About Donna Bruschi

Hi! I'm Donna Bruschi.

I encourage a model of practice, support, education, and paying it forward.

Breastfeed as a baby --> watch your siblings and relatives breastfeed --> watch your friends and community breastfeed --> Have a baby and get help-->Breastfeed your own babies-->Help others.


These are my principles:

1. Feed your baby. Your baby needs enough food every day to be strong, to grow, and to breastfeed well. We monitor behavior, weight, and poopy diapers. You will supplement as needed to support optimal growth.

2. Support your milk production. Your breasts need frequent stimulation and milk removal 8-16 times per day starting in the first two hours after birth. This is important, and how they can support your baby's growth long term.

3. Get help from people who understand breastfeeding. Look for help from an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC.) We are the only health care providers who are knowledgable about ALL aspects of breastfeeding. (That said, we don't all have the same amount of experience and training.)

We are trained to educate, counsel, support, screen and refer.

We educate about all aspects of lactation and infant feeding. We counsel mothers and families while they are making changes and offer empathy and listening in this time of transition. We support mothers no matter how they feeding their baby. Not everyone has an easy time breastfeeding! While we are listening, we are screening for situations in mama's health, baby's health, family needs, and whatever else comes up.

We refer to pediatric doctors, dentists, feeding specialists, mental health services, and bodyworkers, and of course to our local volunteer breastfeeding support groups.


These are my Policies:

  1. I will do my best to get breastfeeding right for you and your baby.
  2. I will bring respect, love and caring into every interaction.
  3. Laughing and crying. Yes, to each of course, and sometimes together.
  4. We will be discussing your baby's soiled diapers. I expect pictures if you think there is something wrong.
  5. Dress Code: PJ's are A-OK with me. (I will be showered, professionally dressed, hands washed, masked, and hair tied back.)
  6. The "Grab it and Ram it" method. You and I don't like being force fed and neither does your baby. I don't do it.
  7. It takes a Village  - There is no one lonelier than a new mom. I will get you connected with other breastfeeding moms.
  8. I will work with you if you are in a financial constriction.
  9. I want breastfeeding to work for you and your baby. "Breastfeeding" is not some Gold Star, A++, ideal standard that you have to meet.

These are my standards:

  1. My first concern is to make sure your baby is fed. My first choice of food is your breast milk, either at your breast, expressed or from your stored supplies. My next choice would be donor milk from a milk bank or other donor. If that isn't possible, we will use formula.
  2. I fully expect for you to be nursing almost pain free in 1 visit, and completely pain free in fewer than 3 visits.
  3. You, your baby, your breastfeeding goals, opinions, culture, lifestyle, and family are respected when we work together.
  4. I have an evidence-based practice. What we do has been studied and shown to work and you won't get stuck with mis-information.
  5. You are the expert in your baby, (even if you don't feel like it, yet.) You set the pace and decide if you like something, or don't.
  6. Keep your baby calm. It is essential to be gentle with your baby and follow their lead into breastfeeding.
  7. I follow current American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines and track weight, stools and behavior, so you are confident your baby is getting enough milk.
  8. Your situation, problem, solution, and story are private, except where I, like other health care providers, have legal responsibilities mandated by law.


I always planned on breastfeeding my baby because of my mother's story.

My mother was breastfed and grew up in a breastfeeding community. When I was born, she assumed we would breastfeed, but ran into difficulties almost immediately. By two weeks, I was bottle feeding and my mom was sad.
Two years later, my brother was born. Again she had difficulties, but this time a nurse helped her with her positioning and latch. With that education and with the support of her best friend, who was also breastfeeding, she happily nursed both my brother and sister. I grew up watching my mom breastfeed.

As an adult, I watched when my friend breastfed her new baby. When I became pregnant, she brought me to my first La Leche League meeting. I saw a roomful of mothers nursing their babies and children. It was so normal and natural that I wanted to be part of it. 

  1. I knew I wanted to breastfeed.
  2. I had grown up with breastfeeding babies around me.
  3. I had a strong desire to not repeat my mother's mistakes.
  4. My mom and husband had a strong desire to support me
  5. I had breastfeeding support resources in place
  6. I planned for an unmedicated birth

But, the birth went off the rails. I had a long labor and a c-section. We were separated for hours after birth.


My birth started a cascade of disasters that was challenging to recover from.

It's still hard to think about, but we all did our parts, and we survived.

I committed to nursing my baby even though he wasn't gaining weight and it hurt like hell. My mom made appointments and drove me to lactation consultations. My husband worked, and took care of me and our baby. Our extended family took care of all of us. Our pediatrician gave us time and space to learn. 

My son and I figured it out. By the time I returned to work at 2 months postpartum, he was rebounding from failure to thrive, towards the 90th percentile.


I tell you all this because it lays my foundation for helping new mothers.

As my baby grew, I volunteered for La Leche League. I was trained, mentored and became a LLL Group Leader. I helped women resolve their breastfeeding challenges over the phone and at our monthly group meeting in New Paltz.  25 years later, my kids are grown and I'm still leading La Leche League of New Paltz.


With my kids in school, I considered my next career.

I worked nearly full time making neon signs and lighting. I worked Spa reservations and reception at Mohonk Mountain House. I taught XC ski lessons there as well. I taught Communication Skills and briefly edited the LLL of NYS newsletter. I took Continuing Ed classes in breastfeeding.

Mothers of big kids would thank me for helping them during their breastfeeding years. They remembered little things I said that changed their life, or made them feel more confident.


Why not a lactation consultant?

I used my personal breastfeeding experience, communication skills, took more classes and did more trainings to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC).

It was easy because my training was mostly formally studying what I had learned first hand while nursing three kids and counseling mothers through LLL. I also learned about problems I would rarely ever see in real life, but, I would be ready to help anyone who contacted me.

I sat for the IBCLC exam in 2010 and started my current private practice while I was waiting for the results. (It takes 4 months to find out.)


Hello...New Baby New Paltz...

In 2009, I started meeting on Tuesday mornings at 10:00 with mothers of new babies. It started slowly (1 mother) and steadily grew (She brought her friend, who brought a friend, who brought a friend, and another who picked up a postcard...)

More than breastfeeding, it was a time to relax, make friends, vent about whatever, learn how babies really work and most importantly, celebrate how mothering a new baby is exhausting and utterly ordinary.

Except for the moments when it is absolutely not ordinary:

  • Looking into your newborn's eyes
  • When your baby looks at you and reacts
  • Peacefully nursing in the dark in the middle of the night 
  • The buttery smell of a breastfed baby
  • A pearl of crystalline drool perched on their lower lip
  • Chubby hands, tiny teeth, silky skin
  • Their inner drive to roll, crawl, stand, climb, walk and run
  • In short, every little thing about a baby 


Babies don't keep. They grow and grow until they are all grown up. 

Mine grew up and moved out. It felt funny for a bit, but I live how I like now. I love my work and I have time to devote to helping mothers learn to breastfeed.

My partner Michael and I live in Highland, NY. We spend a lot of time outdoors, especially riding bikes. We like cooking and eating. We enjoy working on projects together. We love when our kids come to visit and share stories of their adventures, jobs and pets.


I like the business side of my work.

I never wanted to work in a hospital. I like being in private practice, driving around the Mid-Hudson region, helping mamas and babies overcome their breastfeeding challenges. I enjoy sending off texts of encouragement, and witnessing unhappy and/or confused mothers blossom with confidence, as they figure out breastfeeding. I like selling bras and I send packages out to families across the country. I like doing graphic design for my cards, brochures and website. I enjoy writing for my newsletter and website. 

I love creating Mother's Circles--watching them grow, befriend each other and then move out into the world--And start anew: 1 mother, then a second, who brings a friend, another picks up a postcard and a fifth mom who reserves through Meetup....

And maybe one day, I hope that's where I will see you. I can't wait to hear how you are learning about yourself and your baby.

Let's talk

If you would like to share what's been happening with your pregnancy, birth or breastfeeding, I'm happy to have conversation with you. Please schedule a complementary 15 minute conversation.

Send a request