Breastfeeding

The Invisible Breastfeeding Community, Mama You are Not Alone

Breastfeeding moms you’ll want to read this one.

When it comes to being mothers of young children, we need to stand in solidarity and offer our support, and put our own personal agendas and prejudices aside and offer non-judgemental support.

Each of us makes decisions daily that someone else may not agree with. But we are being good mothers who sacrifice, love endlessly, and fight for our baby cubs.

**Disclaimer: Please read this blog post and reply with kindness. Hurtful comments will be banned. This mother (and other moms who I know in my community as well as nationwide) have received more than enough judgement and negativity and do not need to receive anymore through my art work. This image is being shared FOR those mothers, who feel alone, who feel like they should have to hide, for those who have no one to stand up on their behalf and say "yes, you are a great mother, and this bond you have is beautiful, selfless, kind, proper and sacred” so I will stand up for them.

Below you can read the mom's thoughts on extended Breastfeeding and how she feels about publicly talking about it, it was her side of the conversation as we discussed whether or not to share this image online. The following written message was shared onto this blog with the approval from the mom who wrote it:

 

“I am conflicted. On one hand, I don't want to share a picture in a way that my family would see it. They thought breastfeeding beyond a year was self-indulgent, even bordering on obscene. Some of my family unfollowed me on FB when I posted sweet nursing pictures during breastfeeding week when my daughter was 2. I do not want to deal with their criticism again. There are some fights you just can't win.

On the other hand, there is nothing wrong with a 5 or 6 year old who still wants to nurse. Many 5 and 6 year olds nurse, but no one talks about it. And no one will talk about it if no one starts talking about it. BUT, I don't know if I want that conversation to start with me.

After about age 3 or 4, nursing is not demanding like it is with an infant or a toddler. It's not as much about nutrition, as it is about soothing comfort, intimacy with your little one, and habit. By the time your child reaches age 3 or 4, it's very different. You don't need as much outside physical and emotional support. Your child can understand waiting to nurse if you want to be discreet. Nursing my daughter has been easy these last couple years.

I guess if you have a way to share a picture that won't show up on my FB wall, then go for it. I'm sure there are mothers who will benefit. I'm sure there are mothers whose children would like to continue nursing but are cut short because the mother thinks she is supposed to wean by a certain age. I admit I thought it was weird too, until I saw a couple of my La Leche League co-leaders allowing their children to self-wean. Seeing them opened up my eyes, for sure. Children WILL wean on their own. Many awesome kids (like mine) still nurse and you'd never guess it. In the end, it's nobody's business - it's between the mother and her child. Each woman should have the freedom and the courage to follow her own breastfeeding path.

I don't know if I've shared any words of wisdom... What I have learned is that mothering is the hardest job: it takes great courage for a mother to stand up for her beliefs and stand up for what feels right for her and her child. But every time she does it, she works her mothering muscles and she gets stronger. And in the end she becomes a warrior."

-Christine, nursing her daughter (age 6)

Birth of a first granddaughter | First time parents & first time grandmas

One of the parts of my job as a birth photographer that really brings me a lot of happiness and fulfillment is working with parents who I feel connected to, who I feel are like old time friends or family, from the first time I meet them. Vianey and Stefen are the epitome of this! I think I mentioned to them several times during our first meeting, their pregnancy and after the birth of their incredible little girl Penny, that I wish we were neighbors or lived 5 minutes away. 

We have so much in common and chatting feels effortless.

I had no idea how much love I'd have in my heart the day I joined them in their delivery room. Already there was a lot of love and a lot of family present during Vianey's labor, supporting her utterly and flawlessly.

There were a few things that kind of swept me off my feet. 

One... their birth plan changed, a few times. And each time, these first time parents met these changes with positivity, bravery and resilience.

Vianey's husband stood by her during her entire labor as the most vigilant and empathetic partner I have yet seen. 

Her family had this unspoken reverence for the young couple. An unspoken truth everyone knew about, that they went into this labor knowledgable, wise, prepared and they don't need guidance, advice, critique, rather they deserve the utmost kindness and support. Watching so many family members and also friends provide this incredible labor, birth and baby encouragement and support, even with Vianey breastfeeding the baby immediately following birth, well it was refreshing and inspiring and most of all, incredibly calming to me.

Some of these images happen to be some of my all time favorite pieces of work I have ever documented. I am thrilled that this 2017 family is now part of my birth families, that their journey has been one I have had the honor of capturing...

I love that this family fell deeply into the strong bond of trusting me to document the day their first born daughter came into this world... this is an honor that is not bestowed onto everyone and I will value their trust in me forever. 

PS. I absolutely love the twist ending with the fun proposal you'll see in the last few shots. I hope you enjoy these photographic pictures as much as I did!

Mommy & me in a Strawberry Patch | Saying Goodbye (for now)

The first time I met Brooklyn, she was already the fierce little girl she is now, just tinier.

I remember Brooklyn's mom and I met through a shared passion of breastfeeding. We both believed that breastfeeding is an amazing bond to have with our children (along with the plentitude of health benefits) and I can't believe that I had to go back three years and three hard drives to our first session together when B was a just this tiny peanut, nursing on the beach at sunrise...

This year, the family journeys out west to their new home and this session was blissful and also bittersweet as I said goodbye to one of my favorite families I've kept near and dear to my heart over the last three years.

Three mommy and me sessions and a family shoot together, I wanted to include some of my favorite shots from the last two years (find them below our session this spring 2017)

I have faith that our paths will cross again one day. It's just meant to be. Maybe one day I will venture out west to California, Arizona, Nevada, and we will have a western adventure together.

I send you my love, and lots of good blessings for your journey my dear friends. 

I hope you enjoy these photographic pictures as much as I did!

September 2014

March 2015

March 2016

SUGAR SAND PARK FAMILY PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY SESSION - THE PRETTIEST FOREST IN BOCA RATON!

My Limited Edition Sessions are finally here!

Saturday November 12th 5:00pm

Sunday November 13th 5:00pm and 5:30pm

Sessions are $250 and include 5 digital images. An additional 5 images are $99. Other additional products available for purchase

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Delray Beach Family Documentary Photographer | Weekday Morning Family Snuggles

OH I just cannot tell you how I live for moments like these.

As a documentary photographer, I see most of my documentation through during women's labors and births of their babies. 

So when a family contacts me because they want a documentary session inside their home, my heart just skips a beat. And then it flutters. And then it glows. 

This is where my whole heart and passion pours into my work. 

I hope you enjoy this session as much as I did :)

Delray Beach Family Photographer | Dusk at the Beach

What a special treasure to document this family's first professional photos (and first family shoot) ever.

I love Delray Beach. 

It is quiet. It is filled with golden, toasty sunlight. 

I love that the sun was gloriously setting as we arrived at the beach.

There's something special about our south Florida beaches. You can go every night, but the sand, water, clouds and light never look quite the same.

These parents love for their little girl shines brighter than anything.  

Deerfield Beach Broward Birth Photographer & Videographer | Morning Home Birth

My mama client called me first thing Monday morning that her labor was pretty intense and her waves were close... I was on my way within minutes and arrived just to capture the most beautiful, inspiring, serene precipitous labor and dad catching his daughter in their home. Their wonderful midwife Gelena Hinkley arrived just as I did and everything fell into perfect place as their goddess mama welcomed the beautiful pattern of transition following welcoming her baby girl onto her bosom. Below are some of my most favorite images from their birth. I hope you enjoy them and find inspiration and empowerment in them, as much as I did! 

Fresh 48 Session at Boca Raton Regional Hospital | Boca Raton family photographer

The D'Amore family wanted to bring their boys to meet their baby sister Daniella in the Boca Regional hospital on the same day she was born. What a joy to see their giggly faces and how their parents faces lit up watching them. 

You can see photos from Daniella's birth in the car outside of Boca Regional hospital earlier that morning below:

Meeting their baby sister

 

 

Taking their baby sister home

Breastfeeding is Special - Boca Raton Breastfeeding Photographer

Everything changed about my photography when I gave birth to my first daughter. I realized the love I have for her is unparalleled in this world! Becoming a mother is so life changing. Motherhood brings with it so many challenges, but the beauty and love that comes pouring into our lives is truly something no one can ever see coming. It just floods our hearts suddenly one day and we are never the same after that moment. It is an honor to be a woman and a mother! Breastfeeding is such a special relationship we get the privilege of sharing with our little ones. It is not always easy, but it is always from the heart. I love each and every single one of my breastfeeding sessions. 

 


Paulina Splechta Birth and Breastfeeding Photographer, Boca Raton, FL