XENIA — For the winners of Greene County Public Health’s Breastfeeding Awareness Month Essay Contest, nursing their babies meant more than nutrition.
Athena Brown, of Fairborn, and Jasmin Echegoyen, of Wilberforce — the mothers who won the contest held through the department’s WIC Program — focused on family relationships in their essays.
While Brown’s breastfeeding journey hasn’t been easy, as she talks about in her essay, she said the support of her husband and her mother convinced her to not give up nursing her son and daughter.
“When I know that everything I have gone through is a part of giving my children the best nourishment I can, that’s when it’s all worth it!” Brown wrote. “Breastfeeding has not only impacted the lives of our children, but our family as a whole.”
Echegoyen wrote in her essay about coming from a long line — five generations — of mothers who also breastfed their babies.
“The security and feeling loved has always been there because the love, security, closeness and nutrition can never be compared to a bottle,” she wrote. “Breastfed babies and mommies form a bond that can never be broken … ’
August was Breastfeeding Awareness Month in Ohio. According to GCPH officials, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life and continued breastfeeding with the addition of appropriate solid food for the first year and beyond.