ABOUT ME

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Hello! My name is Sara, and I am an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). I am also a Registered Nurse (RN), specializing in Maternity, Newborn, and Neonatal Intensive Care Nursing. My passion for helping families with breastfeeding began shortly after the birth of my first child in 2012- my daughter, Adalynn. At the time I did not have much knowledge of breastfeeding, nor did I have a very good support system. I struggled with knowing what was normal, and what was not. I felt scared and alone and unsupported. I did not know where to go for help with the challenges I was faced with. Luckily, a friend of mine directed me to a couple of local nursing moms groups. I quickly found the support that I needed, and I. Was. Hooked. 

In the spring of 2013 I completed coursework to become a Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC). Shortly there after I obtained my current RN position, working with moms, babies, and families postpartum. In December of 2014 I had my second child, Elijah. As a CLC and RN who worked with breastfeeding families frequently, I felt very well prepared to breastfeed this time. Little did I know, I was in for quite a struggle. Luckily, another mom heard of my difficulties, and suggested that I meet with an IBCLC in private practice. This is when I first learned that Lactation Consultants could practice independently within the community. To say that my feeding journey with my son was difficult is an understatement.... but with the help of my IBCLC and a now strong support network, we were able to overcome all of our challenges and nurse for over three years.

The limitless knowledge of the Private Practice IBCLC, her genuine desire to help me, and the benefits from all of the advice that she provided while I was having such a difficult time, further fueled my fire to delve into the world of Lactation Consulting. I wanted to be Just. Like. Her. She was remarkable. So, while still nursing my son, I completed hundreds of hours of coursework and clinical experience, and in October of 2016 I passed the IBCLC board examination with one of the top scores of any candidate internationally.

In June of 2018 I was a NH Breastfeeding Taskforce award recipient for my work promoting, protecting, and supporting breastfeeding in NH. That same day, I was asked if I would be willing to step in for a local Private Practice IBCLC, who was moving out of state. ...OF COURSE I would! 

And so, here I am now- helping families all over Southern New Hampshire. My dream job. 

Since that time, I have been blessed with two step-children, Nathaniel and Gabriella, and I have had a third child, Charlotte. I have continued to work in the same nursing position that I held before, and I have also done some work with the lactation and childbirth education departments at the hospital. I have taught breastfeeding, newborn care, and sibling classes, and I have led two nursing moms groups. I am a member of the NH Breastfeeding Taskforce, the NH Association for Infant Mental Health, the Holistic Moms Network, the United States Lactation Consultant Association, and the International Lactation Consultant Association. I am active in a local natural parenting group, and in numerous online breastfeeding/pumping/infant feeding support groups. I have received advanced training in the areas of infant development, infant feeding techniques, infant oral assessments, tongue tie assessments, trauma informed care, birth story listening, and crisis intervention. I have completed advanced interdisciplinary coursework and hands on education from Lactation Consultants, Speech Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, an Orofacial Myologist, Physical Therapists, and Oral Surgeons. It is because of this training that I am able to provide the highly specialized, comprehensive care that I excel in. 

 

In my personal time I lead a Girl Scout troop for the town of Bedford, and I enjoy spending time with my children and family- camping, gardening, crafting, cooking, and photography. Professionally I have interests in epigenetics, the biology of breastfeeding, oral motor dysfunction, supporting family dynamics, and maternal mental health. I believe that every family has the right to make their own informed decisions about the way that they feed, raise, and nurture their children. I am an advocate for women and children's rights, and for normalizing breastfeeding in our culture. 

And I am so honored- so so honored-  to be able to offer my knowledge, my understanding, and my support, to caregivers like me.

 

We are all in this together, after all. 

Sara Ann Hiland-Alanis, RN, BSN, IBCLC, RLC

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