I know that in my profile I mention that one of my three jobs is counseling breastfeeding moms. Between jobs, I have also been doing quite a bit of nonproductive blog surfing as a response to my post "Blogging about Blogging." I decided that if I ever want to gain a following as a blogger, I should probably be doing a bit more following of my own. Where to start? How about women whose interests are similar to mine? So, I searched profiles that mentioned breastfeeding. Inevitably, almost every mom who stated an interest in breastfeeding also incorporated buzzwords like "attachment parenting," "baby wearing," and "veganism." This is the part where I interrupt my current stream of thought for a disclaimer: please do not stone me for what I am about to say. I think these are great, altruistic mothers. They are clearly very involved and concerned parents. I do not relate to them.
I have heard the phrase "attachment parenting" before, but I have never really investigated what all "attachment parenting" entails. If it means having a two-year-old who has to touch you all night and drink a sippy cup while you're sleeping, count me in. If it means that you have to like it and admit that it stems from anything other than your parental apathy, count me out. My two-year-old still sleeps with me because I'm too darn lazy to get up in the night and deal with his tantrums. Period. End of story.
My kids don't eat organic foods and I have to admit there are some nights when they have had Pringles and fruit snacks for dinner. They eat a lot of candy on Halloween, too. They like McDonald's chicken nuggets. I guess I'm not in the "organic foods/ vegan" mom category, as so many breastfeeding moms seem to be.
I'm not sure about the term "baby-wearing" either. I am assuming it has something to do with slings. I used one once: when I took my 6 week old to Disneyland. (By the way, did you know, the "It's a Small World" ride is a great place to breastfeed? But I digress). I think I might be into baby wearing, but not in the sling sense. There is generally a baby attached to my arm, and often another trying to climb my leg. Once again, not my favorite situation.
I don't reuse plastic grocery bags, bake wholegrain bread, or knit. I probably won't storm a business rumored to have employed someone who gave a breastfeeding mom a dirty look. I am comfortable breastfeeding in public, but I wasn't at first. I do own a Shu Uemura eyelash curler (which I use daily); I love how I look in heels. I would carry a Coach bag. I am even guilty of reading BabyWise (don't gasp. Once again, I was much too apathetic for Ezzo-ism).
Sterotypes aside, I think sometimes women choose not to breastfeed because they feel they don't fit "the mold." In my line of work, I hear all too often, "I'm afraid to breastfeed; I'm just a teenage mom." Or, "I'm not sure I can breastfeed; no one in my family could." Breastfeeding extends beyond stereotypes and race. For me, it's not about politics. It is about uniting mother with child and mother with mother. I am a woman and a mom, so I breastfeed.