Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Modesty is not always the best policy

Recently, I "liked" the facebook group Nursing, a non-profit group started by two mommy-bloggers who were passionate about normalizing breastfeeding in our society and have taken to Nursing In Public, or N.I.P to forge their cause. I have to say, this group keeps their facebook page really engaging because they are always posting interesting, fun and inspiring information about nursing in public. Or at least it is to me as a nursing mom. I have to say, I have always nursed Elisabeth under a nursing cover if I breastfed in public. But I must admit that when she was a newborn, I would sometimes go to the car and breastfeed her because I wasn't confident in my ability to nurse her without flashing someone; mainly because we were both still getting used to our breastfeeding realtionship. But as she got older, it got much easier and before I knew it, I was a pro at how to maneuver her and the cover without an inch of skin showing. However, now that she is getting older and more squirmy under that cover, I have now reverted back to our first days and fear that I will expose myself at some point in the near future.

I have to say, this group has given me some new found courage to just say to hell with the cover next time I have to nurse her in public. This is HUGE for me, because while I see breastfeeding as totally natural, beautiful and something I wish for every mother to experience with her baby, I'm just a modest person in general. You'll never see me wearing revealing clothing or a short skirt or shorts; I barely wear heals anymore (mainly because I started a love affair with ballet flats and flip-flops when I was pregnant and have never looked back). So it will take a lot for me to make this leap, which I'm still wrangling with in my head. To help me make this jump, I've decided to attend the "Keep Austin Breastfeeding" flashmob on August 1st, which is also World Breastfeeding Day. It's basically a choreographed public nursing display to make a statement about breastfeeding. I figure this might help me ease into it. Plus, I hope to meet other moms who either are in the same boat as me or have been doing this like it's 2nd nature (or... just natural). After all, breastfeeding in public is only taboo in the U.S. and is viewed as perfectly normal, even expected in many other countries, including Western Europe. Something I keep reminding myself as I work up the courage leading up to the 1st. So wish me luck and I'll be sure to report back on the event.