Tales from sea

With Remembrance Day fast approaching, I'm reminded of those in the military service who are away from their families. I served in the Coast Guard for 15 years. As a paramilitary member, we could be called into service for Canada if needed.

When my eldest was 18 months old, my husband decided that he would try being the stay-at-home parent for a while while I returned to my full-time job at sea as a navigation officer.  I had been breastfeeding until I went away to sea, and I had been to La Leche League meetings in St John's, Newfoundland once when I was expecting. Upon my return from a one-month posting, my big 19-month old crawled into my lap, snuggled in and breastfed. After a few days, I asked him if he was actually getting milk. I'll never forget the milkiest, toothiest smile that he gave me. He continued to breastfeed around my month-on, month-off schedule until he was almost 3 years old. I assumed the same would apply with my second son, moreso since I was only at sea for 2-week shifts. I was deeply saddened and I still carry guilt when my second stopped breastfeeding entirely at 13 months.

I'm thinking of these experiences as I think of parents who are away for their families right now. I remember. Never forget.

 

With many thanks to Wendy Jolliffe (LLLC Leader) for her contribution to our country, the organization and for writing this blog.


 

To encourage, promote and provide breastfeeding, chest feeding and human milk feeding support and educational opportunities as an important contribution to the health of children, families and society