Scrolling through my tablet to choose my May 6 ‘smile’ picture for Britmums’ ‘#snaphappybritmums a photo a day on Instagram’, I stumbled upon some pictures I took a while ago. These are rare pictures for me; I don’t really do selfies. The ‘smile’ picture I chose really made me smile; on my face and in my heart. 🙂
It took me back to the first time I allowed my son to roam around in a park. I got him out of the buggy and let him ‘go’. He went alright … slowly at first, taking in the expanse before him … then fast, faster, and even more.
As expected, he needed a breastfeeding break after a while. There were a few people around and I wasn’t sure what to do.
After some hesitation, I decided to sit on one end of the bench nearest to us. I put Precious Sparkle on my knees and we discreetly (thanks to my Frugi breastfeeding dress and Primark comfy overall) latched. I hoped the woman on the other end of the bench didn’t mind but I refused to worry about it. I must say I was relieved to find out she was also a mum; her children ran to her soon after we sat down.
Precious Sparkle fed to his heart’s content; moving his hands here and there … patting my chest, touching my nose, occasionally tugging at my dress etc. He even shuffled a few times on my knees; his legs seemed to have a mind of their own. I had to keep him close and hold on to the top of my dress some of the time, to avoid unwanted exposure.
We blissfully gazed at each other a few times, sending vibes of sweetness and love beyond words to our hearts; oblivious to the world around us. Noticing some passersby and the pigeons around reminded me about where we were; and after a while Precious Sparkle was ready to play again.
I smiled then and I’m smiling in my heart now for many reasons. We’ve now been breastfeeding for over 14 months and I sometimes pinch myself. Even as I write now, emotions swell through my being … ‘WE MADE IT’, I feel like shouting from the rooftop; ‘WE ARE ACTUALLY MAKING IT, ALRIGHT’! If you know my breastfeeding journey, you’ll understand; and one day soon, I’ll write about it. I of course have so many people to thank for helping us MAKE IT this far.
I smile because if you told me over a year ago that we’ll still be going strong in our breastfeeding relationship, I wouldn’t have believed you. I smile because I refused to give up trying despite family, friends, and medical professionals telling me it’s okay to stop in those early months of Precious Sparkle’s life. I smile because I chose not to moderate my breastfeeding expectations despite all the reasons to. I smile because I chose to continue pressing towards my breastfeeding goal though it didn’t seem achievable for many months. I smile because of answered prayers. I smile because I feel privileged to still be breastfeeding. I smile because WE MADE IT.
I’ve come a long way when it comes to nursing in public (NIP); I am more confident about it being okay. I don’t have to apologise to anyone about meeting my child’s needs, I don’t have to let my baby cry whilst trying to find a secluded (and usually uncomfortable place) to fill his tummy. If my child is hungry, I can feed him with the food I’ve got … my mummy’s milk is available on demand and that’s fantastic. Breastfeeding in a park is as normal as eating in a park; because it is eating in a park.
What do you think about breastfeeding in public?