Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Support Topless Women

Despite the rather risque title, this is all about rights for breastfeeding women, a topic near and dear to me. I've breastfed both kids in public without any issue, but if I had gotten harassed, I would definitely give these ignorant and intolerant people a piece of my mind. Ilker of The Thinking Blog has created this banner and other links to this movement. Finally, Ilker put up an interesting post, Men Can Breastfeed. OK, this concept is a bit creepy to me, but still interesting (removed links 12/20 as they don't exist anymore).

I've gone back through the archives and labeled all my posts involving breastfeeding as well, although I'm trying to prevent label overload. Here are some more bits of my breastfeeding stories. People ask whether the La Leche League pushed me into it, but I never spoke with them at all. Apparently, some of their guerrilla tactics scare some people. After making it through the first excruciating month (I will spare the details), I was completely hooked. 

I weaned Adam at 16 months because we wanted to try for another child and thought it would be easier to conceive and easier on me to feed only one baby at a time. Doug said it wasn't so much weaning Adam and weaning me because I was so attached to it. I did it slowly, cutting down to one nighttime feeding and finally putting him to sleep without it. He took to it fine, and after the first week where my breasts were exploding, I gave him one last feeding and that was the end of that. It took nearly a year to finally conceive Dova, so I didn't actually have to stop at that point. 

For Dova, since she was our last child, I was determined to breastfeed until we were both satisfied and wean by her second birthday at the latest. During my father's last months in 2005, it became increasing hard to keep up the breastfeeding because I couldn't take her with me on my weekly trips to NY (toddlers and 4 hour car rides don't mix well, let alone hospitals). I ended up making day trips by myself, driving 450 miles a day, just so that I could come back to nurse her. I often wonder if I would have been able to spend more time with my father in his last days if I hadn't been nursing (wouldn't have made a difference in the will aftermath, but that's another story). At 23 months, only a couple weeks after my father passed, we stopped nursing. I was a little sad, and she did ask for "other side" for a couple months afterwards but not everyday, and was OK about becoming a big girl. When she fell asleep, she would still purse her lips and make a suckling sound, which I found to be so sweet. To this day, at 3 1/2, she still sometimes makes the suckling sound when she sleeps, forever my baby.

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