By Shannon O’Donnell
“Courage is the price life exacts for granting peace.” It’s one of my favorite quotes, written by Amelia Earhart. This quote has come to mean a lot to me in many areas of my life, including breastfeeding (and for that matter, parenting in general).
The first several months of breastfeeding were very difficult for me – I had to muster up courage (ok, willingness) every day to continue when I wanted to quit. Two and a half years later I got pregnant with my second baby, and I was still breastfeeding my first; again, I had to muster up courage to continue breastfeeding when everyone around me was telling me to stop. I continued nursing and successfully tandem breastfed for a year after my second child was born. This brings me to another “opportunity” – I had to be courageous – breastfeeding my older toddler in a family where breastfeeding past the age of six months is unheard of (and frowned upon). And finally, I had to gather up courage to acknowledge to myself that I was “done” breastfeeding my second baby at an earlier age than I breastfed my first. After continual breastfeeding for over five years, I wanted my body back to myself. I was tired of sharing.
Sometimes I wonder if it’s been courage or plain stubbornness (the “gift” of “passionate persistence”) but either way, I look back on my breastfeeding experience with no regrets and even a few chuckles.
Today I want to celebrate courage, stubbornness, peace of mind, and two beautiful, healthy children. (It’s no surprise that one’s as stubborn as his mom – oh, I mean “passionately persistent!”)
And I invite you to reflect back and celebrate your own moments of courage, even if you didn’t feel very courageous at the time.
Shannon O’Donnell is President of Pumpin’ Pal International, a company dedicated to making pumping more comfortable for moms. She’s the proud (and sometimes overwhelmed!) mom of two very active boys and a breastfeeding advocate. Shannon loves to cook, snow ski, backpack, and paint watercolors of her children. When asked about motherhood, she warmly jokes about the saying, “It takes a village to raise a child.” In her life, the “village” is women supporting each other through the daily trials of motherhood, enabling each other to be more present, happy, and loving moms. Everyone wins when women support each other (and each others’ kids).
Pumpin’ Pal international is also proud to be a sponsor of the Mommy News & Views Blogiversary Celebration! Please visit the Review and Give-away of Pumpin’ Pal in our Blogiversary section.