November 24, 2014

I will never forget the moment it happened. Mary asked me,

I was wondering if you could take some photos of me feeding the baby. I always see these glamorous photos of women breastfeeding but never beautiful photos of a woman bottle feeding.

My heart stopped and tears started welling up in my eyes. I had Gabe around the same time Mary gave birth and breastfeeding came relatively easy to me but Mary and and her baby struggled. It broke my heart to see her working so hard and feeling like she was somehow failing. She tried everything, we chatted on the phone occasionally to figure out what the next step should be. It’s not my place to share her story in detail because it is HER story but she made some courageous decisions.

I’ll spare you the “mommy wars” rhetoric here. But breastfeeding advocates have worked so hard to normalize nursing that oddly enough, it’s become hard for some moms to fully embrace bottles. In the midst of our family session, I promised that I would take some photos that would make it easier to do just that. I was nervous though because I felt like I had the potential to be a small part of her journey toward healing and I didn’t want to mess it up. I’m so happy with the joy and love that you can see in these and the connection between a mother and her child. I’m so proud of my friend.

All mothers working to feed their baby should feel beautiful, right?