*Image: Stacilyn Bellemare and Lukas.*Attending the “nurse-in” held at the Berkshire mall this afternoon was as memorable as any of my more transformative life experiences. I was following up on my promise to attend the event as posted in my previous entry here. I had a bit of fun with that one – mainly to inject some humor into a situation which had become bogged down in political rhetoric, harsh language, and quickly polarizing viewpoints.What state of mind was I in when I crossed the entranceway to the commercial Mecca that is our own little upscale mall? I was looking forward with curiosity and an interest in cultural history. To attend an event where 100 women promised to breastfeed their children all in one place and time just seemed like a “must-experience” experience.Center Court began filling up about 12:30. By 1:00 p.m. the occasion had the makings of a historic regional event. Hundreds of curious onlookers crowded the railings on the second floor, where a bird’s eye view of the festivities was available. Even though there was a feeble attempt at banning photography from the second floor, the few guards there were fighting a losing battle. I descended the winding staircase and became a part of the mixed crowd of adults, infants, toddlers, breastfeeding mothers, some demure and others quite brazen; enthusiastic “lactivists” holding petitions, handing out leaflets; a large cast of supportive family and friends; blatantly voyeuristic males; and a full complement of journalists.And at some point, it hit me. Besides women claiming their right to nurse their children in public there was something so naturally sexy and erotic in the air that it seemed downright Dionysian. I was reminded of suffragette rallies, flower power, feminists (at the point at which they actually were burning their bras), be-ins, love-ins, and the pure natural power of movements in which strong, proud, freedom loving women were at the forefront. The sheer overwhelming force of the feminine ruled at Berkshire Mall today. It overcame all opposition by simply being what it is – natural, life-giving, mothering, nurturing, beautiful, attractive, sensitive, sensual, loving, erotic, empowered, and empowering. As I left the scene, I felt energized and inspired. It was clear to anyone with open eyes, open mind, and an open heart.Today, these women ruled!* width=”230″ height=”184″ /> width=”230″ height=”184″ /> width=”230″ height=”184″ /> *Berkshire Mall Nurse-in, 022407. All images, TFD 2007
Monthly Archives: February 2007
Unless your head is tightly pressed between a pair of pillows, you’ve heard about the current news flash in which a mother breastfeeding her baby at the Berkshire Mall caused some significant reaction. As I see it, there are two main points in this story that need to be examined. I will take a look at both of them.I have friends who think there’s nothing more important than their first amendment rights. Coincidentally, they happen to be the rudest and crudest friends I have. I’ve always figured there was a correlation there but maybe not. Most of my other friends understand that there are some situations where reason, societal well-being, and even decorum rule us better than our Constitution’s Bill of Rights.Weighing in on all this, in my one hand I hold the meaty substance of belief in our freedom of expression and action and in my other hand I hold the slippery matter of when it is well and proper to defer to others’ well-being and sense of decorum. Probing these two compelling views I feel some touchy issues.I’m not here to support either side. Both have their own appeal. I simply find our reactions fascinating. I suppose we have lots of rights. But the fact is, I rarely see many people calling much attention to themselves, acting on the fringe of acceptability, or making a big deal out of things.I have no interest in stating the obvious. I’m sure the Berkshire Mall Breast Feeder has some sort of right to do her thing in public. How interesting is that really? That’s what makes me come to some conclusions. It’s getting a lot of press because we love to talk about breasts. We also love to trumpet what we should or shouldn’t be doing. In short, we love breasts and we also love to get things off our chests.This Saturday at 1 p.m. we’ll be treated to a nurse-in, breast-in, feed-in, or whatever other clever name folks will be coming up with to identify a group of people dedicated to breast feeding, female rights, exhibitionism, and voyeurism. It does promise to be a bit of a circus – meat market even. I assume it will be like a rock concert where the audience holds their camera phones aloft, so they can participate in the action and perhaps snatch a souvenir of the event. Me? I’m a big supporter.See you at the mall…
* drawing, TFD, 2007
everyone knows we are all brutalized by the news. by means of our devices we hear things we would not discuss in public. now we do know we are all thinking about these things because we have the same devices. and because these sad things are everywhere and around us and inside us now we begin to talk about them to each other. at first we are in shame and we say them tentatively. but soon we enjoy the feelings they bring. We crave embarrassment. our children find all this quite fun. they love it when we embarrass ourselves in front of them.
“Only love can be divided endlessly and still not diminish.”Anne Morrow Lindbergh (1906-2001)Aviator and writer
mistaken for the soulescaping steam from nostrils freezes in solid airthings turn strangelike getting gasolineout under brilliant baysgreat bright stalls on icy concrete the living stand and shiverfueling up risking everything they are driven to wander and to go back homewithin the inward slide of gravitybetween cooling sunswhere death shines and nothing is everywhereI’m not going out there I hear the crazy talkthey’re spreading rumorsdangerous superstitionsabout resurrectionabout warmth