By Jillian Johnson
Dear Sweet Angel Landon,
I am so sorry you were failed by the unethical, exclusive breastfeeding protocol of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative. Every health care professional that took care of you in the hospital was taught the same universal BFHI breastfeeding education curriculum. I now know the curriculum is outdated, unethical and is harming babies all over the world. I promise you Landon, my sweet angel, I will never stop telling your story so that no other baby will suffer and die needlessly because of a dangerous public health policy. I won’t shrink back , and will continue educating new mothers for all of the other babies who have also suffered because their families were silenced.
I still have many, many days of guilt and questions – what if I would’ve just given you a bottle of formula? But I didn’t know. I listened to everyone in the hospital who told me your non-stop crying was normal. I still struggle daily, feeling as though I failed you.
You gave me ten of the most incredibly life changing months. I’ve been humbled and challenged. My relationships have fallen apart; some have come back together. I’ve learned forgiveness, and the true meaning of “life is short.” I love hard – to a fault. But I couldn’t live with myself knowing your death was in vain.
Today your short life story will be remembered by more than just me. And soon enough every mother will know your story, and will recognize that crying non-stop after breastfeeding indicates their baby is crying out for milk. Hopefully they will supplement their babies, despite being told not to. Even if only one of the professional hospital staff had recognized the critical hunger cues of non-stop crying and helped us supplement, you would still be alive today.
We love you to the moon and back,
Mommy, Daddy and your sisters.
HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT FED IS BEST
There are many ways you can support the mission of the Fed is Best Foundation. Please consider contributing in the following ways:
- Join the Fed is Best Volunteer group to help us reach Obstetric Health Providers to advocate for counseling of new mothers on the importance of safe infant feeding.
- Make a donation to the Fed is Best Foundation. We are using funds from donations to cover the cost of our website, our social media ads, our printing and mailing costs to reach health providers and hospitals. We do not accept donations from breast- or formula-feeding companies and 100% of your donations go toward these operational costs. All the work of the Foundation is achieved via the pro bono and volunteer work of its supporters.
- Share the stories and the message of the Fed is Best Foundation through word-of-mouth, by posting on your social media page and by sending our resources to expectant moms that you know. Share the Fed is Best campaign letter with everyone you know.
- Write a letter to your health providers and hospitals about the Fed is Best Foundation. Write them about feeding complications your child may have experienced.
- Print out our letter to obstetric providers and mail them to your local obstetricians, midwives, family practitioners who provide obstetric care and hospitals.
- Write your local elected officials about what is happening to newborn babies in hospitals and ask for legal protection of newborn babies from underfeeding and of mother’s rights to honest informed consent on the risks of insufficient feeding of breastfed babies.
- Send us your stories. Share with us your successes, your struggles and every thing in between. Every story saves another child from experiencing the same and teaches another mom how to safely feed her baby. Every voice contributes to change.
- Send us messages of support. We work every single day to make infant feeding safe and supportive of every mother and child. Your messages of support keep us all going.
- Shop and Fed is Best Foundation will earn cash back! We hope to develop our online safe infant feeding classes with these funds.
- If you need support, we have a private support group – Join
We believe all babies deserve to be protected from hunger and thirst every single day of their life and we believe that education on Safe Infant Feeding should be free. If you would like to make a donation to support the Fed is Best Foundation’s mission to teach every parent Safe Infant Feeding, please consider making a one-time or recurring donation to our organization.
Thank you so much from the Founders of the Fed is Best Foundation!