Nursling

I wish the blogging format on WordPress had a subtitle option for posts.  If it did the title of this post would have looked like this:

Nursling

Or, why I post pictures of my boobs on Instagram

I’m going to talk about my boobs today.  You’ve been warned.  But, I urge you to read on… especially if the topic of my boobs makes you uncomfortable, because it’s you who has the most to gain from this post.

I breastfeed Margot.  I’ve talked about it on here, I’ve posted pictures of her eating on here, I do it freely in public, and I am passionate about it.  There are a lot of reasons that I chose to breastfeed and I feel very lucky that Margot and I have had success with breastfeeding. I am not going to talk about all of the reasons why I am breastfeeding her, because I think those are made abundantly clear, and if you’re unsure of the reasons, I would direct you to google to find out for yourself.  I am also (not now, not ever) going to make any disparaging remarks about formula.  I think formula is great for a lot of reasons, too.  I am making this disclaimer because the topic of breastfeeding is a contentious one, and I do not seek to offend or upset anyone with my opinions.  I’m not making any arguments in the “mommy wars”… I just want to talk about myself (isn’t that what blogs are for, anyhow??  To talk about one’s self?) and I also kind of want to defend all the boobie pictures I splash all over the internet.

If you are an occasional reader of this blog, or if you follow me on Instagram, or if you received a Christmas card from The Other Moores, you have seen at least one photo of me breastfeeding Margot. I take a lot of pictures of her breastfeeding when her and I are home alone because, well, that’s how we spend a lot of our time together.  And I really love it. And I think it’s beautiful.  I love when she looks up at me while she’s eating with her big blue-grey eyes.  Those are the moments that I don’t ever want to forget.

Photo 3

She is beautiful.  Breastfeeding is beautiful.  And, more importantly, it’s normal.

This is the part where I get defensive.  I can not understand how the above photo is offensive to anyone in this age of abundant cleavage.  You are not seeing anything more than what you would see if I were wearing a bikini.  In fact, you’re seeing a lot less than if I were in a bikini.

Also, this photo was taken at home, where I freely whip my boobs out to feed my child (quelle horreur!) without any sort of discretion.

When I nurse in public, it looks a lot more like this:

Or like this:

Or, hey, here’s one more:

xmasfam02-001

And on the topic of nursing in public (affectionately referred to as NIP)… I will continue to do it unapologetically.  I have nursed Margot in restaurants, walking through a store, on the train, anywhere and everywhere.  If I excused myself to a private space every time Margot wanted to eat I would never be in public.  And I also do it without a cover.  To me, it’s much easier (and a lot more discreet) to just lift up my shirt and latch her on at the first sign that she wants to eat.  In defense of NIP, I have often seen this quote “If you’re offended by public breastfeeding, you’re looking too closely.”  I think that really proved true this weekend when I was nursing Margot in the middle of Bryant Park and, even though she kept popping off to look around at the tree and the skaters and the birds flying past, not one person paid any attention to us.

Most of the time, people don’t even notice that I’m feeding her.  On Christmas morning we were opening presents and my grandma commented how quiet Margot was being and asked if she was asleep.  I said, “Nope, she’s eating!”  That’s the thing about a nursing baby. A nursing baby is quiet and content.  I would rather have a happy baby and risk having someone catch a glimpse of my nipple than have a screaming baby and guarantee that everyone will be looking at me.

If the fact that I am using my breasts for their intended purpose makes you uncomfortable I am honestly sorry.  I am sorry that you can not see the value of what I am doing for my child.  I am sorry that you can not let go of your sexual feelings about breasts.  I am sorry that you were not raised in a society that values and accepts normal human behavior.  But… I am guessing that if you are someone who is that uncomfortable… you probably didn’t make it this far into my post… so I’m sorry for that, too.

I bet I lost the last hangers-on at my first use of the word “nipple.”

Well, there it is… my explanation of why I nurse my baby in front of friends, family and strangers alike and why I will continue to post boobie pictures on Instagram and on this blog.

In closing, here are some helpful tips from Skeptical Mothering:

nip

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6 thoughts on “Nursling

  1. Do it!! Well obviously you know that I completely agree with you. I will admit, there have been a couple of times that I have been in public (or on a subway train) when a woman has unceremoniously taken a boob out to feed her child, and I was slightly taken aback – not at all by the act of breastfeeding, but by my own inexperience with close range nudity! Usually its just crazy homeless people. Haha. I NEVER judged those women though! That’s what I don’t get. I hope that I can take a page from your collective “books” and get over my extreme modesty when the time comes. 🙂

    • Oh, Ellen! It is so nice to have support, even though it’s coming from the choir!

      I also hope you are able to feel comfortable nursing in public, not because my way is the RIGHT way, but because I have felt such joy being able to share the world with my baby girl and I don’t feel I would be able to share it with her as freely if we didn’t NIP. I also hope for EVERY mother that she feels comfortable feeding her baby whenever, wherever and however SHE feels comfortable.

      Whether it be on the subway with her full boob out or in a private corner under a nursing cover… The best way to feed a baby is the way that works for Mama and baby.

  2. Well said babe. Do you remember me telling you the story about the time mom and I were having dinner at the base in Italy and a mom sitting at the next table started breastfeeding her baby? After a minute or so the Base Vice Commander (who was sitting close to us, but just out of earshot of the mom) called over the waiter and directed him to ask the lady to take her baby to the ladies room. Seeing as the VC is the second highest ranking officer on the base the waiter went right over to the lady and advised her the the VC requested she take her baby to ladies room. The mom and baby didn’t miss a beat. Without any hesitation she told the waiter “please tell the Col that when he eats his dinner in the bathroom, my baby will eat her’s in the bathroom.” The baby went on eating and the VC learned a lesson about messing with a mon and her baby.

    • Thank you, Daddy!!

      The best thing in the world is having a supportive family!

      And I love that story! Was it an Italian woman?? That seems to me like the kind of thing Nana would have done!

      • Nope it was an American civilian wife. And when the Col called her military husband into his office to chew him out about his wife’s behavior. The Sgt respectfully told the Vice Commander “he fully supported his wife’s actions”. Does sound like Nana. The only difference is that Nana would have been a little less diplomatic. Like me she was never one to hold back.

  3. Pingback: Hug a Doula | The Amazing Moores

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