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The relevance of stance

November 2021

At home, snowy landscapes are setting in, bridging to wintertime outdoor activities. Meanwhile, it is a nice time for indoor activities — like sorting out photos, for example. I came upon a photograph that paved the way to the topic: The relevance of stance in our role in guiding parents.

To help explain; First, the meaning attributed to stance[1]; the way in which a person is standing| A person’s approach to (a particular topic). Then, the meaning of the photo (taken a while ago on an overseas trip, closer to the equator): I was wonder-struck when I saw the orientation of the crescent moon visible in the night sky.

 moon-ga60153456 1280

I learned that the orientation of the crescent[2] depends on the latitude of the person observing it - a detail of great importance when having a dialogue or producing an illustration that draws attention to the features of the satellite. Some may refer to the enlightened portion of the moon as a crescent or the letter “C” others as a bowl, a boat, or the letter “U.”

Finally, to support the correlation between the observation and the role of health care providers in supporting/assisting parents in a comfortable breast|chestfeeding position and in latching their baby, an anecdote:

A newcomer to the neonatal team invites* an experienced team member to observe and then reflect on the breast|chestfeeding assistance offered to the parent.

The novice sat alongside the dyad.
The ambiance was calm, and the communication was effective.
Then, in a supportive tone, the novice voiced out a few indicators (~chin, bottom lip, lower portion of areola) visible from her|his standpoint.
And the novice also picked up on the parent’s sudden interrogative facial expression and body twisting attempts to laterally visualize the indicators.
So, with a gentle smile and a brief explanation, the novice gracefully modified his|her stance to draw attention to the features apparent as to the parent’s stance or viewpoint.
The parent smiled in turn.
And the counselling session progressed.

In the end, the observer reflected gratitude for the invitation and highlighted detail of great importance that played a part in professional enrichment, The relevance of stance.

Many of us have been privileged to participate in the implementation of best-practice programs such as BFHI/BFI, as an observer. Particularly in the development of competency and supporting practice of new staff members and thus prize details of great importance.

May enlightenments define your journey.


Manon Campagna, IBCLC
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[1] Antidote 10, version 1 [Logiciel], Montréal, Druide informatique, 2018.
[2] The StarChild team. High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC). Astrophysics Science Division (ASD). NASA/GSFC. (2002). StarChild question of the month for March 2002 https://starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/questions/question43.html
*With Client permission
World Health Organization. (2020). Competency verification toolkit: ensuring competency of direct care providers to implement the baby-friendly hospital initiative: web annex D: examiner's resource (‎sorted by BFHI step)‎.


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