Christine Rodriguez, RN
Tell us about your own journey and how your experiences have changed the way you look at motherhood and parenting.
I am a mom of two-William is 9 and Corinne is 6. Although I am a nurse, I wasn’t prepared for breastfeeding! When it didn’t come naturally to my son and I, I started seeking help from the lactation community. Through it, I discovered the little clicking sound my son made while eating was a lip tie. He also had significant Food allergies and although everyone told me to stop nursing, I persisted and worked around his allergies and we nursed until he was two and a half! I was more prepared when Corinne was born and identified her tongue tie on day 2 and we were able to quick remedy it and establish breastfeeding. She also was plagued with allergies but we again persisted and nursed until 18 months when she stopped on her own.
Tell us a little about your nursing career.
I have been in community based care most of my career. My two passion are how people enter and exit this life. I have worked in hospice and volunteered and interned in lactation. I have community clinic and hospital based lactation experience in the English and Spanish communities from my time spent as an army wife in El Paso TX, volunteering and interning at the Baby Cafe.
What are the two most important lessons you've learned working with moms, babies, and families?
You know your baby, even when you don’t think you do. Sometimes we just need someone to help us put on our “glasses” so we can see what we already know. And at the end of the day, what works for you, works. It may not make sense to someone else, but if you and baby are happy and thriving, then it’s working.
If you had one bit of advice to give to a new parent, what would it be?
Do not compare your journey to anyone else’s. Easy to say, but you will truly be at peace when you make things work for YOU, and not by comparison to people on social media or in the mommy and me groups.
Self-care is a big challenge for parents. How do you maintain your own energy and outlook?
By focusing on me and baby. I practiced attachment parenting and baby wearing because it allowed me to get things done and not have to stop for a crying, hungry little one-they nursed and I cleaned. They slept on my chest while I took some time to read a book. I adapted to our new normal and realized I can’t change my baby, but I can change my routines. Living far from my support system, and alone most of the time, I learned to take help that I trusted when it was offered, woke up early to have my coffee by myself, and learned to say “no” to things that stressed me or made my life harder.
Is there anything we've missed that you'd like to share with Mama Coach clients?
Infancy and toddler hood feels like it will last forever! But as I sit in the beach right now, looking at my two children playing in the sand, I realize how fast it really went. Take the extra hug, the cluster feeding, the slow bottle, and the midnight diaper changes and file those sweet moments away in your memory. In those moments, it’s NORMAL to feel frustrated and tired. But soon, your child will be sleeping late, making their own meals and locking the bathroom doors!
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