Why Am I Still a La Leche League Leader?
Honeoye Falls, New York USA
From: LEAVEN, Vol. 35 No. 6, December 1999-January 2000, p. 141
Every once in a while, while I am helping a mother and I share with her the ages of my children, 20, 18 and 10, she asks me in a stunned way "Why are you still involved with La Leche League?" I have been an LLL Leader for 17 years now. I've led numerous meetings with three different Groups. I've been on the Area Council for about 16 years, wearing many different hats. My children have long since weaned. Why am I still an active Leader?
Is it because of the contentment I feel when I've helped a mother successfully nurse through a difficult situation and she starts attending meetings and becomes an active Group Member? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
Is it because I can look around at the Group I co-founded and see a room full of 22 women on a sweltering hot day, including five pregnant mothers, and know that there is a great need for our services and I am contributing to meeting that need? No, that's not the reason I'm still a Leader.
Is it because through La Leche League I met some of my best friends when we were young mothers together and we still enjoy each other's company and children many years later? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
Is it because whenever I had a problem with my babies, toddlers or older children my friends and contacts in LLL pointed me in a direction that helped me search for solutions and answers? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
Is it because of the pleasure I've felt when I've stepped in at the last minute and facilitated a meeting that went well despite very little advance preparation? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
Is it because I know by being a District Coordinator and assisting to nurture Groups and Leaders I'm helping to keep La Leche League alive and well in New York West? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
Is it because of the many interesting contacts I've made across the country by being an ACLA-at-Large and helping to accredit Leaders in Illinois, California, Missouri, Minnesota, and the Dakotas and the satisfaction that comes with knowing that those Areas needed me and I was able to step in and help? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
Is it because of the joy I've felt when a former Leader Applicant becomes accredited and her knowledge in some areas of breastfeeding supercedes mine and I call on her for help? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
Is it because when a mother calls me on the phone and is too distraught to even tell me what her problem is, I can soothingly speak to her and calm her down to offer perspectives on her situation? No, that's not why I'm still a Leader.
I'm still an LLL Leader because it's who I am. I keep rediscovering the enthusiasm that I had as a proud new mother, excited Leader Applicant and newly accredited Leader as I work with mothers in my town, Group, Area and across the country. I share their experiences and they make what was old seem new again.