During the Paraiso x Sports Illustrated Swimsuit show on Sunday night in Miami, one model mom proved there’s never a wrong time to feed your baby. Mara Martin walked down the runway breastfeeding her 5-month-old daughter, Aria, while wearing a good two-piece bikini.
Martin, an SI Swimsuit model search finalist, expressed how walking the SI runway was “lifelong dream of hers.” What was more of a shock was seeing headlines about feeding her child, which is just a task she regularly does. “I can’t believe I am waking up to headlines with me and my daughter in them for doing something I do every day,” Martin posted on Instagram on Monday morning. “It is truly so humbling and unreal to say the least. I’m so grateful to be able to share this message and hopefully normalize breastfeeding and also show others that women CAN DO IT ALL!”
The model also said other women who walked the runway deserved more attention than her including a cancer survivor and Paralympic gold medalist. Martin also thanks Sports Illustrated for allowing each woman to be true to their own identities.
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Wow! WHAT A NIGHT! Words can’t even describe how amazing I feel after being picked to walk the runway for @si_swimsuit. Anyone who knows me, knows it has been a life long dream of mine. I can’t believe I am waking up to headlines with me and my daughter in them for doing something I do every day. It is truly so humbling and unreal to say the least. I’m so grateful to be able to share this message and hopefully normalize breastfeeding and also show others that women CAN DO IT ALL! But to be honest, the real reason I can’t believe it is a headline is because it shouldn’t be a headline!!! My story of being a mother and feeding her while walking is just that. Last night there are far more deserving headlines that our world should see. One woman is going to boot camp in two weeks to serve our country (@shauntness), one woman had a double mastectomy (@allynrose), and another is a cancer survivor, 2x paralympic gold medalist, as well as a mother herself (@bren_hucks you rock) Those are the stories that our world should be discussing!!!! Just thinking about all that was represented there… I desperately need to give the most thanks to @mj_day for this. She supported me in what I did last night. Without her support this wouldn’t even be discussed!!!! She and the entire Sports Illustrated family are the most amazing and incredible team to have worked with. THANK YOU for letting all 16 of us be our true selves, strong beautiful women!!! Because of you, my daughter is going to grow up in a better world, where she will always feel this way!!!!!! Lastly, to every single woman that rocked that runway with me. Be proud. I know I am of you! You all have inspired me in ways unimaginable. I love you all!!! #siswimsearch
The magazine has embraced the changing political climate in recent years. This year’s February issue shined a light on the Me Too movement featuring the models in the spread with words of empowerment written on them.