My archives might be a little outdated especially the older blogs. My links above are all new and current.

I have only positive things to say about Permission to Mother, an autobiographical account of a thoughtful mother and clinician who courageously writes from her heart, soul, brain, and personal experience; who is open to change in her views and opinions and is not guided by the safety of rules of any group or the status quo; she is guided by love and openness to the experiences life brings her and her family. Her process benefits her and those around her and those who read her words. And to add to that, the writing style and story telling ability here make it a very enjoyable read speckled with both the humor and seriousness of life. ~Laura Keegan RN FNP, author of Breastfeeding with Comfort and Joy

Readers enjoy your feedback and Reviews (82!) on amazon. Kindle Version Available!

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

TIME - You know the one....

Photo of woman with breast-feeding child


Yes of course, I agreed, offensive and controversial.... I went on to tell them my passion is to help mothers succeed at breastfeeding and it really wasn't a big deal to see a mom nurture her kid, but many people think it is. My son who is embarrassed by every thing I say, didn't think twice about any of this.So, I haven't read the article, yet. I've only seen the cover.




 I went to Publix tonight ( a few weeks ago, this sat in draft mode), I thought I'd better get a copy of that TIME issue and weigh in as an early mothering expert. You guys want to know what I think, right? They didn't have the issue. There was a May 14th issue. At check out with my 15 year old, I asked to the cashier and carry-out people, if they knew if there were any more around. They said they never saw it. They thought that the store probably wouldn't put something out like that because it might be offensive. So I haven't read the article. I have only seen the cover.

When I first saw the cover of TIME, I first thought, big deal, it could have been me....A photo of a mother with her kid standing next to her reaching for her breast to breastfeed.

I could have been on the cover!
Photo by Bernadette Clark
In the course of my daily work, it is not so unusual for me to see children breastfeeding. It's not really a thing that phases me.

However, I never did a professional poised photo shoot with my three year old(s). Most of the time, when I fed a boy the same age as the one in the photo, it was in bed, on the couch, in a chair, in PJ's or something cozy ... and I was overweight .... Most often, my hair was wet, in a towel... definitely no make-up. And there was eye-to-eye contact, laughter, happiness and connection. My boys also were often in over sized T's or some other comfy houseclothes, barefoot and suited for cuddle time. Most of the time.

But  at times, the boys stood and see if they were big enough to nurse or just because they could. If they could they were happy. By three years old  if I pulled out a camera in a propped situation they would have ran. The boy in the TIME newspaper looks a little stressed. His mouth is just there.


Breastfeeding a three year old is about so many different things. It's hard to condense the value of nursing a three year old into one photo or one short news article and condense the years that lead to such a journey.

I want to help mother's overcome the common obstacles society places on them that interfere with breastfeeding.

It's OK to speak up for your birth.
It's OK to hold your baby after birth. No one should rob you of that time.
It's OK to co-sleep.... in the same room... in the same bed... even if you have a dog.
It's OK to hold your baby and Babywear. It's OK to stay at home with your baby (or get out if you prefer.)
It's OK to be the most natural mother you can be if you desire. You are mom enough, you are doing a fantastic job. Traditional Medicine shouldn't make you feel guilty. A cover of TIME shouldn't make you feel guilty either.

Yet, it's nice to see breastfeeding and Dr. Sears get some coverage in TIME.
Breastfeeding Meeting in PSL
I love seeing anything that supports the upper durations of breastfeeding.
Nursing a three year old is more common than you think. Even in Port Saint Lucie, Florida.
All the power and honor to the mom who got the opportunity to be on TIME's cover.

As a new mom you only have to take it day-by-day and not worry about nursing your child till he can tell you he wants to join the military. The moms I see on a daily basis are doing an excellent job attending to their children's needs.

My 15 year old finally saw the cover to TIME. He said, "That's not natural." He meant the pose. He knows breastfeeding is natural. He KNOWS.

Since seeing the cover my younger son has found mommy-stuffed-animals for his baby-stuff-animals. Thank you TIME for reminding my 8 year old how his little babies need their mommy's night-nights.


 I have a copy now. I'll let you know soon what I think of the article, itself.










Non-Specific Hormone Problems

I refer out to compounding pharmacist often. I am willing to try cutting edge approaches to help balance non-specific hormone problems. Some people call it Anti-aging Medicine (or Bio-identicals). I find those titles too limiting to describe the full-spectrum of what I do as I help teens with issues; preconception & lactation; and weight-loss, fatigue, and libido in all ages(both genders).

I should have been an Endocrinologist?
Maybe, but I like being a primary care physician who can work with open-minded specialist. There are like-minded endocrinologist, but they are hard to find.

Patients don't understand the relationship I have with the Pharmacist I consult with and patients often go to my nurses to ask if I will transfer the recommended prescription hormone to a different pharmacy. I wrote out a dialogue for my nurses to share with callers why I won't transfer locally. I decided to share my reasons with you. Pardon me for talking about myself in third person.


"Dr. Punger refers you to the best resources for  your circumstances. She uses the PharmD, Doctor in Pharmacy, (the compounding pharmacist) as her clinical extender which means you are getting expert team approach care. It is not likely she will call your hormones locally if she made a referral that you agreed to. The pharmacist is a part of your medical care team. She relies on him and his team to gather information about hormones and endocrine disorders not so always readily accepted by other MD's and drugstore pharmacists. The PharmD attends continuing education and meetings when she can not. She relies on him to make recommendations about dosage and delivery route (for example, SL, sublinguals are not available locally). The Pharmacist also is available to you for on-going opinions and adjustments in dosage often after hours. That will save you face-to-face visits. At the current time, Dr. Punger prefers to keep up with her primary care skills and she can extend you the specialized hormone balance by keeping the pharmacist on the team. It is rare to find a physician who continues primary care AND extends services to hormones to the extent she does. By using the same pharmacy team, medial errors are reduced, as compared to having different pharmacies and different protocols for her to keep up with. 

She has no disclosures. She does not receive kick-back from the pharmacy. Nor are PharmD's employed by the practice. She simply refers you to the best resource for your circumstances at the time. In the meantime you are not paying high fees for anti-aging or weight loss clinics. Most of the consult is handled by phone call after initial face-to-face appointment with Dr. Punger. The teamwork between the PharmD and the MD is a highly specialized one and patients come from all over seeking this kind of care.

Dr. Punger won't refer you to the Pharmacist if she doesn't think you need that approach. If you simply need straight forward Vit D, or Synthroid, you will be directed to the locally pharmacy from the get-go. She will send you to an ENT, GYN, thyroid specialist right-off if that is what she thinks is best. 

If you don't like the team approach Dr. Punger has with the PharmD you may seek on your own a GYN or endocrinologist (who will likely tell you that what Dr. Punger does doesn't work) and offer you other options. Understandably not all patients will respond to Dr. Punger's treatment and you are free to seek any opinions you want. At that point, you will be under the specialist care and Dr. Punger will no longer be responsible for your hormone balance/weight loss/bleeding etc.... 

Dr. Punger has had good results with her approach and thus she continues to use all the resources available to her."

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