Rebecca Wanosik is a nursing mother of six, so when she got the emergency text about a baby in need of a wet nurse she didn't hesitate to rush to the hospital.
While some people might have balked at the thought of feeding a stranger's baby, Wanosik didn't think twice about it.
Wanosik breastfed all six of her children and is a passionate breastfeeding advocate. Having overcome one of the most devastating things that could happen to a breastfeeding mother, Wanosik wouldn't hesitate to help another baby in need.
Last year, CPS forcibly removed all of her children for a traumatizing 10 months after they mistook her baby's rare connective tissue disorder and Vitamin D deficiency for child abuse. Her son was just nine weeks old.
Children's Services decided that pumped breast milk and donor milk was medically unethical, so they switched the baby to formula. All of her children were returned and the family is happy to be together again.
"It was awful," Wanosik says in her interview with Babble. "Last year was atrocious, and it's why I am [so] adamant about feeding a baby whose mother can't get to her."
Baby Gaby Rios was in the care of her family members, while her mother, Melissa Rios, was recovering from surgery. Since Melissa had undergone general anesthesia, she was unable to breastfeed her 5-month-old daughter.
The little baby refused to drink from a bottle - only consuming about a half-ounce of breast milk in 13 hours. A mutual friend texted Wanosik with the emergency breastfeeding request.
Little Gaby kept Wanosik up all night, making up for lost time eating.
"It was like an orchestra," Wanosik told Babble. "It was just impossible — I admire mothers of twins, I don't know how they do it!"
She snapped the sweet pic of Gaby and her son nursing, adorably holding hands while they fed. Then, she sent it to Rios.
"She responded with tons of hearts and said, 'This just makes me feel so much better.' She was very grateful."
Wanosik is a breastfeeding advocate and founder of an online lactation cookie business, naturally, she posted the picture to her Facebook account.
Within 24 hours, hundreds of people reported her image to Facebook as "sick" and "nasty". When the social media platform did nothing, the trolls reported her entire account as fraudulent. It was deactivated by Facebook.
It took several days for Wanosik to prove that she owned her account, only to have it removed a second time after it was reactivated.
Although some people see it as "taboo" to feed someone else's baby, it isn't illegal. Neither is a mother posting photos of herself breastfeeding. Facebook's community standards even allow a woman to expose a nipple in photos, as long as a child is nursing off of the other.
Asked if she would do it again, Wanosik says "absolutely".
"When babies are hungry and their mothers aren't there to feed them, I would hope any mother would do her service and support her village. It is really that simple of a thing."
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