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That one day that I was at IKEA and saw hundreds of breastfeeding mothers.

Dear Hands-Free Breastfeeding Mom that I saw in IKEA,
Breastfeeding awareness month.Thirsties
You might have noticed me staring at you. It wasn't because I was appalled that you were feeding your baby while walking around the living room showroom. It wasn't because I thought that what you were doing was inappropriate either. It was because of one thing and one thing only: I admire your ability to breastfeed your child without having to use your hands. You see, I would love nothing more than to do a little handsfree breastfeeding the next time I breastfeed a child. I just can't seem to get the knack of it though.  You could say that I'm blessed (or cursed, depends on who you're asking) with a large bosom, and the British rock band, Cornershop, did say that everyone needs a bosom for a pillow, but it makes it exceedingly difficult to mimic your handsfree skills while wandering around IKEA. I am just amazed by how effortlessly you nursed your baby, covered with a delicate gray shawl, walking about the showroom. It was discreet and it was beautiful. It actually made me want to another another baby, which is a good thing.


Me, Bert

While my family and I were shopping for pillows at IKEA today I saw so many women breastfeeding their babies in public. Some were sitting on benches with breastfeeding covers. Some were wandering around the store; some were discreetly covered by a shawl and one woman I saw had a cami on and that was it. And one woman came into the family restroom I was in changing my daughter's cloth diaper to sit in a comfy leather chair and nourish her baby.

image of outdoors
I walked about the store with a sense of pride. These women are my people. They know what it's like to not only give physically give their bodies to growing and sustaining another life for at the most 40 weeks. They understand what it's like to continue sharing their body with a child ensuring he grows healthy and strong. Maybe I'm hyper aware of public breastfeeding because August is National Breastfeeding Awareness month and there have been a few breastfeeding in public debates on the morning network shows? Whatever the case, on this particular Sunday afternoon, IKEA was surrounded with beautiful women breastfeeding their babes confidently. That right there, being able to feed your child publicly in confidence, is what this awareness month is about.

On a lighter note, can you breastfeed your baby without your hands? What's your secret? I want to make this happen next time around!

Special thanks to the beautiful mothers who shared their breastfeeding pictures with me: Shannon, Erica, Karine, Kim & Meg.

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  • I can’t do hands free but I nurse in public all the time sans cover. I have a hard time breathing under a cover so I don’t expect my baby too. Nobody has ever said anything or given me a dirty look.

    Casey on
  • Love this post. I too have a “large bosom” and can’t for the life of me figure out how people nurse hands free. I’ve nursed DS in his Ergo once, but that was no small feat for me. In the end I just prefer to sit somewhere and feed my little guy. My favorite place to nurse him in public is on the Belmont Pier. We go there after swim class and it is so peaceful and nice. But really I’ll feed my little guy anywhere, from a restaurant, to the museum, to an airplane. That’s what’s great about breast feeding, you don’t need anything but yourself to feed your baby!

    Leela R. on
  • I was never able to be hands-free but it’s amazing to see women do it!

    Michelle Lee on
  • I cannot nurse hands free! I would love to know the secret! Maybe a different carrier or bigger boobs! LOL! I need all hands on deck!

    Jeannette on
  • I can nurse hands free when we are lying down. I can almost do it hands free in the Moby wrap, need a little more practice. ;) Hoping that we can go hands free when he gets bigger. (he is almost 3 months, so still kind of little)

    Stephanie B on

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