Jackie and her husband just welcomed their third child into the world. With all of the stress, they were having some problems in their marriage. They decided to go out for a relaxing bite to eat with the kids, but their waitress had other plans.
Behind Her Back
Jackie returned to the table from the bathroom in tears. The waitress had left a note on their table that made Jackie’s blood boil.
The Tears Came
Instead of making a scene, she decided to calmly sit down and ignore it. 2 minutes went by and Jackie knew she had to do something. She demanded that he show her what the waitress had put on their table. Her eyes welled up as she read the letter.
Motherhood was definitely not easy, and Jackie Johnson-Smith was acutely aware of this. Despite all that she had been through, nothing compared to the Des Moines, Iowa pizza shop encounter.
Stirring Up Drama
The family’s waitress that evening felt brave enough to leave a note for Jackie’s husband on the table. Jackie noticed the piece of paper when she got back from the bathroom. She picked it up and couldn’t believe what she was reading.
Not Someone To Mess With
U.S. Army soldiers are tough people who you don’t want to mess with. Jackie is a veteran herself. After her service, she decided to dedicate her life to being a mom and raising her three children.
A War Hero
The waitress didn’t seem to be bothered by Jackie’s tough persona. She left a note for her husband that brought the young mom to tears. What could possibly make someone like Jackie emotional? Her husband was also shocked by her reaction.
Not So Glamorous
Being a mom is an exhausting job. Although Jackie always felt messy after changing diapers and doing dishes all day, she always looked her best. Her husband, on the other hand, was good-looking and always garnered attention.
He Got A Lot Of Attention
It was obvious that other women found her husband attractive, but she always made sure to not become jealous. But, this waitress was on another level and Jackie couldn’t hold back her feelings.
A Blind Eye
She was aware that her marriage had changed recently- three kids will do that. Jackie no longer felt like the young, smart, attractive woman she once was. Was this affecting their relationship?
Jackie often felt uncertain and insecure about her relationship with her husband. She always pushed these thoughts to the side, but this dinner at the pizza shop only escalated her feelings.
Bringing The Family Out
Instead of opting for a date night, Tom and Jackie took the entire family out for a bite to eat. It was hard to leave their newborn with family or a babysitter, he was only 1 month old.
Life With A Newborn
When they arrived at the restaurant, the baby began crying and screaming. Jackie knew he needed to eat so she fed him at the table. She felt other diners staring at her, but the way the waitress was looking at her and her husband was on another level.
Being a mom isn’t easy and many mothers are judged for their decisions and actions. When a mom lifts up her shirt in public, all eyes are on her. Jackie was used to this feeling since she breastfed all three of her children.
A Proud Momma
The constant stares didn’t deter Jackie from providing her kids with their proper nutrients. Tonight was no different, but the odd way the waitress was staring at her truly made her uneasy.
All Eyes On Them
Jackie heard people murmuring about her, but she continued what she was doing and kept her baby quiet. It used to upset her, but she learned to let it go and accept it.
Jackie felt the waitress’s stare and knew this was unlike any other attention she had ever gotten while breastfeeding. Maybe the waitress had never seen someone breastfeed before? Jackie had no idea.
When Jackie got up to use the bathroom, Tom asked for the bill. That’s when the waitress ran up to their table and slipped him a note, all while Jackie wasn’t around. What was really going on here?
A New Feeling
Tom picked up the note and began reading; little did he know, Jackie was watching. She saw the look on his face and knew something was going on. She experienced a feeling of betrayal she never had before.
How Did He React?
She expected Tom to hide the note in his pocket or throw it away before she got back, but he took out his phone instead! Was he saving the phone number the waitress wrote down on the piece of paper?
Had He Fallen In Love?
Jackie worried that Tom was falling in love with another woman right before her eyes. Was he tired of the burden of having 3 kids? Her heart sank as these thoughts raced through her mind.
Her Jealousy Was Showing
Jackie began to feel extremely angry at the waitress for what she had done. Did she really think she could swoop in and steal a married father of three? Jackie couldn’t believe what she was seeing.
Was Tom really saving this woman’s number into his phone? Jackie ran up to the table and demanded him to hand over the letter. She began crying as she read the words written on their dinner receipt.
Everything Was Suspicious
The waitress gave the family a discount on their meal. Why was she doing this? Did the two know each other from somewhere? Or was she just flirting with him for Jackie to see?
The Center Of Problems
Then she kept reading and saw that the note mentioned her choice to breastfeed in a public place. Jackie was used to being at the center of everyone’s stares, but no one had ever been so upfront as this waitress had.
Jackie couldn’t control herself and she began to cry. She was in awe at the waitress and her comments. Why would she say such things to a hardworking mother? What was her problem?
The Letter That Made Her Cry
Jackie kept reading the note over and over, sinking lower and lower into her chair. The tears kept flowing and she couldn’t stop them. The note was jarring, but it began to inspire Jackie.
Her Note Went Viral
Jackie was so taken back by the waitress’s actions that she decided to post on social media. She knew breastfe000eding in public was a debated topic, but the responses she received were unlike anything she could have ever imagined.
The Note Itself
Her post began as follows, “I have breastfed three children… I have breastfed them in countless places both pleasant and unpleasant, discreetly and out in the open. I have gotten many looks and stares, but tonight erases any negativity I have ever received.”
An Experienced Waitress
The waitress was aware of how uncomfortable women felt breastfeeding in restaurants. She noticed how other diners stared and pointed at young moms and their babies. This waitress, we found out, is named Bodi.
Sharing Her Emotions
Jackie’s post said, “…I ate at Fong’s for the first time tonight. Having a fussy baby I nursed him for a while in the booth and eventually left the table early as to not disrupt the restaurant. The waitress gave this receipt to my husband. I was speechless and emotional.” What exactly did the letter say?
What Did The Note Say?
Bodi doesn’t have any kids, so she has never dealt with this personally, but it still got to her. It bothered her that women felt uncomfortable to do something so natural as feeding their kids. She took action and wrote on this mother’s bill, “I bought one of your pizzas… Please thank your wife for breastfeeding!!”
She Expected The Worst
Jackie’s response to Bodi’s kindness was amazing. She had assumed her husband took out his phone to get her phone number. That wasn’t the case at all! She later admitted that she expected the worst.
Tom simply wanted to snap a picture of the note to share with friends and family. Jackie followed her husband and took out her phone too. Facebook users praised Bodi and Jackie. Notes like this one started to pop up everywhere.
Raising Breastfeeding Awareness
Both Bodi and Jackie started the conversation about breastfeeding, raising awareness surrounding the issue. Jackie and many other moms are tired of being stared at while feeding their children in the most natural way.
All She Wants
Bodi showed Jackie that there are so many people out there that support her and her decision to breastfeed in public. Breastfeeding may still be awkward to talk about, but progress is happening and it’s becoming easier to talk about it.
Although it’s completely normal and natural, women don’t usually get such positive feedback for doing it in public. “I noticed [Jackie] nursing and was so thrilled she did it!” said Bodi.
“…I tried not to stare because I didn’t want to seem creepy or make her feel uncomfortable, but I felt like doing jumping jacks!” Now we know why Jackie felt like she was being stared at…because she was!
Sticking Up For Other Women
Jackie said, “After dealing with people’s reactions for so long, it was like the universe was giving me a pat on the back. I was too stunned to go back inside and thank the waitress.”
“Although I don’t need a pat on the back for feeding my child, it sure felt amazing. It is amazing how we women can make each other feel when we empower each other” Jackie wrote. She even went back to the pizza shop to thank Bodi.
Jackie and Tom’s relationship has only strengthened since dinner at the pizza shop that one night. Jackie has also become more active on social media to show her support for public breastfeeding and to help end the stigma around it.
A Long Way
Bodi never thought her small note and discount would ever impact Jackie, Tom, and so many other people! Bodi changed their family’s life in numerous ways. Social media helped this note gain traction around the world and helped impact so many people!