Francie Webb is author of Go Milk Yourself. She attended the Brooklyn NYC DTI doula training in May 2017. Francie came to DTI with the idea to tell us more about her “book baby”, and we’re so happy to promote this phenomenal project. We think it will be transformative for the DTI community.
Before I was a birth worker, I was a teacher. A middle school teacher, in fact, for 14 years. I fell in love with teaching on the first day of my training at a summer school in the Bronx. I thought, “I’ll be doing this when I’m 90.”
Little did I know that giving birth to my kids would change the trajectory of my life.
When I was pregnant with my first baby, I must have asked more boob-related questions than anyone else in our hospital’s newborn care class, because the lactation consultant who taught the class pulled me aside and said, “Don’t take this hospital’s breastfeeding class. They’ll tell you there’s only one way to breastfeed, that you need a special pillow, that you have to do it ‘right.’ Instead, go to the Prenatal Yoga Center and take Andrea Syms-Brown’s breastfeeding class. She’s the best.”
And so I did. On a Sunday afternoon I showed up with a group of other parents with burgeoning boobs and bellies, humans growing humans. We practiced drinking water with our chins to our chest (not possible!), angling our bodies to accommodate a hypothetical baby, and making a “sandwich” with our areolas, a term that wasn’t even in my daily discourse up until that point. I also asked my questions, including one that would also change my life: “Do I really have to pump?
My newest baby, Go Milk Yourself: You Have Power. Express It! is the story of how I discovered my own power to express my milk with my own two hands. It’s part memoir, sharing the stories of my greatest life challenges and victories. You’ll read about my astonishing second birth, made famous by our viral birth photo. You’ll dig in to the story of my healing from the traumatic death of a baby I was babysitting when I was a teenager. It’s part self-help, a lesson in discovering your own power and deciding how to express it into the world. And it’s part manual, with a comprehensive guide to my Go Milk Yourself Method, a menu of options for massage and compression that can help any lactating parent get milk out effectively and comfortably, wherever you are, whenever you want.
Hand expression is one of three options for getting milk out (baby, pump, hands), and the one we hear about the least. It can be done instead of pumping, or in conjunction with pumping. In the past two years, my team of trained teachers at TheMilkinMama and I have taught hundreds of people across the world to hand express, arming each of them with an option that can increase their freedom and decrease their stress. We teach online and in-person, in groups and for individuals. I also offer instruction for professionals who support lactating parents.
I do this, and I’ve birthed this new book baby, because Go Milk Yourself has changed my life, and I know it can change yours, too, if you are a lactating or expectant parent, or anyone who supports them. When we open up to the possibilities that actually live within our bodies, it’s amazing what can shift.
Although I’m not a middle school teacher anymore, my life’s purpose is the same: as a DTI doula, an author, and TheMilkinMama, I teach people to discover their own power, and I empower them to decide what to do with it.
I’m getting all vulnerabrave when I say to you: I’d love for you to bring my new baby home, to hold her and get to know her. I birthed my book because you, like me, might have begun to tune in to your own power, and you could use some support fully realizing it, and becoming even more your self.
Interested in hosting a book reading or event? I’m currently working on a book tour for early 2018. You can fill out the form to become a host here.
Check out @themilkinmama on social media for daily inspiration and opportunities to learn.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Are you in NYC and interested in becoming a DTI doula just like Francie? We have three NYC DTI doula trainings happening in 2018!
Francie Webb is a mom of two who lives in Harlem, NYC. As founder and CEO of TheMilkinMama, she is dedicated to helping parents have more power, more freedom, and less stress. Francie loved (almost) every minute of the fourteen years she spent teaching middle school, yet she discovered a new calling as a DTI doula and lactation professional after her two transformative births. Francie loves yoga, meditation, reading, writing, traveling, being outdoors, riding her bike, her large extended family, spending time with friends, date nights with her husband, and food.
A native of Virginia who somehow still says “you guys”* instead of “y’all,” Francie graduated from Duke University and earned Masters Degrees from Pace University and Bank Street College of Education. She is currently studying to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). Among other aspirations, she hopes to become a midwife one day.
* not gender-neutral, I know! I’m working on it!