Are You Mom Enough? Yes, I Am!
The question was recently asked on the cover of Time Magazine, “Are you Mom enough?” The illustration on the cover was of a mother breastfeeding her 3 year old son. I found this refreshing to say the least! An article actually celebrating motherhood!
Motherhood to me was not just a small portion of my life. It was my life for many years! I spent the better portion of my life either pregnant, breastfeeding, or both. From 1983-2006 I was in the mother mode. It was rare if I had a month or two that I was not doing one or the other of those mothering tasks.
Over the years I birthed eight beautiful children into this world, and nursed each of them until they weaned on their own, some with more encouragement than others! God said, “Be fruitful and multiply” and I took Him at His word! The shortest time period I nursed a baby was 9 months. I got pregnant again and the baby weaned himself at that time. The longest I’ve nursed a baby was 5+ years and it was the most stressful and precious time in my life. He was my last child and I enjoyed every minute of it. I still miss those days sometimes, when I could make everything all better just by cuddling and nursing my children. Life is much tougher, for both them and me, now that their grown up.
And don’t think that my life was easy and that I didn’t need to work, and that I had a supportive husband, and all that! For many of those years I was in a domestic violence relationship, and during the time just before having my last two children, I had entered college again after being a stay-at-home Mom for many years – Just in-case I had to support my family.
I was three months pregnant with my seventh child when I entered school again and arranged my classes around my nursing schedule when I had the baby. I took two morning classes, went home for lunch to nurse the baby, and then took an afternoon class. The baby never missed a nursing and I managed to get through my undergraduate degree. Three years later, just as I was finishing that degree, I got pregnant again and managed to nurse that one through night classes for my graduate degree. After the last baby was born I left my husband due to continued domestic abuse.
So as you can see, no, I didn’t have it easy, my husband wasn’t very supportive, and I did need an income. But motherhood was and still is my priority! It’s how God designed us mothers to be. Work is sometimes necessary in the fallen world that we live in, but you can’t tell me, “I can’t nurse my baby, because I have to work.” Most employers will allow you the time you need to pump your milk or breastfeed your baby, but if not, you can always take a lunch break like I did and either go to your baby or have someone meet you with your baby if that would save time.
In any case, motherhood should be our priority, at least in the years when our children need us the most. Then if we need to focus on other parts of our lives we can. I remember pulling a few all-nighters, trying to finish a college paper on schedule, while nursing a baby in one arm and typing with the other hand. This was not ideal, but necessary at the time. And my baby still got what he needed from me! So if you ask me the question, “Are you Mom enough?” I’d smile a knowing smile, and proudly say, “Yes, I am!”
Mom of 8: Parenting Little People
June 29, 2012
- Yes. I am Mom Enough. (insanityofmotherhood.com)
- We Need to Support Moms Who Breastfeed, Not Shame Them (colorlines.com)
- Motherhood: It’s Not a Competition (wosushi.wordpress.com)
- Extended Breastfeeding: A Stigmatizing Term (singlemomontherun.com)
- We’re All Mom Enough (blogher.com)
- I am Mom Enough!!! (momphotographer.wordpress.com)