Anne had a dream of helping other mothers and families with her milk - read her story, written in her own words about her journey to milk donation with her precious baby Jof:
"Hi everyone! I'm a first time Mom here in Canada. We used to live in the Philippines, and two years ago I came here to work as a foreign worker, and then after one year my husband came here and we got married and had a baby.
We were blessed to have a very precious Boy that we named Joseph Fourth or "Jof" as his nickname. Jof was a premature Baby at 36 weeks, but everything was fine when he was born; his weight, measurements and everything were normal. The doctor says he just wanted to come out early, haha!
When I gave birth my milk didn't get out right away and I struggled in the hospital because of my engorged breasts. I was stressed because of that, but I tried so hard to pump and pump to release it so I could harvest the colostrum and the milk, so I can feed it to my Baby.
Wayback a year when I saw one of my friends in the Philippines, she posted that she's donating her excess milk because she has a lot. That was during pandemic period and I was amazed because she helped a lot of babies and Mothers who need milk, because we all know formula is expensive as well. So I told myself if one day I will become a Mother too, and have lots of milk as well, I will be like her too: helping others in this way. And also with all the blessings that I'm receiving from this country (Canada), this is one of the ways of paying back for everything: helping people here 😊
So after we got discharged from the hospital and finally I was able to harvest a good milk supply, I started posting to Facebook and asking the community if anyone wants my milk stash. There were some that replied, but they are too far from us. Still I did not give up, and continued to ask until some of my friends mentioned NorthernStar Mothers Milk Bank.
So I did research and called them. After the conversation they gave me the instructions on how to become a donor. It was quite challenging because you need to be interviewed, submit forms, have a doctor's appointment for your medical form, and make a laboratory appointment, for the milk bank to see if you’re qualified. But I was able to complete it all, with the support of my husband as well.
After all the tests and prayers that I did, finally I was approved and became one of the donors! Yehey! And the next challenge was to transport all the milk to the Donation center which was 1 hour and 30 minute drive from our town. Still, it was all done because of my supportive husband, as well.
I'm so happy that even though it was a challenge for us to donate, I didn't think of stopping because I know that there's a lot of babies that need this nutritious milk, and it will bring a big help to their mother as well! And I'm glad that I was able to fulfill the purpose that I chose as a Mother: helping others while helping my Baby as well to grow healthy.
My Baby now is six months old and he's growing so fast, he's a very happy Baby – that's why with all the sacrifices on my Motherhood journey that I'm going through, I must say IT'S ALL WORTH IT!!! So as long as I have the capability to donate I will, and will always love to help every baby and Mother to be healthy and happy!!! Thank you for reading, and I hope I inspired you with my story 😊"
Thank you for sharing your story, Anne, and these sweet photos of you and Baby Jof.