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Ivette Ivens Photo Shoot – Mama Tribe

We travel in packs. We are a village. We have each other’s backs. You mess with one, you mess with all.

The Badass Breastfeeders of Chicagoland, Abby Theuring

In my local mama tribe group, The Badass Breastfeeders of Chicagoland, I posted asking when our group was going to get one of those amazing group breastfeeding shots that you see going around Facebook. We tagged all of our local photographers and Ivette Ivens was interested. She said she wanted to do something a little different though so we started to throw around different ideas. I said I liked something a little more dramatic, something that would really make a statement. I suggested stopping traffic and Ivette loved it. We threw around a lot of ideas but traffic seemed to reach our goal of making a statement the best. We are powerful, confident, and not afraid. The shoot was amazing and intense! We all gathers in front of the Tribune Building in downtown Chicago. We put our stuff on the side of the street and one of the mamas brought her teenage daughter to watch it. We marched to the median and got into position. The cars were going by and we were all so anxious and energized! People started to gather and cars slowed down to see what was going on. Everyone was really excited. When Ivette had the shot we all cheered and ran back to the side walk. We were not in the middle of traffic endangering our children. The babies were cooperative, but I think they could feel the energy! One baby cried, but the shoot took about 5 minutes. You can see a short video of it in action here. https://www.facebook.com/IvetteIvensPhotography/videos/vb.626334454089655/971252636264500/?type=2&theater There were no close calls with traffic. We were on the median. We never entered moving traffic for obvious reasons. I have a lot of plans for future shots coming in the next year! Here is one from that day. And I will be coming out with more that challenge current cultural norms as they relate to women’s bodies. https://www.facebook.com/IvetteIvensPhotography/photos/a.627265150663252.1073741828.626334454089655/971818146207949/?type=1&theater I hope this photo helps to normalize breastfeeding by keeping the conversation going and keeping the images at the forefront of people’s minds. I hope to empower women to choose breastfeeding, keep breastfeeding through the struggles, and to help women feel that they are part of a community that will stick with them. We are a tribe. We stick together. And to show the mainstream that this is something beautiful and powerful, not to be hidden and not shameful. I think the breastfeeding community is doing everything right. We are talking about it, supporting one another, sharing photos and stories, speaking up when our rights are violated and standing strong while the cultural tides shift to bring breastfeeding back to everyday life. Which will happen. We won’t stop.

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