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  • New Mom Nurses 2-Month-Old Baby on Graduation Day and Shuns Naysayers

    The 22-year-old graduate and first-time mom is not ashamed of breastfeeding in public.
    by Rachel Perez .
New Mom Nurses 2-Month-Old Baby on Graduation Day and Shuns Naysayers
PHOTO BY courtesy of Pepshe Aranas
  • It's 2019, and people are still throwing shade and shaming women who are trying their best to cope and enjoy the cards they have been dealt.

    Pepshe Aranas, 22, recently earned her Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant & Institution Management from Liceo de Cagayan University, in Cagayan De Oro City. She also happened to be a mom to a 2-month-old baby who just happened to be hungry during Pepshe's college graduation rites. So, dressed in her toga, Pepshe popped in the bathroom for a feed.

    "Breastfeeding pero ga-graduate. Struggle man pero lalaban pa rin," Pepshe wrote on Facebook where she posted her photo breastfeeding her daughter.

    The new mom, who wrote her post in her dialect, said she almost felt embarrassed breastfeeding in a public bathroom. But she had no choice because she had to feed her baby. "Why would I be ashamed when I've done nothing wrong," the new mom wrote.

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    As of this writing, Pepshe's post received more than 57,000 reactions, nearly 10,000 comments,  and about 19,000 shares.

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    While many netizens praised Pepshe for breastfeeding and getting her college degree, there were several comments that reacted negatively to the fact she had a child outside marriage or that she shared a nursing photo they found offensive. 

    "I may not have been a good example to other youth, but my pregnancy taught me a lesson in life. Now, I have a strong drive to never give up on my dreams, which include being a good mom," Pepshe told SmartParenting.com.ph in an interview via Facebook Messenger.

    Pregnancy is a life changer for all women, single or married. And thankfully Pepshe's family, friends, and the father of her child support and empower her. 

    "I am thankful for my family's support," Pepshe said. "I got pregnant at the wrong time, and it was really painful for me, too," she admitted. "But when I gave birth and saw my baby, I was moved and more motivated," the new mom stressed.

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    She also thanked her school for allowing her to join the graduation ceremony. Her college's department played a crucial role in supporting and understanding her situation. Even her daughter "cooperated" while still in the womb! Pepshe completed her on-the-job training (OJT) before her due date, so she was able to dedicate her time solely to being a mother while waiting for the graduation rites. 

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    Pepshe shrugs off the comment that people think she only posted her breastfeeding photo for attention and publicity. She has learned the wonders of breastfeeding and breast milk, and she says she wants her daughter to enjoy its health benefits. Her family also supported her decision. 

    PHOTO BY courtesy of Pepshe Aranas
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    "I respect people's opinion, but a lot of them don't know my situation. No matter what other people say, I will breastfeed my baby whenever she needs to be fed and nourished," Pepshe added.

    And to sum up her message when Pepshe shared her graduation photo: never never stop dreaming and working hard for a better future for you and your family.

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