Carlee Benear Instagram’s photos of breastfeeding during yoga are an internet sensation
All moms know the struggle of trying to squeeze in a workout in between your kids’ schedules. But Carlee Benear, a Texas mom of three, is the queen of multitasking. In order to breastfeed her one-month-old daughter Maramaylee, and get some much deserved me time on her yoga mat, she simply does both at the same time. The results, which she posts on Instagram, look totally warrior goddess.
Benear is a stay at home mom to 5-year-old Milam, 2-year-old Cale and her newborn daughter, Maramaylee. She told the Huffington Post that after the birth of her second child she started practicing yoga for stress release. “Yoga was the best discovery for me and my family. My practice took off, I embarked with my children, on an incredible journey of self discovery.”
A couple weeks after Maramaylee was born, Benear was itching to get back on her yoga mat. But since breastfeeding babies don’t always respect when you’re in the middle of a sun salutation, little by little Benear began to bring her daughter onto the mat for feedings with her while she practiced.
Although Benear is completely comfortable spending time on her yoga mat with Maramaylee, they don’t always get their Om on when breastfeeding. “We enjoy our snuggled feedings,” she said, “but sometimes we need energy contact instead of eye contact.” But for her, doing yoga is just as relaxing as zoning out in a glider while breastfeeding. “Having her there with me flowing off of my energy helped me stay relaxed through the struggles of early breastfeeding.”
Her older kids enjoy yoga as well. “I find them practicing on my mat and in everyday situations often. It has really spiked their confidence, something I find important for a child to have.”
Her flexibility is astonishing. She had a baby a month ago. There’s stuff in my fridge that’s been around for longer than her baby has that hasn’t even gone moldy yet, and she’s twisting into a pretzel with ease.
As moms, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with trying to meet the needs of your kids. Especially when you have a newborn, the feeling that you have to be solely focused on them 100% of the time can be stifling. It’s also bullshit. Benear’s yoga bliss may not be what you’re into, but baking, journaling, sitting on your ass and watching trashy reality shows — whatever it is that makes you feel like your true self, do it. Do it while breastfeeding, bottle feeding, or while the baby naps. Do it when you can pass the baby off to your partner or a sitter. Take the time for yourself and don’t you dare feel anything less than fabulous for doing so.
Benear agrees. “What do I want to come from this?” she said. “Just to plant a seed of inspiration in one person would make me the happiest person in the world. Move your body, explore your mind, find what makes you happy and take care of yourself too.”