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The ending of my second breastfeeding journey was sweet, no bitterness about it. I was done nursing, my son didn’t need it anymore — for sustenance or comfort — and getting my body back has allowed me to be a more present parent. Cuddling with my youngest now is such a carefree affair, without the prospect of him clawing at my chest in an attempt to drain me.
One thing I did have a hard time putting away, though, was my nursing cover. I recently wrote a list of all the things I bring back from Israel to the US when I visit the Holy Land, but one of my favorite such items was my Minene nursing “apron” that my mother brought me from an Israeli store. I even had her bring some for my new parent friends. It’s soft, well-made, flexible and, most importantly, has a pocket — and we all need more pockets, especially moms.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe that anyone needs to cover themselves while nursing, even if, for some reason, it’s a debate that keeps coming up in this year of 2023, when we absolutely have better things to argue about. There’s nothing sexual about breastfeeding — which is something that kids seem to get instinctively, and adults should also be smart enough to understand.
But personally, my breastfeeding cover was my shield from the world, a trusty companion in a not always easy breastfeeding journey that changed forever the way I thought about my body. It doubled as a sun cover, as a way to help my babies sleep during long flights, and a shield against harsh air conditioning. It helped me during those early days when I was still raw and struggling to figure out breastfeeding and didn’t want others to bear witness to that. While I believe that everyone should be able to breastfeed freely in public in the way that’s easiest for them, my breastfeeding cover helped me feed my babies whenever and wherever they needed to eat, while also helping me feel more at ease with my own body.
Now, after a second round of trusty help, my breastfeeding cover, which to be fair, I haven’t used in months, is finally going back to the attic. I thank it for its service, and the extra pocket space.
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