I remember when I was pregnant, sitting in a café and observing a mother with her child. Why couldn’t she put him down for a moment, make an order then get back to it? I decided to go with breastfeeding – I had a biological urge, and couldn’t be bothered with sterilising bottles.
She was breastfeeding him – he may have been eight or nine months old – and kept him latched on while she walked to the counter to order a coffee. It started off brilliantly, then got tough (I had recurrent mastitis) and then my daughter and I settled into a nice routine.
But, especially as a girl, it's hard not to feel self-conscious when exercising in the gym or jogging down the street- tight exercise clothing only accentuates the bulges, and bumping into acquaintances while makeup-free and panting and sweating profusely can be intimidating or embarrassing for many.
They were having a nice calm moment together, feeding, why should she unlatch him?
And I realised that my initial judgment had stemmed from society’s ideas about women’s bodies, breasts and about motherhood in general. It was a source of nourishment and comfort for her. But I waited until she was 10 months and I was returning to work before introducing formula.
He loves to play with my stomach fat while suckling.
And again, it’s a lovely way to bond and have some down time.