Saturday, January 5, 2013

I've never been told to put my boobs away

There is no such thing as public opinion, only published opinion. Winston Churchill

Last night I read this article.

In short, a woman was recently asked to leave a store because she was breastfeeding.

At first, I liked the article, she did a very good job at understanding, not only the mother, but also the assistant manager of the store who is now probably in a lot of trouble for her actions.

But then she started dissing my province.

Actually her exact words were "Our province isn’t breastfeeding friendly."

Now I'm not interested in attacking her opinion, because as I said, she has some valid points. But I have to say, grouping every Nova Scotian into a "backwater boob-phobia" category, based on one person's actions is a little harsh.

I am Nova Scotian. I breastfeed my child. In public. Where ever, whenever.

I don't do it as a protest.

I don't do it to shove it in people's face that they should accept me and my life choices.

 I don't do it because I'm a  looking for a way to showcase my post pregnancy body (Heidi Klum I am not).

I do it because I don't have time to stop and sit and find a quiet out of the way place to feed my child. I'm too damn busy being a Mom.

And if I've learned anything in the past four months, it is that, if you can manage to do two (or three or five or ten) things at once without endangering yourself or your child, you better damn well do it, or it may not get done.

So I do what needs to get done. And I'm proud to say, that no one has ever told me to stop. Or acted like I was doing anything vulgar.

While I am sad this mother had to feel embarrassed and harassed, I don't want the whole province blamed for it.

Nothing dramatic has ever happened while I have nursed my son publicly. And if you've ever read any post on this blog, you would know, that if there is a way to screw something up, I usually figure out how to do it.

 This year I nursed while Christmas shopping. In fact, in Sears I did exactly what this other mother did.

I nursed my little Fuss-Bucket under my Stronger Half's large winter jacket.

 I didn't ask for a chair, as we were in a furniture store, and we were shopping for furniture, so I just sat in every recliner without asking.

In fact, instead of asking me to leave, one wise salesmen actually came up to me to talk to me ABOUT newborns... he has a daughter who works at the hospital.

 He was so friendly, we bought the damn chair from him.

Then when I finished feeding, and Bucket threw up on me, instead of people thinking it was gross or unsanitary or indecent, they just laughed politely at my misfortune of being covered in baby puke (or maybe they laughed because I sarcastically thanked my child for helping me smell bad for the rest of the day).

I nursed all day in public.

The only time any attention was even called to the fact that I was nursing, was in Babies-R-Us.

I was nursing, but also needed to find a new diaper bag. So I grabbed three or four off the shelf, and sat down in one of their display rockers to rifle through the bags and see if any of them were worth the insane amount they expect you to pay for them.

As I hauled out the stuffing of each bag (with one hand -not only do you need to learn multitask, but you also need to do it with less limbs than you used to have available) and tried to shove my things in it (to test which one was big enough, not to shoplift) a grandmother, mother and baby walk by.

The grandmother commented to the mother "See, she can do it"

I looked up and smiled, not sure if I was being called out for hanging out on the display furniture, tearing apart merchandise before purchasing or simply not relegating myself to the "family room" to nurse.

Babies-R-Us does have a beautiful "family room" to nurse in. It's clean, set up with comfy chairs, and seems like a neat spot to hang out.

Why wasn't I there?? Because I had one day to get my shopping done, and when I tried to get in that room to change Bucket's diaper, it was locked.

I didn't have the time or energy to go find a worker to unlock it for me, let alone go sit back there for 20 minutes while I could be doing something productive.

 In the end, I purchased a bag, my child was fed, and happy, and nobody went blind from seeing me nurse in public.

 And nobody acted like they would go blind if I did it again.

 Thank you Nova Scotians, for not making life any harder than it already is on a stressed out, time crunched, constantly judged, sleep deprived, busy mom who is just trying to live her life.

1 comment: