This week’s CHAMPion is Ms. Alaura Rhea, a mother of two and employee of Franklin Corporation in East Mississippi. Alaura was nominated by her WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counselor, for her determination to overcome breastfeeding difficulties and to manage pumping while at work.
“When I had my first daughter at 17, I did not look into the benefits of breastfeeding. But when I had my son last November, I knew breastfeeding was what I wanted to do. I had many people tell me that I would not be able to breastfeed, but with COVID going around, you want to be able to give your baby the best protection and that’s breast milk!”- Alaura Rhea
Even though Alaura’s breastfeeding journey has been far from easy, she describes it as one of the best experiences of her life. Alaura shared the beauty of the bonding experienced through breastfeeding, the benefits for her health, and the hardships she faced when her baby was born, including her challenges with breastfeeding in public. “I started thinking that I wanted to give up because my nipples were so sore, but my lactation consultant showed me various positions to help with an easier latch, “ Alaura said. “The benefits of the breastfeeding is one of the reasons that I don’t give up, but also to prove that you could be a working mom of multiple kids and still make it work. Not only am I nourishing my kid from my body but I also get the satisfaction of knowing that I am doing it no matter what anybody says. I feel much closer to my child than the last time and the postpartum depression is not as bad.”
Furthermore, Alaura has established a routine of pumping at work despite her tight schedule and initial difficulties. “I get really busy at work, so it is really hard to pump and I end up taking three breaks to pump. It was hard at first but it’s been smooth sailing once I got the hang of it.”
Alaura also shared some words of encouragement for other breastfeeding moms. “When you feel like you want to give up, don’t. The first two weeks would be the hardest but keep going. It gets better. Breastfeeding has been the best experience of my life, it’s hard but worth it. And don’t be ashamed to breastfeed in front of anyone.”
Congratulations Alaura, we applaud your commitment and wish you the best with the rest of your breastfeeding journey!
CHEER Champion of the week
Each Monday (besides public holidays), we will recognize a CHEER Champion for all the support they have provided for CHEER, CHAMPS, or the general public.