Mara Martin, a Sports Illustrated swimsuit search finalist, created quite a stir recently when she walked the runway in a bikini while breastfeeding her infant daughter. Afterward she posted on Instagram "I’m so grateful to be able to share this message and hopefully normalize breastfeeding and also show others that women CAN DO IT ALL!" She marveled at the fact that she was getting so much attention "for doing something I do every day."
OK, where to start...
- Excuse me, Mara. While you may be breastfeeding everyday, I don't think you do it in a bikini, while walking the runway, in front of a room full of people and a slew of photographers. If you do, you must have some full house.
And, be honest, you know exactly what the fuss is all about...you are a beautiful woman who did something seemingly outrageous. If you hadn't made a "splash" doing it, I'm guessing you would be disappointed.
- That's one...here's another: You hope to "normalize breastfeeding." I think breastfeeding is a beautiful and natural thing to do. Mothers who breastfeed are a special breed - especially if they are working outside the home. But what needs to be "normalized" about it?
Maybe Mara means normalizing breastfeeding on the runway. Whoo-hoo - I'm glad - now I know I can do that - and, thanks to Mara, I won't be a freak when I do breastfeed on the catwalk.
OK, yes...I do know that ship has sailed...I won't be breastfeeding on the runway. I won't even be on the runway... So none of that upsets me. However, I think it was a peculiar thing to say, it wasn't troubling. Here's what was...
- Mara's post shows how really excited about showing everyone that "women CAN DO IT ALL!" Doesn't that make you cringe??? It did me!!
Yes, of course we can do it all. We already know that because, as women, we're powerful and victorious. We are capable, loving and amazing creatures without whom the world would fall apart. So...maybe not the whole world, but our little world of house and home.
So...Yes, we can. BUT why should we?
From years of teaching my Victorious Woman Project classes, I know that "doing it all" is one of the biggest obstacles to a woman's personal success and happiness. And in my "Breaking the Cycle of Overcare" classes, "doing it all" is the very thing that makes us tired, angry, overwhelmed and resentful. It's a major cause of stress, overeating and lack of sleep for most women.
More recently, when talking to women about my latest book, The Five-Year Marriage, "doing it all" is the biggest complaint I hear. Things like "I stayed home to raise the kids but now I'm back to work - but I'm still doing all the house things I did before. Why isn't he pitching in?" Those women are ready to renegotiate their contracts!
Listen Victory Chicks, it's good to know that you can do it all - if you need to. It's empowering.
However, it's really more important - and just as empowering - to know that you can negotiate your life and choose what you want to do - and leave the rest...for another person, another day, another time of life. That REALLY doing it all!
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