|Meteo, "Early Addiction" May 15, 2010 via Flikr, Creative Commons Attribution|
The other morning we went to Starbucks while my middle son Sweet Pea was in speech. Once I had my decaf latte (which the baby did not share - the photo above is just a silly pic I found on Flikr), I thought I should probably nurse Bellybean, as it had been awhile since he'd eaten or slept - a recipe for car seat tears.
I saw there was only one chair left, and it was practically on top of one occupied by a man. Bellybean wasn't fussy at that point, and I didn't particularly want to breastfeed practically in the lap of a stranger, so I told myself he'd be fine.
Of course, the moment I put him down in his car seat, he looked at me accusingly and began to cry.
I gave him a toy, and talked soothingly to him as I buckled him in. As soothingly as I could, as I anxiously registered the time - there wasn't much left to get back to the school. At that point I knew if I took him out and nursed him sitting in the front seat, he might well fall asleep in my arms, and on the way back into the car seat, wake crying to be nursed to sleep all over again.
So rather than get him out, I did an advanced nursing position - the Car-Seat-Lean-In.
Worst. Breastfeeding. Position. Ever.
Five minutes of that and he was reluctantly willing to be distracted by the new toothbrush I'd left in the car after a dentist visit the other day, and we were on time to pick up Sweet Pea from speech.
But if I'd just trusted my instincts and sat down to feed him - or even latched him on standing there - I could have avoided a stressful few minutes for both of us, and a painful few for me.
I don't think I would've made the same choice if it weren't for my one negative nursing in public experience. Six years of all good experiences, and that one moment has affected me even four months later.
People don't understand the tremendous impact they can have when they are anything but 100% supportive of breastfeeding mothers. If they did, surely they'd only ever smile and give a thumbs up.