Mothers Before Me: Lessons for a New Life.

Welcome to The Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival! This post was written as part of The Breastfeeding Cafe's Carnival. For more info on the Breastfeeding Cafe, go to www.breastfeedingcafe.wordpress.com. For more info on the Carnival or if you want to participate, contact Claire at clindstrom2 {at} gmail {dot} com. Today's post is about how the mothers before you influenced your choice to breastfeed. Please read the other blogs in today's carnival listed below and check back for more posts July 18th through the 31st!


I know that I was breastfed as an infant. For all of six weeks. And then my mother had an acute case of appendicitis and had to have surgery and was told she could no longer nurse me. This was in 1972 and she was a 21-year-old new wife, new mom and a person who was not, nor has ever been one to question the wisdom of her doctors. And that was the end of our breastfeeding relationship.

She had three more children in quick succession after me and all three of them were breastfed for at least 6 months each, if not longer. We lived in the country, my dad was a ranch hand on a cattle farm and I guess if it was good enough for the cows and horses then it was good enough for the kids! And we were kind of dirt poor too and that formula stuff was more than we could realistically afford!

I mostly remember seeing my youngest brother nurse. I was four years old when he was born and I remember my mom always saying that Desmond was born on the breast and never left it! I also have a very clear image of my mother giving myself and my two younger brothers baths together and "squirting" us with her milk. Oh, don't make faces, it was a fun bath time game back then!

To be perfectly honest aside from my own mother, I don't remember seeing other mothers nursing while I was growing up. I was born in the early 70's and perhaps the big breastfeeding resurgence of the late 1970s and 1980s had not hit our local hospitals yet, or maybe the fiasco of formula marketing that Nestle and other formula manufacturers had unleashed on third world countries was not yet common knowledge. Whatever the case and reasons for it, breastfeeding was just not something that I saw a lot of, nor was it something that was talked about either.

I don't think that I thought much about breastfeeding or really started to notice whether or not people were indeed doing it until I was pregnant with my first child. It was a complicated pregnancy with a few months of bedrest and a guaranteed premature delivery and I had a lot of time to read about what I needed to do to ensure a healthy and strong baby. Breastfeeding was number ONE on that list!

Unfortunately, no amount of reading about breastfeeding can ever fully prepare you for the full experience itself. And I have to say that it wasn't until I met other committed breastfeeding mothers at my local La Leche League and SAW for myself how normal and wonderful and amazing of an experience it truly could be, that I fully appreciated how important it is for all women, of all ages, to SEE for themselves breastfeeding in action and know that it is a normal and incredibly awesome way to nurture and nourish a child.

Today the kids and I had lunch with a good friend, her 4-year-old daughter and her 8-week old little baby girl. As we were all getting ready to leave the baby woke up and started to get all fussy and was full on crying by the time we made it to our respective cars. My two and a half year old {nursling} daughter turned and said to me, "Mommy, Baby P is hungry and needs to nurse on her mommy's boobies."

'Nuff said.

My job is done.

Natasha~

"Be the change you want to see in the world."

~Mahatma Ghandi


Here are more posts by the Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival participants! Check back because more will be added throughout the day.

happy things...

You know those days when you just need to escape? When all you can think about is getting away from the never-ending piles of laundry, the incessant whining, the fighting over whose sandwich is bigger (neither one EVER IS by the way!!), the toys that YOU end up cleaning up day after day and the general chaos of life? I had one of those days yesterday. And as soon as my husband came home I told him that I would be leaving after dinner for some ME time! He leaned over, gave me a kiss and said "OK Dear". It must have been written all over my face.

So escape I did, to the cavernous, anonymous, fabulous confines of West Edmonton Mall. Walking through the mall ALL BY MYSELF is a treat in and of itself and getting to go and browse nonchalantly in my favourite stores almost makes me giddy!

Yesterday I indulged in a few things that really do make me happy and I thought I would share them with you ('cause they may make you happy one day too!)

  • The Benefit Brow Bar at Murale. This concept is genius. No appointment necessary, professional esthetician, super clean environment, and you are in and out in under 20 minutes. And seriously, I don't know what it is, but having nicely shaped and clean eyebrows just feels GOOD.
  • And while at Murale, Jackie (the wonderful esthetician at the WEM location) introduced me to the new Benefit Cosmetics skincare line. I immediately fell in love with ALL of it. The packaging is lovely (yes, this matters!), the product line is free of parabens and sulphates and this refined finish facial polish is something every mama needs to feel all dewy and gorgeous (I used it this morning and am super impressed with how my skin feels and looks!!) The icing on the cake is that this stuff all smells absolutely divine and I ended up getting the toner and moisturizer too!
  • Anthropologie. Really Mamas, need I say more? Okay, I will. I love, love, LOVE this store. I feel like I can buy clothes there that are made to fit real women, do not make me feel like a wannabe pop star and are of a quality that I appreciate. I knew this top was for me the minute I saw it. It is my GREEN and well, green is a happy color for me!

Tuesdays are also happy days for me. My amazing babysitter comes first thing in the morning and I get to go for a grueling great workout with the fabulous Jessica at Infinite Fusion. We are doing a whole lot of Pilates Reformer workouts lately and let me tell you, these are some killer sessions! I highly recommend you try a class or a personal session and see for yourself.

Today was also a happy day for me because I received a shipment for Natural Urban Mamas and I am like a kid on Christmas morning when new product arrives!! In today's box were the wonderful Dolcino Woven Wraps and I am one happy, happy kid today!! I am so glad that I decided to bring in these baby carriers. They are 100% organic cotton, are at a decent price point for a woven wrap and they are the perfect wrap for beginners too, with different colored rails (sides) and tapered ends for easy tying. I rushed home with the box after I picked it up from the post office and immediately wrapped my 30 pound 2-year-old in one! And it is GREEN too!!

One more happy thing for me is a great latte and my all time favourite is the one that the girls make me at Cafe O'Play. This wonderful cafe and play place has become my very own 'Cheers' of motherhood. I am a regular and today I actually told Tava (awesome, sweet, barista extraordinaire) that I would have 'the usual' and by usual I meant the absolutely delicious Yummy Mummy latte. And now you can also have it as a blended latte for summertime. I like it so much, that I will even go to the cafe without the kids just to sit, sip and get a bit of work done too!

So there you have it. My happy places, happy things and my happy color. Please remember to take care of yourselves mamas and find your HAPPY on a regular basis. Remember the mantra....."Happy Mama, no More DRAMA!!"

Happily,

Natasha~

Be glad there's one place in the world Where everybody knows your name, And they're always glad you came; You want to go where people know, People are all the same; You want to go where everybody knows your name.

~Cheers Theme Song~