The only bit of fear I have lately is breastfeeding again.
There is just so much pressure on nursing mothers.
First of all... personally, nursing Jace was toe curling, painful for the first month and I was so afraid to "fail" him.
I worried about how much or how little I was producing, how to keep from leaking and how to keep from running out.
I worried about correcting his super aggressive latch (the kid had four teeth by four months).
I sat wide eyed watching the sexuality very quickly drain from my body with each scary looking suction of that damn breast pump...
We feel guilt if, heaven forbid, we need an evening off to let loose with a much anticipated large glass of wine... or three.
Well intended advice is given from people who think there is a simple answer for everything, but still nothing seems to help. The stress piles up.
We know the best thing to do is "relax", but come on... most of us moms wear many hats. We are not just mothers to that baby. We are mothers of our other children, we are carpoolers, we are wives, we are employees or employers, we are cooks, we are housekeepers... "Relax" is a far fetched.
We do our best, for as long as we can. That is our success.
Just when we find a feeding rhythm, the pressure from outside sources on the where and how you feed your baby starts to come to play...
All of the sudden our bodies have become so sexualized that using them to naturally feed our children on the go is viewed as "gross" or "inappropriate" but then, using them to sell hamburgers and to please the eye of the public is beautiful and far more accepted.
Don't get me wrong. I love the female body. Boobs are awesome and multifunctional. They makes hugs so much softer. They attract when needed AND (holy shit) they provide this liquid gold that can solely nourish a tiny human being.
:: Um... they are basically magical unicorns. If you don't appreciate all of their powers, you are ignorant to the basis of their appeal. ::
They SCREAM femininity and all the amazing power that comes with.
I just watched an interview between Alyssa Milano and Wendy Williams where Wendy shares her negative opinions about Alyssa's openness with breastfeeding.
She literally says that she has no problem with mothers dressing extremely provocatively in minimal skin tight clothing with their breasts hanging out to accentuate their sexuality in public, but feeding their child in public in inappropriate.
Seriously? Now, yes, everyone is entitled to their opinion. But to use that public platform to tell the viewers that our female bodies are perfectly acceptable as sexual expressions but using them as maternal providers should be done in privacy...? You've got to be kidding me.
For the record, I have no problem with either one. I surely believe it is important for mothers to feel beautiful and confident in their bodies, however, feeding your child is also beautiful and far more important.
I worry for the generations to come. Media puts all value on sexual appeal. Our kids grow up with that view as the "normal" and important.
Well... not our boys.
Will I nurse our new baby in front of our sons? Yes... no question about it.
How will that effect them? It will normalize breastfeeding for them at a young age. It will allow them to have knowledge and respect for the human body. It will give us a chance to instill the correct values in them while we are still their biggest influence. That's a big priority for us.
You're welcome, next generation.
Will I nurse in public? Of course. "Oh little Johnny, you're hungry? Well... you will have to wait. That lady over there on her phone might spit her latte if she catches a glimpse of my side boob."
I'm a pretty good judge of character. Around some people I will leave a room to give myself a little privacy, some I will just throw a cover on and a few I will ask to hold my hair out of the way so I can adjust. (haha)
However I choose to handle nursing my son will be based on what is most comfortable and convenient for me and him.
I'm not going out to a parking lot, and I'll be damned if I head to a bathroom to feed my kid where people relieve themselves.
Get over it.
On a positive note; Shout out to these public figures who are using their influence to normalize breastfeeding.
(climbing down off my soap box, now.)