What inspired you to become an IBCLC?
Motherhood stirred my life in a direction that only bought more warmth and deep sharing of empathy all along. It has been a dream-come-true for me.
Becoming an IBCLC has been a natural progression similar to a tree growing deeper roots. Challenging breastfeeding experience drew me closer to La Leche League International. Being a Le Leche League Leader connected me with some wonderful people and this is the best thing that happened to me besides my husband. I had the opportunity to interact on a personal level with some of the eminent personalities in the Lactation field such Rachel Myr, Diana West, Gini Baker, Diana Cassar-Uhl, Katheleen Kendall-Tackett, Nikkie Lee, Jane Kershaw, Susan Burger, and Catherine Watson Genna among others. What most struck me about these people was their humility and humanness. I find them profoundly philanthrophical in their ideas and sharing of knowledge.
What were some of the highlights during your journey?
The use of technology which connected me the outside world, from my home, while I cared for my family is perhaps the biggest highlight.
4 years ago, as a mother with breastfeeding challenges and my quest for answers, carved a pathway to becoming a counsellor and an IBCLC. The highlight remains the clarity of thought and answers I finally uncovered about the challenges of my nursing. The road to this realisation hasn’t been easy for me but it strengthens my commitment to help the mothers who are seeking help.
What challenges did you face?
The uncertainty of being a committed La Leche League Leader who enjoyed volunteering my time and knowledge, and moving into a role of a professional lactation consultant. The differential roles, these two credentials, play in supporting a mother. The clarity of thought came during the endless conversations I had on the forum of Health-e-learning with Denise Fisher.
I perceived a possible conflict of interest in holding these two roles may be my biggest challenge as a Le Leche League Leader/Lactation Consultant, however this turned out to be the least of all challenges I have faced.
There were challenges with the IBCLC exam, as it included studying and getting to know about the different cases and familiarising oneself with different breast conditions even though it is quite difficult to practically have experienced all these conditions and scenarios. The other challenge was being the lone candidate from Mumbai and I did long for a partner to study with and a mentor.
What are you most excited about now that you are an IBCLC?
My approach or level of care to the mothers I help has not changed but being an IBCLC has given me a tremendous amount of confidence in the knowledge of clinical management of breastfeeding. This will translate as assurance in mothers I help and increase their trust in my ability to provide them breastfeeding support. I also feel empowered to help influence the belief and opinions around breastfeeding among young mothers for the better and the credential of IBCLC makes it easier to be heard and trusted. This is most true amongst the medical community and health care providers that I have and will be working with than the mothers I care for.
What questions would you like to ask your IBCLC colleagues who have been practicing for a while?
I would like to learn more about scope of practice in a hospital setup and level of follow-up. I would appreciate looking at samples of reports to be shared with clients or communication samples with other health care providers. It will be a big help to know more about managing and gathering funds to attend conferences, which I believe are a great source of learning and networking. Also an insight to involve health insurance for reimbursement for lactation care for clients will be helpful.
Effath Yasmin, MA,HDSE,CLEC(USA),IBCLC, is the founder of Nourish & Nurture Lactation Care & Parenting Solutions, a pursuit to becoming an outreach center for mothers and families who are seeking professional lactation support. She found herself transitioning naturally into a profession that enriches her role of a mother of 4 year old, Zaara. Yasmin naturally saw a calling and a desire to help other mothers in their journey of motherhood. She fervently pursued to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant specialising in clinical management of breastfeeding. She works towards providing high quality of care integrating in her plan of care approaches of nutrition, lifestyle and draws outcome from referred treatment therapies such as homeopathy, craniosacral therapy, acupressure, physiotherapy, and hypnotherapy towards solving and managing breastfeeding issues. Yasmin insists in recognising & acknowledging the psychosomatic factors & the impact of birth trauma in breastfeeding issues.
Yasmin is very passionate about her role as an accredited Le Leche League Leader providing support and counselling to hundreds of mothers over the past years. She is also very enthusiastic about her affiliation with International Baby Food Action Network and applauds the work of IBFAN to promoting better standards of food for infants and young children. Yasmin supports and volunteer a significant amount of her time for the mission of Breastfeeding Promotion Network of India and Birth India for the cause of educating women of their childbirth choices and the direct impact it has on breastfeeding.