The amazing Allison Kimble-Cusano with her mother Linda Poole and her children Maille (8), Fiona (2.5) and Oliver (5.5 mo). Allison had healthy pregnancies and her first delivery with Maille was such a breeze, all natural with an easy recovery. She thought that's how all of her pregnancies would go but she had placenta previa with her second. Her doctor kept telling her that it would likely move on its own but it didn't, and she had to have a cesarean delivery. With her third she really wanted a VBAC and her doctor said she was a great candidate. He was in great postition but turned breech just a couple weeks prior to delivery so she had to plan another cesarean. Unfortunately, she went into labor before her scheduled delivery date and Oliver had to be delivered via emergency cesarean. Allison has struggled with postpartum depression after all three of her births. She was able to identify the depression with her subsequent births so that she could deal with what was happening before it affected her ability to function. Allison has struggled to breastfeed all three of her babies and keep up with demand. It wasn't until Oliver that a lactation consultant was able to diagnose her with having low glandular tissue. Allison and I talked a lot about while she occasionally got dirty looks nursing her babies in public, she has gotten just as many dirty looks from other women for mixing a bottle of formula for her babies in public. She wants women to stop vilifying each other and instead support one another, which is a lot of why she chose to participate in the project. She doesn't want to struggle with the choices she had to make or feel like a failure for the way she's had to birth or feed her children.
Linda came along for support and in the end decided to participate with her daughter and we're so glad she did! She has two daughters herself (37 & 35). She feels blessed that when she had children, she had a whole group of women to support one another. She said she loves being a grandmother because it gives her the opportunity do things over again, differently and perhaps right some of the wrongs she made with her own children.