Monday, September 03, 2007

I'm lucky to have the family and friends I do.

I've noticed a lot of discussion lately about two subjects that are rather important to me, Breastfeeding and Adoption. Maybe I was just lucky when I was born into my family, but neither of these subjects has ever been an issue. My friends have never been anything but supportive. Even 28 years ago, when I was breastfeeding Christopher, I never ran into anyone who told me to cover up, or that I shouldn't do that in public. Of course I wasn't out in public all that often, but if my baby needed to eat and we were out, I nursed him. Maybe I was more comfortable, or my clothing fit looser, or something because I don't think anyone noticed when I'd sit somewhere quiet and nurse. When it was cold out I might cover up with a blanket, but not in the heat. Christopher was born in May, I nursed him for just over a year, so we had our fair share of warm weather. I don't remember being worried about offending other people, or looking for someplace to nurse where others wouldn't see me, but maybe I did at least subconsciously. I know that I nursed in front of family members because I can remember talking to my little cousin and telling her what I was doing. Well actually she asked me "What is he doing?" LOL

I never ran into the over zealous breastfeeding women after The Boy came along. Since I didn't give birth to him and didn't know that I could do something to start lactation, I had to feed him formula. I've heard of women who have been actually yelled at for giving their babies bottles. Again I was lucky because I never ran into any of them. I can see both sides of this issue, because I've been there. It is better for a baby to be breastfed if at all possible, however it isn't condemning a child to ill health if for some reason the Mother can't breastfeed. Some people will say that using formula is the lazy way, but for me it would have been easier to breastfeed, I hated getting up in the middle of the night to make a bottle. Picking him up, he slept right next to me in a bassinet, and latching him on would have been so much more relaxing. Some Mom's don't have it that easy, I realise that, and I really respect their decision to continue nursing even through the pain and other problems.

I've also read discussions recently about adoption. That people still feel that it should be kept secret, that there is some shame in it somehow. Again, I've been lucky. My family and friends are all very supportive of adoption. No one seems to feel that adopted children are second best, or that they aren't "really" part of the family. I know that I love The Boy as much as I love Christopher and Allen. I love them each differently, of course, because they are all very different people. But I do love them all just as much as I love the others. I love all 5 of my brother Cody's kids, and think of them as family. Some of them are adopted, but that doesn't matter to me, or to the rest of our family.

So, I've been lucky. I haven't had to face the people who would try to shame me for my decisions. I haven't had to defend my choices or describe the circumstances that led to our situation. I am very grateful for that. I am also very grateful for my family and friends who have always been supportive of me. (Even though I didn't know some of my friends today back when Christopher and Allen were babies, the friends I had then were supportive and the friends I have now are supportive. Thanks you guys!)

No comments: