I did a flippant post on Breast Appreciation Month a few days ago. And that post caused me to recall an incident that happened, oh maybe 15 years ago.
The incident involved breasts.
I recalled the incident.
Okay, so maybe its not my best stuff.
Anyhow, I'm sitting in my office with my 10:00, who brought her baby with her. It's not an ideal situation but, it happens. She's a new client so I should maybe point out that because by this point in my career, I not only have a graduate degree and several thousand hours of counselling experience, I can tell right off that this woman is gorgeous. I mean, her face is flawless as is the rest, right down to the tips of her toes.
I shake my head, blink my eyes and force myself to pay attention.
So she's telling me how she's been really really tired ever since the baby was born and how her husband is doing nothing at all to lighten her load. She feels angry and resentful all the time and she thinks that the baby isn't sleeping well because he's picking up on the tension in the house.
That's when the baby begins to fuss, and we have to stop the conversation.
I'm kind of a “look a squirrel!” kind of guy, so distractions have little trouble distracting me. However, babies have to go somewhere so I try to block it out. And then something happens that simply can't be ignored.
The mother decides the baby is fussy because he's hungry and she begins to unbutton her top. She unbuttons her top all the way. Not only is she not wearing a nursing bra. She's not wearing any bra at all.
Perhaps now you understand why I recall this incident.
She pulls both sides of her top out of the way so both breasts are fully out there, and latches the little darling on to her right breast. Then without missing a beat, she continues by asking if I thought she should demand that her husband do more to help, or wait and see how exhausted she has to get before he notices.
It is summer and it is warm (and getting warmer) in my office so I understand not wanting to smother the child with some kind of blanket to cover up. But this woman is really relaxed about this sort of thing. She didn't even bring a blanket or some sort of cover. She had no intentions of covering up. Don't get me wrong. I'm all for breastfeeding. I mean, you know, mothers feeding their babies that way. It's just that – okay – it made me wish she wasn't so incredibly beautiful. I'm feeling guilty about my thoughts. My eyebrow muscles ache. For the last five minutes my brows have been in a high high arch trying to keep my eyes from losing eye contact with her.
You may think there must have been something wrong with her. That she had an ulterior motive for exposing so much of herself. I don't think so. She wasn't making a statement or anything like that. I know what making a statement looks like. Like the time a young woman was in my office. She was sent by Parole for an addictions assessment. Complexion as white as rice, wearing an Afro the size of huge watermelon and a tee shirt saying, “Eat Shit.” She was making a statement.
To the breast of my recollection, this young mother was simply taking care of her baby and looking for a little understanding. At least that's what I recall.