Interview with Sydnie C. Arnold of Childbirth, Breastfeeding and Infant Parenting Classes

We are closing out the month with Sydnie C. Arnold, a Perinatal Educator, Lactation Counselor and Infant Parenting of Childbirth, Breastfeeding, and Infant Parenting Classes

Sydnie confided that when she went to college as a “mature student’ in the ‘70s. “I looked at women’s issue a little different than what was called the typical student at that time,” she explained. One day she got out of a class realizing that she was drawn to a profession that involved women serving women. She knew from having her own child, what women go through during birth. It was one of the most impersonal  experiences she had ever had. That’s when she realized that she wanted to be part of a profession that serves women during birth. Her services include more than Lamaze classes but she started her career as a Lamaze Instructor. As she worked with other birth professionals, she saw a need for herself to evolve. Today Sydnie teaches 3 different types of childbirth classes, breastfeeding, and infant parenting. Her classes are all private.

Sydnie explained that Lamaze has a balanced approach backed up by evidence-based practices. These practices are adapted from research done by such organizations as the World Health Organization and the Cochrane library.

For Sydnie, her greatest achievement is not monetary. She believes her practice has grown into a hybrid of teacher/counselor wherein it allows her to give her clients personal concierge style of service. If she doesn’t offer a particular class or service she tries to be a resource for them to other professionals. For instance: she used to work as a birth doula. Now that she stopped working as a doula she has a resource list of certified doulas that she gives her clients.

For Sydnie, the biggest mistake parents make, in western culture, is taking the time to enjoy pregnancy and prepare to be a parent. This is also a concern raised by the Lamaze International. For more information, she encourages parents to be to visit the Lamaze For Parents on the website to learn the fundamentals that the organization supports for pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting.

This year, her goals include:

  • Continuing to offer services that help her clients navigate through the resources that they have gathered and steered them towards a healthy and safe pregnancy, birth, and parenting;
  • Providing clients with guidance in interpreting information about pregnancy, birth and infant parenting that helps them become an integral part of the decision-making process;
  • Teaching labor skills that allow clients to meet their comfort level as they go through labor;
  • Sharing knowledge about medical procedures and cesarean birth so they are prepared if an intervention is needed;
  • Teaching what to expect during the postpartum period and after baby is born; and
  • Offering specific classes to address feeding, calming and helping baby to sleep better

Sydnie shares her best tip:

"Pregnant women need to take the time to love themselves and their babies. They need to take the time to rest, well as, eat well and exercise. They need to time to catch a nap whenever possible. Try having lunch away from the workplace. When you come home from work, first thing expectant moms should do is sit down, put your feet up listen to music and rest."

In order to stay up to date with what is going on in her profession and network with other professionals, she attends at least one conference a year. Sydnie is certified, trained or affiliated with the following programs: Lamaze, DONA (Birth Doula), Healthy Children (CLC), Childbirth and Postpartum professionals Association (CAPPA), Happiest Baby, HUG, Dancing For Birth, Florida Breastfeeding Coalition and Birth Network of Florida.

Finally, to enlighten all the moms to be out there, Sydnie leaves us with a list of misconceptions about Lamaze vs. what Lamaze actually is:

  • Lamaze Is all about the breathing - ­Breathing is one of many skills that may help women in labor. Positioning, movement, massage, visualization are some of my favorites.
  • Lamaze promises pain-free childbirth ­ - It helps women respond to labor in ways that both facilitate labor and increase comfort.
  • Lamaze means you can not have an epidural­ - Classes provided information about natural options as well as medications.
  • Lamaze doesn’t work - ­Lamaze seeks to help build your confidence and ensure that you have the support you meet during pregnancy and birth.

For more information about Sydnie C. Arnold, you may email her at [email protected] or call her at 407-455-1672


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