Tuesday, May 1

Breastfeeding in the (early) 21st Century

The other night I was nursing Monkey before bed and I came to the realization that breastfeeding, the activity itself, isn't really designed for our modern 21st century society.

Now don't get me wrong, I fully support breastfeeding and think it's something every mom.newborn should at least try; but let's think about this for a minute.  Shall we?

While I'm nursing him, a ideas where running through my head of all the "have to dos" and "should be doing" chores/jobs/activities what have you.  I just kept fighting with myself to turn off my brain and relax.  But that was of no use; so then I started to make lists, in my head, of things I should write down once we were done.  You see, I am not good at multitasking while breastfeeding; at least not at this stage.  When he was a newborn I could watch TV, answer e-mails and talk on the phone (and eat and walk around) all while nursing.  Now a days he gets so easily distracted that should I try any of those activities while nursing he would want to "help".

This is not to say nursing him when he was younger was easier or better designed for the 21st century.  Nursing a year plus ago was a time consuming activity.  What with feedings every 2 hours or so, it was a miracle I even had a chance to shower.

In this day and place we live in a get up and go "instant gratification" society.  We expect to get what we want when we want it and we don't want to wait for it.  Because of this we expect more from ourselves.  As mother's we feel like we need to be super human and fit 30 hours worth of stuff into a 24 hour day.  When you're taking time to stop and nurse your baby; you are "slowed down" considerably.  I think you'd be hard pressed to find a nursing mom who didn't once think "if I just gave him a bottle instead I could start working on X Y or Z."

I think this a big hurdle we need to overcome as a society if we're going to promote increased and longer breastfeeding rates.  This is a big mind shift, but one that we can accomplish, one mom at a time, one day at a time... and eventually our society will be more breastfeeding friendly.

While a great sayings for all parents, I think this holds very true for breastfeeding mom's -
as cleaning, and everything else, often times needs to wait as you nurse your child.

1 comments:

stephanie pou said...
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