Jennifer Letzer is 36 years old and has 3 children, ages 8, 6 and 3. Her husband Devin is Irish, and their children’s names are Irish – Ruairi (pronounced Rory), Saoirse (Sor-sha) and Ciaran (Keer-an). When Saoirse started preschool, she was frustrated that people couldn’t pronounce her name, but Jennifer told her to give it time, and eventually it would work out.
Jennifer was a newspaper reporter in California before becoming a mom. She is currently a labor and post-partum doula and Lactation Educator working towards certification through the Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association (CAPPA). CAPPA is an international certification organization for Doulas, Childbirth Educators, and Lactation Educators. Her plan had been to go back to reporting, but, she said, “Having my kids changed me, and this new path felt like a calling to me.”
Jennifer and her family moved to Atlanta, Georgia from California last summer. She had been part of the Santa Clarita chapter of HMN off and on for 3 years, but never became an official member. When she felt more settled in Georgia, she looked to see if there was a chapter in the Atlanta area, and there wasn’t. Another mom was looking for a co-leader to start a chapter, and Jennifer jumped in with both feet. She became an HMN member in August of 2019, and the kickoff meeting for the Atlanta Metro West chapter was in December 2019. The chapter is small, less than 5 members, but Jennifer has hopes that it will grow with time. “Our Atlanta Metro West chapter provides support, education, and social network for parents interested in green living, alternative health care, and gentle, responsive parenting.”
“As a leader I feel like we make a real difference to the moms. They came to the meeting and shared birth stories, and challenges, and what they’re currently working on. They felt safe, and welcome. I joined HMN because I was looking for that sense of community, a safe space to talk with, and learn from other moms. “
Holistic living is important to Jennifer and her husband. Her husband is actually the one who lead the way into their approach to holistic living, but Jennifer was completely on board with it. All the kids have been cloth diapered, and Jennifer treats minor ailments with essential oils and/or tonics. Jennifer is trying to be rid of disposable plastics and uses plant-based detergents in her home. They practice family yoga, positive affirmations and meditation, so much so that when her oldest is feeling stressed or conflicted he’ll say, “I need to go meditate in my room.” A chosen recognition of the need for a time out, interesting and healthy self-actualization for an 8-year-old boy.