Meet Teresa Arrington, Greater New Orleans Breastfeeding Awareness Coalition President

The Greater New Orleans Breastfeeding Awareness Coalition has announced its 2017 Board! Take the next couple of weeks and get to know these incredible members who are dedicated to normalizing breastfeeding and supporting New Orleans families.

 

Teresa Arrington, Clinical Quality Analyst with Ochsner Health System
GNOBAC President

I’m an Army brat from Ft. Benning, GA. Around my fifth birthday, my family and I moved to New Orleans and I have called it home ever since.

My breastfeeding experience was blessedly easy with my son, Nile, who was born in 2010. Unfortunately, he passed away unexpectedly when he was 9 months old. One thing that helped me to deal with my grief was to know that I could use his life and story to help others and breastfeeding played a part in that. I was able to become a milk donor for the Mother’s Milk Bank of Austin and knowing that his milk helped to save other lives really soothed the hurt.

I was blessed with a daughter, Evie, in 2011. I call her “the girl who saved me.” My pregnancy with her came soon after Nile’s loss and there’s no doubt in my mind that God timed things that way to help us heal. My breastfeeding experience was very rocky with her. She refused to latch well in the first two weeks after birth and I felt like such a failure because I couldn’t understand how a self proclaimed ‘breastfeeding pro’ could struggle so much with something that was so natural and easy the last time around. Thanks to lots of dedicated help from the Ochsner lactation consulting team, she and I got the hang of breastfeeding for the months that followed.

At about 7 months old, she started to refuse me completely, and though I worked with a certified lactation consultant, we were never able to overcome that hurdle. I think that having to formula feed for one of my children actually gives me great perspective. So many people in the breastfeeding community are unable to relate to the emotional roller coaster that comes along with those wanting to breastfeed and having the process simply not work for whatever reason.

My second daughter, Luna, is my karma for everything I ever did as a child!  I was very fortunate to have been able to nurse her for 13 months.

I would love to be an encouraging voice for all women who are considering breastfeeding. I also want to be here to support women with the breastfeeding related struggles that they may find difficult — the painful engorgement, the leaking, the supply shortage, the latching issues, being chained to a breast pump, the inability to get away for long periods, etc. It is my wish that we can create a community in which every mother is educated about breastfeeding, and where moms who decide to breastfeed have the support they need to be successful with it.

 

My Favorites:

Favorite Snowball: I actually don’t love snowballs, but if I had to pick a flavor, I’d say coconut. Give me some beignets instead!

Favorite Festival: The Strawberry Festival in Ponchatoula. It reminds me of childhood when my father would bring me. I love the old school carnival rides and the sweet, fruity smell in the air. My favorite dish there is beignets topped with powdered sugar and strawberry compote.

Favorite Pizza: The Pizza Man of Covington. We love their wood fired pizzas. Also, Oak Oven in Harahan – everything is fresh and farmed locally!

Favorite Hamburger: Five Guys! My husband also makes my fantasy burger — spicy beef patty with Swiss, avocado, and mustard. Yum!

Favorite Things to Do: We practically live at the zoo on weekends! We also love going to City Park’s Carousel Gardens, especially on days when it isn’t crowded. We can ride the ladybug rollercoaster over and over without having to get off! On the Northshore, we like to go to the beach at Fontainebleau Park.

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