Monday, July 18, 2011

Dear Mom, Thank you for breastfeeding me.

Welcome to The Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival!  

This post was written as part of The Breastfeeding Cafe's Carnival. For more info on the Breastfeeding Cafe, go to www.breastfeedingcafe.wordpress.com. For more info on the Carnival or if you want to participate, contact Claire at clindstrom2 {at} gmail {dot} com. 

Today's post is about how the mothers before you influenced your choice to breastfeed. Please read the other blogs in today's carnival listed below and check back for more posts July 18th through the 31st!


Dear Mom,

Thank you for breastfeeding me. As the youngest child, I didn't see you nurse any of my siblings, but you always spoke fondly of your times nursing all three of us. You've laughed when telling me that I weaned myself on Independence Day (which turned out to be very indicative of my personality), though I know now that the moment must have been bittersweet for you.

I remember one time, when I was a young teen, your friend J visited us with her new baby boy. At one point, the baby began to fuss a bit, and J recognized that he needed to nurse. She struggled for a while to keep a blanket over both of them, finally asking you if you "mind" if she nursed him without it. You shrugged your shoulders, smiled at her, and said something like, "I don't mind if you don't!" She and her nursling relaxed and nursed uncovered, and I remember feeling like I was being allowed in on a very special moment. It's one of the first times I remember witnessing breastfeeding. You've always been supportive of me nursing Daniel openly and without covering myself if that's how I'm most comfortable. You helped me to be nonchalant about it around extended family members and others when I was feeling tentative.

Thank you for telling stories of breastfeeding your kids (and others' stories about nursing), and never allowing it to be taboo. Thank you for passing on the history of relatives who were wet-nurses. I love that you say that breastfeeding is the ideal feeding technique for "lazy" people like you because it's just so easy. (Breastmilk is ready-made, the right temperature, and portable!) I also appreciate very much that you've never even insinuated that I should wean Daniel at any certain time. Instead, you've encouraged me to do what feels right, to keep going (no matter what anyone else says) as long as we both want to.

Thank you for supporting, encouraging, and comforting me when we were returning together from vacation and TSA denied me the alternate screening for my breastmilk. You never questioned my need to transport expressed milk (having told me you were proud of me for choosing to donate my extra milk). You held me when I cried. You were outraged with me and you helped me share my story.

Thank you for encouraging me in my activism surrounding breastfeeding. Though you admitted to never having the thought to do so with respect to breastfeeding when you were a nursing mother, you've always been a strong feminist and an advocate for women's rights. I am lucky to have grown up with you as an example for how to stand up for myself and my beliefs. I'm proud that I can influence you too, when you (for instance) change your Facebook picture to the International Breastfeeding Symbol during World Breastfeeding Week.

Thank you, most of all, for simply being so positive about breastfeeding. Though I suspect I would've chosen to breastfeed Daniel anyway, your consistent support for breastfeeding helped that decision to be an incredibly easy one for me. You even told me once that if you get to choose your job in heaven, you'd like to have a little baby to nurse and rock all day.

I'm so grateful for all you've done (and continue to do) for me.

Love,
Amy


Here are more post by the Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival participants! Check back because more will be added throughout the day.

8 comments:

  1. You're so very blessed to have someone in your life that supported you with breastfeeding. There are a lot of women that lack this support.

    There's no doubt that your blog helps a lot of those women out there!

    Keep up the great work!!

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  2. Amy, I read your TSA outrage story when you wrote it and it still makes me so angry. But thankfully, I have been able to forward it on the other nursing moms who may want to transport milk through the airports. It is so wonderful to hear that your mother supported you through that and understands how horrible that was. Even though I feel supported in my breastfeeding journey, I don't know if I know many moms who would have done so, or seen it for the discrimination it was. You are so amazing in your fight to help mothers who need breastmilk for their young ones as well. All the best.

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  3. this is really sweet! It's awesome when Mothers can support and encourage their daughters=)

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  4. That was beautiful! Your mother must be so happy to read this. :) I love her line about her preferred job in heaven — that would be lovely.

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  5. I(the mom) am very happy to read this and also quite humbled to realize how much attention you were paying to things, Amy. I wish for every parent that their adult child(ren) might bless them the way that mine have and do. It is very sweet indeed, my dear Amy. Love you mucho!

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  6. Oh my goodness I have tears in my eyes. I'm sure it's partially the pregnancy hormones, but wow that was moving! I really hope that when Peanut grows up, she thinks all the same things you do about your mom.

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  7. So beautiful. Thank you for sharing this!

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