Please Help a Fellow NP Mama!

Written by Dionna on January 23rd, 2011

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Jen!

I’d like you to meet an amazing mama, Jen of The Dinoia Family. Jen is a wonderful woman, mother, and writer. She is a member of our natural parenting community. She is the mother of three beautiful children, and she breastfed all of them.

She was still breastfeeding her youngest, Nicholas, until this past October when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Like many nursing mothers, Jen was devastated to hear that not only would she be forced to wean Nicholas before they were ready, but she would have to undergo a mastectomy.

From Jen’s blog:

As I mentioned before, it’s not a vanity (well, I don’t think) issue for me; it’s the removal of a working body part (or two). . . . As it turns out (and it isn’t something I expected to happen), Nicholas is still morning (occasionally), night and comfort nursing. It is far from his primary source of nutrition, but nevertheless, the “na-na” is still a part of his life. I am mourning not only any future loss, but a current need that was so easily filled. I am sure there will be no ill effects from a somewhat forced weaning, but it’s sad to me that it won’t be on our terms.

Will you join me in showing love and support for Jen?

Since then, Jen has furiously researched her options and documented her journey. She has also wrestled with coming to terms over the decisions she made about her health, and she’s collaborated to educate others about how to help parents (and their families) who are undergoing cancer treatment.1

Jen had her mastectomy in November, and this week she had reconstructive surgery to help her regain a sense of normalcy after the mastectomy.

I keep reading Jen’s updates and wishing there were something I could do to reach out and help. But how does one make a difference from across the country?

And then it hit me: I can get you all to help me. Writing for Code Name: Mama and cofounding both Natural Parents Network and NursingFreedom.org has blessed me with a community of thousands of parents who are kind and caring.

So what could we do to reach out to one of our own? To wrap her in the love of our natural parenting community?

Let’s make it easy: I am asking you today to electronically send me cards, letters, magazine/Netflix subscriptions, pictures, CD’s, videos, hilarious jokes, words of love and support, and/or anything else you can think of to make Jen smile.

To avoid having to work out mailing addresses and postage, I would like to make this an electronic shower of love and support. Here’s how it will work:

  • You can email cards, letters, jokes, etc. to me with the words “TO JEN” in the subject line at Dionna {at} NaturalParentsNetwork {dot} com. I will forward them to Jen in manageable bundles so that we aren’t overwhelming her inbox.
  • If you would like to send Jen something through Amazon (a book or magazine subscription, perhaps), email me and we will work out those details.2
  • If you have another idea that can be accomplished electronically, let me know!

When Lauren and I created Natural Parents Network, we wanted to harness the power of the Internet to connect, inform, empower, and inspire the natural parenting community. I would love to see the natural parenting community come together this week to support one of our own. Please help me.

  1. See the trio of posts Jen, Sarah, and I wrote: Instead of This, Try; Navigating a Rough Road; How to Help a Parent Undergoing Cancer Treatment; and Cleaning for a Reason.
  2. What I will probably do is have you send an Amazon gift certificate to me, and I will send it to Jen, so we aren’t giving out her home address to random internet people.

About The Author: Dionna

Code Name: Mama CodeNameMama My NPN Posts

Dionna is co-founder of Natural Parents Network. She blogs about natural parenting and life with a toddler-almost-preschooler at Code Name: Mama. She also co-founded NursingFreedom.org, a site dedicated to normalizing breastfeeding anytime, anywhere.

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4 Responses to Please Help a Fellow NP Mama!

  1. Sarah

    I am so sorry to hear another mamma has to go through this! I haven’t gone through it myself (and really hoping I never need too) but…

    My mom was diagnosed when she was 29 – she’d just had my youngest sister, and breast fed all of us. My Aunt was also young 30 something, and so was my cousin when they were diagnosed. The link below is to my cousins blog – she’s writing about her journey and I really think it can help to know someone else has been there – is there.

    I am currently pregnant with number 3 – and the thought that I am now at that age and stage of life where so many others in my family have been scares me.

    http://survivorangel.blogspot.com/

  2. teresa  

    I just emailed you a note.

  3. Ronise

    I have some information to send since I’ve been where Jen is… I was diagnosed on 12/2/09, just 6 months after I stopped nursing my twin boys after 2.5 years. Being 38 and not having a family history, it being breast cancer didn’t even cross my mind. I thought the tumor was a plugged duct that had returned. Stay vigilant ladies, especially if there’s family history.

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