but I had so many challenges, especially in the first two months of breastfeeding him. These were not the normal breastfeeding challenges. I find that probably a lot of moms would say these things that happened to me were normal. That is going to be the topic of the next episode. Make sure you stay tuned for that one because I do not want to get into that too much here. But there is a difference between things that are common and things that are normal. Those are not the same thing. They do not mean the same thing. It is a big topic and episode number two, so make sure you are subscribed. And you listen to that episode as well.

I struggled. I also did not have a community of mom friends. I had my mom, but I did not have any sisters. I did not have any aunts or anybody to who I was close like that. I had to create my own mom group. I did not have one. I started out by just meeting people at parks and at the library. Wherever moms and babies were, I started to learn where moms and babies hung out. I learned what places it was acceptable to bring your baby and breastfeed them and what places it was not. And by the way, we will cover this in an episode for sure. But you are allowed to breastfeed pretty much wherever you want. Not every location is conducive to breastfeeding.

I really ventured out into the world and found my community. I started off with 12 or 15 moms, where we made an official moms group. Over the next few years, it had grown to a few 1,000 members, which was just crazy. I was supporting these moms. During that time, I became a La Leche League leader then I ultimately got my certification as a Lactation Educator. That sort of wet my appetite. I decided to go full bore and become a Board Certified Lactation Consultant. I spent a couple of years getting the 1,000 clinical hours that I had to get. That was really an amazing, incredible journey with a toddler in tow. I sat for my boards four weeks after my daughter was born, opened my practice a couple of months later, and I have been practicing on my own ever since. That is how I got to where I am.

I had struggles with my son breastfeeding, but I had way more struggles with my daughter. I am so grateful that I have the knowledge and support that I did with my daughter because had I not, I do not know how I could have made it through that postpartum period intact with my sanity. Let alone continue breastfeeding her. If you think that I am a Lactation Consultant, I know everything about breastfeeding, and it has just been perfect and easy for me. No, it has not been. In fact, it being hard is why I am here today. If it was easy for me, I probably just would have gone back to my career as a stockbroker, and you would not be hearing from me now. I dealt with so many things. This is just a short list:

1. Oversupply

2. Low supply

3. Tongue ties

4. Lip ties

5. Buccal ties

6. Breastfeeding pain

7. Nipple damage

8. Colicky babies

9. Reflux babies

10. Food intolerances

11. Postpartum mood issues

12. Losing the baby weight easily

13. Not losing it at all

14. Sleep deprivation

15. Mastitis

16. Plugged ducts

17. Not being able to pump

There are so many things that I have personally dealt with. I have guided so many of my actual clients through these things as well. What I am here to share with you on this podcast are three different things. They are the three parts of the tagline of the podcast. If you did not know this, the actual full title of the podcast is Breastfeeding, Talk, Milk, Motherhood, And Mindset.

The first point is milk, which should be kind of obvious. We are obviously talking about breast milk. We are going to be talking about all things boobies. If that makes you uncomfortable, then you should escort yourself out the door and hit the pause button, unsubscribe and go find yourself a podcast that does appeal to you. Because we are going to be talking about boobs, we are going to be talking about postpartum stuff, we are going to be talking about women’s bodies, we are going to be talking about babies and their poop and all kinds of fun stuff. So stick around.

I do not want the whole podcast to be about milk. I feel like, in many ways, when we talk about breastfeeding. How many times have you seen a company selling a breastfeeding product? Even a lactation consultant with practice, even the name Lactation Consultant, implies that it is just about lactating, just about the milk. Breastfeeding is so much more than milk. It is about our journey as mothers and becoming a mother.

That is where that second pillar of motherhood comes in. Breastfeeding does not just happen in a vacuum. It is not just about the milk, we cannot commoditize breastfeeding into this nutritional product, that is what formula companies do. That is great. That is what they are there for. That is what they are supposed to be doing. Breastfeeding is so much more than milk. Breastfeeding can actually be a way of mothering your baby. A lot of people do not see it that way. But when I point that out, they’re like, “Oh, yeah,” because it is about the warmth. It is about comfort. There is so much more involved in the actual physical mechanics of breastfeeding that create health for you and your baby besides all the components of the human milk, both of those factors are just equally important. I do want to clarify something because I do not want any moms who are exclusively pumping moms or low milk supply moms to feel excluded or feel judged.

First of all, there is no judgment here, no judgment whatsoever. Your journey is your journey, and you get to define what that journey looks like. That being said, I will use the term breastfeeding as an overall umbrella term. Because I do not want to get into “breast milk feeding,” all these terms, let us just understand breastfeeding means feeding human milk in some way, shape, or form. For the most part, some moms really need to pump, some moms pump by choice, whatever it is, there is no shame in your game here. I just want to make that super clear that when I use the word breastfeeding, if you are feeling like I am excluding you because you are not feeding your baby at the breast, please, please don’t feel that way. That is not what I mean at all.

That brings me to the third point, which is a mindset. Mindset is really important. Mindset determines how you interpret things and how you perceive your world. It also determines how you create and shape your world. The thoughts that you think, and the words that you speak, are constantly shaping your own reality. That includes things in your life, like your career, your relationships, and just generally how you show up in the world, even shapes your experience of breastfeeding. You might not even realize you have some negative thoughts going around in your mind about breastfeeding. You do not have to know exactly what those thoughts are. You can always change your thinking. It is anything in life, if you have been in the personal development world, or you are into reading that kind of stuff, I am sure you are familiar with the term mindset.

For me, when I am talking about mindset, it is a system in your mind. Habits, your thoughts, your interpretations of things, your perceptions, all of that. That is ultimately what creates your reality. If you are thinking that breastfeeding is impossible. How can I keep going one more day? That mindset is going to lead to a certain outcome, it is not good or bad. But if you are saying, you know what if I can just make it one more day. That is amazing. If you say, ” I can make it one more day, I can make it another day, and I can make it another day.” When you work from that mindset, there is an entirely different outcome that becomes possible for you. Your mindset is your possibilities. You get to decide what your possibilities are by deciding what mindset to have truly, anything is possible.

There are a couple of main themes that I have been sharing on my social media for a while. And if you are not following me, I am most active over on Instagram at Holistic Lactation. One of the things that I love to share at #youcanbreastfeed because anybody can breastfeed. I know there is already gonna be some pushback before we get the pushback, I want to tell you what I mean by that. You could have had a double mastectomy, but you could put your baby on your chest and you could feed them with a supplemental tube at your chest. That is called chestfeeding. You can breastfeed. There is still a way.

Maybe that is an extreme example of a low milk supply. Just because you have a low milk supply does not mean you have no milk supply. You can breastfeed with a low milk supply. You can breastfeed with just one breast, you can breastfeed with your pump, and you can breastfeed in so many ways, right? Most of the time, breastfeeding problems that you are experiencing are fixable. This is just not a message that women are told often enough. Anything in health care, for the most part, if you just have not found the right solution yet, you just have not found the right provider that knows the solution. Nearly everything is fixable. People are healing themselves of cancer, of diabetes, of all these things, unless it is a rare genetic condition, for the most part, things are fixable.

In neuroplasticity, people that have severed their spine in an accident were told they would never walk again, or they were in a coma for 10 years. They wake up, they regain their skills, they can speak, they can move, they can walk again. Those are extreme examples, but your little case of mastitis is not going to kill your breastfeeding journey. It is fixable. Your baby with a tongue tie is fixable. The worst Shark Bite latch is fixable. There are so many things we run into as obstacles, and we are just not told that these things are fixable. But they are! A low milk supply it’s fixable.

There is a small percentage of people that have insufficient glandular tissue. But for the most part, the other reasons why women are having these issues have to do with nutritional status, hormones, and a number of factors. We can fix those things. I want to make this podcast as inspiring, as encouraging, as truthful, as honest, and also a matter of fact as can be. Those are the things that I value and that I found to be most helpful for my clients. I am not going to beat you around the bush and hide information from you because I think it is going to hurt your feelings. If you do not like something, I have to say you can skip the episode or fast forward. I am not saying it to make you feel bad. I am saying it to give you the information you need to go on and take that information and succeed with it. If I withhold that information, and it is something that could help you, I am actually doing you a massive disservice.

At that point, I actually am creating harm. So I do not believe that we are fragile. I do not believe that women need the truth covered up for them just so they can feel better. I believe women are smart, I believe women can handle the truth. I believe women want the truth. I am not going to be one of those women that do not tell you the truth. I am also not going to be one of those women that tells you that I am better than you because I know more. I am not going to judge you on your journey because your journey is your journey. You are creating your journey with your mindset, with your words, with every moment of your breastfeeding journey, your pregnancy journey, and even your preconception journey, you are already creating your breastfeeding experience. The three pillars are Milk, Motherhood, and Mindset. You are going to get heavy doses of both.

I have some incredible interviewees that I am bringing on the show that I think is just going to blow your mind. And you’re going to say: “Whoa, how did I not know this?” “I wish I would have known this sooner.” That is why you should subscribe and make sure you do not miss out on any of the episodes. Make sure you share with any moms that you feel could really use this information that would help support them. I would also love for you to message me over on Instagram, send me a DM, and let me know your thoughts on any of the episodes that you have listened to. If there is something; topic-specific that you want to hear more about, maybe you are also interested in being a guest on the show, send me a message. We will send you the link to apply, and we can bring you on as an interviewee.

I have episode two, which is about how breastfeeding should not hurt. If you are triggered by that phrase and say: “What the heck, breastfeeding totally hurt me.” That episode is for you. Go take a listen. In episode number three, I have an amazing interview with postpartum fitness trainer Beverly Simpson. She is the founder of the 30 Minute method and B Simpson fitness. She is sharing some incredible things about your postpartum body and fitness and, getting your body back and into a fitness routine, losing the baby weight. We get into the nitty-gritty, and you are not going to want to miss that episode. Make sure you listen to that as well. I will see you in the next episode. Thanks so much for tuning in!

Welcome to the Breastfeeding Talk podcast! In this episode, Jacqueline reveals the framework for the podcast: milk, motherhood and mindset. Then she dives right in and explains how your words actually create you breastfeeding experience. If you’re just starting out with breastfeeding, or even if you’re several months into it, you’ll want to listen to the episode and get some insight on the mindset needed for breastfeeding success.

If you enjoy this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about it and know your biggest takeaway. Take a screenshot of you listening on your device, post it to your Instagram Stories and tag me @holisticlactation

I’ve got a special gift for all my listeners and it’s 38 powerful breastfeeding affirmations to support you on your breastfeeding journey, so go get that free audio now at https://jacquelinekincer.com/mantras

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  • Who this podcast is for and who it’s not for
  • This podcast is about 3 things: milk (as in breastmilk), motherhood, and mindset
  • I’ll break down what each of those 3 things means to me
  • The thoughts that we think, and the words that we speak, are constantly shaping our reality

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