Tag Archives: rant

Ugh.

I’m ready to cry. I’m about at my breaking point. All the docs I’ve seen so far are sure that I have a primary autoimmune disease with lots of secondary problems that make my life miserable. Many of them have said they think it’s SLE or something that mimics MS, but are deferring to rheumatologist’s ruling. I got my lab results & saw the rheumy today, but walked away empty-handed. He said that, while I have a lot of SLE indicators, apparently I don’t have enough (yet?). He said I could start feeling better (not likely, he admitted) or I’ll get worse and the numbers will reflect it. Either way, no course of treatment for today except to continue the inadequate pain meds, and no new treatments until I’m decidedly worse. I’m so frustrated, because I already feel like shit on a stick, and now this either has to become my new “normal” or I can pray I get worse and that whatever I have progresses quickly enough to be measurable. Great choices.

Call for a nurse-in and a boycott!

You read my blog, presumably because you like (most of) what I have to say.  I don’t always address you directly, but that’s because I treat this blog more like an online diary.  I know you’re out there, and I appreciate your readership.

Now I’m going to ask you to help me out.

You all (should) know that I breastfeed my children.  My boys are uncircumcised.  All the kids wear cloth diapers, many handmade by me.  They have all slept in our bed with us.  We eat organic & free range wherever we can.  We support local ventures whenever possible.  I fight the fights worth fighting (and some that aren’t, but I’m not afraid of confrontation), and this is a fight worth fighting.

I want you to join me (or just come and support me) in a nurse-in at Safeway grocery store here in Fairbanks, Alaska, located at Airport Way & University Drive.  It’ll be Friday, August 6th, 2010, at a time yet to be determined.  I want it to be at a time convenient for enough people to show up.  Here’s why.

They told me to stop nursing my baby and leave.  I’m sure y’all know I didn’t comply with this “request.”

Here’s the story:  My newborn son started crying at approximately 7:25 pm on August 1, 2010. I figured that he was in need of a diaper & sent my husband to the truck to get one.  While my husband was outside, I remained inside with our 3-year-old son, our 16-month-old daughter, and our newborn.  My newborn started his hungry cry, so I sat down at a stool next to the Starbucks coffee stand and began nursing him while our other two children sat in the kiddie car portion of a grocery cart in front of me.  My husband returned from the truck, ordered a coffee, and came back to stand next to us.  It was at that point that the shift manager approached me and said while pointing at my chest, “You can’t be doing that.  You’ll have to leave.” I said, “I won’t do any such thing.  I’m protected by Alaska state law.”  Some woman I couldn’t see said, “Yeah right, like it’s protected for you to just be indecent in public.”  My husband said, “If you want, you can call the state troopers.”  The unidentified woman said she would.  This was about 7:30 pm.  No such call appears to have been made as I continued to sit there nursing for another ten minutes and the Alaska state troopers never came in.  When my son finished nursing, we left the store without making any further purchases.  [An employee in the parking lot collecting grocery carts told me he believes the shift manager’s name to be Josh.  “Josh” is in his late 20s to mid 30s, is Caucasian, has dark hair, wears glasses, stands roughly 5’8 to 6′, and is heavy-set.]

There is nothing indecent about breastfeeding. My body grew a tiny, perfect human being (three times, at that).  Now that my child lives outside of me, my body continues to provide him with sustenance.  Without my body, he has no nourishment or comfort.  My body has done amazing and beautiful things.  My body is useful for so much more than sex.  My body feeds my baby (and occasionally a thirsty or upset toddler).  Breastmilk gives my children so many more benefits than formula-feeding.  Learning their cues also means that I am more in tune with their needs and personalities, in turn letting me become a better parent.  I will not let my child cry it out when I have the ability to calm him and meet his needs by breastfeeding.  I will not let some ignorant jackass stop my child from eating, wherever the fuck I am.  If I am breastfeeding, I am protected by Alaska state law, anywhere I go that I’m allowed to be.  I should be protected anywhere I ever go in any state, but some places haven’t caught up with what should be yet.  You can help raise breastfeeding rights awareness.

Alaska is among 44 states, the District of Columbia, and the Virgin Islands, in that it has laws with language specifically allowing women to breastfeed in any public or private location.

Alaska is among 28 states, the District of Columbia, and the Virgin Islands, in that breastfeeding is exempt from public indecency laws.

AS 29.25.080. Breast-Feeding.

A municipality may not enact an ordinance that prohibits or restricts a woman breast-feeding a child in a public or private location where the woman and child are otherwise authorized to be. In a municipal ordinance, “lewd conduct,” “lewd touching,” “immoral conduct,” “indecent conduct,” and similar terms do not include the act of a woman breast-feeding a child in a public or private location where the woman and child are otherwise authorized to be. Nothing in this section may be construed to authorize an act that is an offense under a municipal ordinance that establishes an offense with elements substantially equivalent to the elements of an offense under AS 11.61.123 (indecent viewing & photography). This section is applicable to home rule and general law municipalities.

AS 01.10.060. Definitions.

(b) In the laws of the state, “lewd conduct,” “lewd touching,” “immoral conduct,” “indecent conduct,” and similar terms do not include the act of a woman breast-feeding a child in a public or private location where the woman and child are otherwise authorized to be. Nothing in this subsection may be construed to authorize an act that is an offense under AS 11.61.123 (indecent viewing & photography) .

So here’s what I ask of you —

NURSE-IN:  Join me in Safeway at University & Airport this Friday, August 6th, 2010, to nurse your baby in public.  Leave a comment below or email me at crystal@hippiediva.com and tell me what time is best for you.  I want to set this up so that as many people as possible can participate.  Get the word out!  Also,

BOYCOTT:  After the nurse-in, let your voice be heard with your dollars!  Boycott Safeway!  Get the word out!

Please, pass this along.

What a way to ring in World Breastfeeding Week.

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