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Monday, September 9, 2013

Behind the Scenes: Breastfeeding Uncovered

I can't believe that it has just been one week since Dr. Jack Newman came to Manila.  It feels like a long time ago and I am definitely ready for him to come back.  You can read about how we planned to bring him to Manila here.  For this post, I'm not going to talk about my learnings from his talk.  I'll save that for a future post.  But you can read fellow LATCHer Eliza Ypon's post about that here

More than 300 people registered for the Breastfeeding Uncovered symposium.  I have to say that organizing the symposium was truly a labor of love.  LATCH members stepped up and managed to run the event without any professionals or without hiring any events organizers.  I also want to say a special thank you to Benz Co Rana, Nice Print Photo and Bryan Sales for helping us document the event.

Let me share with you some snippets from our very short weekend with Dr. Jack.  He arrived from Jakarta on Friday night.  Jen and I picked him up and braved Friday payday night traffic to meet with fellow LATCHers Buding and Amelia at Sentro 1771.  Dr. Jack tried Filipino specialities like the corned beef sinigang, kesong puti balls, smoked bangus rolls and adobo sa gata.  We also took him fruit shopping where we got mangoes, lanzones and mangosteens!  He was looking for salak - a fruit he particularly liked but unfortunately, it was not locally available. 

Dr. Jack had been in Asia for about 5 nights already.  But apparently, he didn't adjust well to the time change and was averaging 2-3 hours of sleep at night plus cat naps during the day.  So we headed home early as the next day was symposium day.  Luckily, he was staying at Exchange Regency which was a stone's throw away from The Medical City.  

LATCHers were up and early at The Medical City along with the staff of the Center for Patient Partnership and Joyce Martinez, a lactation nurse and another volunteer.  Dr. Jack was also early because he only got to test his equipment that morning.  He also gamely signed books and posed for photos with the early birds --> yes it pays to be early!  Even with the auditorium not yet 100% full, the symposium started on time (okay - 5 minutes late) pursuant to Dr. Jack's instructions.  He as adamant that we keep time (and constantly reminded us to remind him of his remaining time left!)

For lunch, LATCH's resident chef, Amelia prepared an excellent selection to refuel him for the afternoon's session.  Considering his international stature, we were prepared to pull out all stops but to our pleasant surprise, he was very easy to please and gamely tried anything and everything that was prepared for him.

The symposium was actually just one day but we thought of having him stay for 1 extra day to allow him to visit Manila.  Jen was the tourist guide and with her husband, Stan, they took him to Legazpi Market, Ayala Museum and to old Manila - Intramuros and Binondo.
photos from Next9

For his last evening in Manila, LATCH had a fellowship night at Barbara's Heritage Restaurant. The affair was attended by LATCHers and their families.  I had previously purchased Filipino costumes for N and E which they wore to our trip to Las Casas in Bataan.  I decided to let them wear those clothes tonight to keep with the Filipiana theme of the restaurant.  Stan's 2011 breastfeeding photographs were also exhibited at Barbara's for that night.

Barbara's was a perfect venue for the fellowship night as they had a cultural show showcasing dances from various regions of the Philippines.   Dr. Jack joined the performers when they asked for volunteers for tinikling!  We were very happy that he enjoyed his short trip to the Philippines and was actually looking forward to his next visit.

Of course, Breastfeeding Uncovered would not have been possible without our sponsors and friends so I take this opportunity to thank them again.

In case you missed Breastfeeding Uncovered, here are snippets of the symposium from Salamat Dok.  Dr. Jack was interviewed for the program and the clip aired on Sunday, 1 September 2013.

Dr. Jack's updated version of  The Ultimate Breastfeeding Book of Answers Revised and Updated; The Most Comprehensive Problem-Solving Guid... by Random House Publishing Group will be coming out in January 2014.  Sadly, the book is not locally available but you can read the PDF version via Scribd:

Will Dr. Jack Newman be coming back to Manila?  Stay tuned and like the LATCH Facebook page to stay updated!

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