• ittasteslikelove

Mama, we have always been here

BY GUEST WRITER, HEATHER LIN

PICTURE BY BRIAN SMEETS, SMEETS STUDIO











See.


They will not cover up at your request.

They will not hide away and make their baby and themselves disappear.

They will not yield as you try to shame them for caring for their child.


They will not yield.


Do you know the strength of a mother? Do you know who you challenge?


Their eyes might fill with tears.

Their voices might waver.

The strength of a thousand mothers is behind them.


They will not yield.


Support.


When I tell you it hurts, listen to me.

When I tell you I need help, help me.

Help me to find it. Help me to understand it.


The strength of a thousand mothers is behind me.


When I tell you I am tired, comfort me.


Tell me that I am trying so hard.

Tell me that my baby loves me. Tell me that my baby needs me.

Tell me that it is difficult.


And that I can do difficult things.


The strength of a thousand mothers is behind me.


Show me my Everest and believe that I can climb it.

Show me a thousand mothers who understand me.


Show me that I am not alone, far from it.


Listen.


Don’t call it a break.


Don’t sigh.

Don’t put us in a storage closet.


Listen to what we need. Write it down,


Take us seriously.


The strength of a thousand mothers is behind us.

Respect us, maybe even admire us.

Educate our colleagues.


Educate yourself.


Every person was born of a mother. A thousand mothers.

A thousand tears. A thousand things not said.


Our role is fundamental, overlooked and ignored.


We will not be erased.

We will not be silenced.


A thousand times. A thousand tries.


A thousand.

A thousand.

A thousand.


We have always been here.



This poem was first broadcast by La Leche League Hong Kong on RTHK’s #Hashtag Hong Kong on Sunday 1st August, for World Breastfeeding Week

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