I AM Mom Enough!

Please welcome guest blogger, Cassidy June, one of my most favorite breastfeeding mamas!  Cassidy, thanks for sharing your story with us at the San Diego Breastfeeding Center.  Here's to all of the amazing moms out there, doing a fantastic job being the BEST mom they can be!

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Forgive me while I go on my soapbox for just one moment. It's a few days after Mother's Day and I need to get something off my chest...and it's about the breast.

Time magazine. "Are you mom enough? Why attachment parenting drives some mothers to extremes..."

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In the recent Time magazine, L.A. mom Jamie Grumet is pictured nursing her son. 

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A mom nursing her (gasp) 3 year old son...

She chose to breastfeed, her son hasn't weaned yet, and as a parent who has the right to make these kind of decisions…she’s ok with that. So what’s the big deal?

Maybe breastfeeding until your child is this age is not for everyone. That's fine. Breastfeeding in general is not for everyone, and does not always work out. That's fine too! Thank goodness we live in a day where supplementation or replacement is available.

My issue, is with the negative outlook and publicity that breastfeeding is getting as of late. More often than not, I'm getting asked the question, "so when are you going to stop breastfeeding?" No one ever comments on how great it is, that although tough at times, I'm still breastfeeding. No, rather, let's all focus on when I'm going to take the babe off the boob.

Whether it's about nursing in public, breastpumps and airport security, or breastfeeding past the age of one...the boob and the babe are in the news, and not in a positive way. Don’t even get me started on Whoopi!

Breastfeeding is not always easy, and thank goodness I had a supportive husband and resources that allowed me to get through the tough parts so that I could continue to do so. We should be supporting new moms during this delicate time in their motherhood journey, not telling them to “cover up” or when to wean their child from the breast.

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I’m a breastfeeding mom and I don’t care who knows it. I love the way Rylie looks up at me when I nurse her, plays with my face, and smiles when I munch on her little fingers. I love knowing that every little roll on her arms and thighs has come from something no one else can give her but me. I even love when she bites, and I tell her "ouchie Rylie," and she looks up at me with the most confused and curious look on her face. I love when I get home from work and she's just had a bottle, but all she wants to do is nurse because it's her way of feeling reconnected. I love the way she looks at other people who are talking while we nurse, like "Um. Hello? Can't you see mommy and I are busy here?"

In fact, when the day comes that she will be ready to wean from my breast, I will cry. I will be proud of her for becoming such a big girl, but it will be hard for me. So the last thing I need, is to feel rushed to stop something that feels so right.

Attachment parenting. Another topic that gets a bad rap. What is so horrifying about the parent that wants to feel close to their child? Dr. Sears has become titled the attachment parenting guru, and he encourages the 7 B's:

  • bonding right after birth (such as practicing skin to skin contact), 
  • breastfeeding (when you can), 
  • babywearing
  • bedding close to your baby and co-sleeping
  • belief in the language value of your baby's cry (which means going to your baby when you feel in your gut that it's the right thing to do, which usually goes against the "cry it out" method),
  • staying away from baby trainers (such as "the cry it out method" or the idea that your baby is trying to manipulate you), and 
  • balance (hey, you gotta take care of yourself too). 

I'd like to think I practice my own style of attachment parenting. I'm not perfect, I strive to be good enough, and I do my best to provide Rylie with the love and security she would need in order to feel brave enough to explore the world.

So am I "mom enough?" I hope I am.

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Ok...I'm getting off my soapbox now. Happy Mother's day to all the mommy's out there! Especially mine. She has given me the best example of how to be "MOM ENOUGH." I love you mom :)