Jessica's Breastfeeding Journey

Never have I met a family with such generosity, dedication to natural parenting, and such an individual sense of style. I consider myself lucky to know the Jabonete family. So when they asked to book not one but three sessions with me I was a little bit more than excited to document and share this wonderfully unique family.

Breastfeeding at the Beach // Ebb and Flow Photography // #jabonetemonth

This breastfeeding session was the first of a month full of sessions with them, which I fondly call #jabonetemonth :)

Jessica is dedicated to public breastfeeding awareness as well as breastmilk donation. So I asked her to share her story in her own words, which are below. Thank you, Jessica, for sharing so much of yourself and letting me honor your journey through these photographs.

Breastfeeding at the Beach // Ebb and Flow Photography // #jabonetemonth

Jessica's Breastfeeding Journey: When Mike and I found out we were pregnant I started doing a ton of research on all things baby. I immediately knew that I wanted to breastfeed. When Sullivan was born, I was so relieved that he knew exactly what to do. He latched perfectly all by himself. About a month into our breastfeeding journey, I began to pump to build up a freezer stash for when I would return to work. I was very lucky to have a very supportive job that allowed me to pump every 3 hours so I could keep on schedule. Soon after my return to work, Mike and I decided that we wanted me to be a stay at home mom. When we got everything all sorted out, I realized that my freezer stash wasn't really needed by us. Sullivan preferred breast over bottle but I was still pumping to "empty" the other side. I started looking into breastmilk donations and soon found several families in need of what I had an abundance of. I began making large donations to 3 families; a mom who just needed a little extra while she was on a new medication, another mom who was struggling with pump supply issues, and a single father who had just adopted his son. I continued helping out the families as often as I could whether it was through breastmilk donations, advice on supply, or even finding a donor that lived closer to them. Once Sullivan started to become more active, my pumping time dropped drastically. My son hardly ever has bottles anymore since we find it easier to just nurse when he's hungry, we've always nursed on demand. I still donate when I can but now in smaller amounts. Sullivan is now 11 months old, just a couple weeks away from a year old, and I have been able to donate over 8,000 ounces of breastmilk to families in need. I'm so fortunate to have such an amazing supply and I'm so proud of all of the aspects of our breastfeeding journey. I plan to continue nursing for as long as Sulley wants to continue since there are still a ton of benefits for breastfeeding even for toddlers.

Breastfeeding at the beach // Ebb and Flow Photography // #jabonetemonth
Breastfeeding at the beach / Ebb and Flow Photography / #jabonetemonth
Breastfeeding at the Beach // Ebb and Flow Photography // #jabonetemonth
Breastfeeding at the Beach // Ebb and Flow Photography // #jabonetemonth

happy and adventurous family - white city park - fort pierce family photographer

When this family rolled out of their new mini van clad in eyelet lace I swooned. I have always had a (secret) thing for eyelet lace, so I just knew I would love photographing this family.

The girls were so adventurous, climbing up everything and running everywhere. The oldest said, "take a picture of me, I'm lost in the forest." What a brave little soul, running carelessly through the dappled fading sunlight among the palm trees.

And what an inspiring, loving momma. She is so full of love you can see it pouring out of her in everything she does. From the way she explored along the water's edge with her daughters, to how she melted into her husband's arms, and especially in her immediate response to nurse her youngest after she had been bitten by a hand full of fire ants (alas, it is Florida and they seem to be everywhere). I consider myself lucky to know her and her family.

family-at-the point