Yes, We DO Need This Emoji

Design: Joshua Jones.
This piece was updated on October 20, 2016, to include mention of AltMoji.

Aside from the baby face, baby bottle, and maybe the newly hatched chick, the official emoji offerings for new and expectant moms are few and far between. That might change if the Unicode Consortium, the nonprofit that oversees the emoji-approval process, votes yes on a recent proposal. For a crib, you ask? A hanging mobile? Nope. At long last, we may get a breast-feeding emoji.

People first noticed the proposal, which was submitted by registered nurse Rachel Lee. The image included shows what Lee says is "the most popular method of holding a baby when breast-feeding, known as the 'cradle hold.'" You can't see the woman's head, just her neatly unbuttoned shirt and the baby.

Lee cites the importance of breast-feeding to cultures around the world since the start of civilization, as well as research on its health benefits. But she could just as well have called the Consortium's attention to breast-feeding as the hot-button issue it often becomes online. It's an emoji that mothers, families, and opinion-wielding Facebook users could find themselves using frequently.

Considering Unicode recently adopted a slew of new women-centric emoji, we have high hopes that Lee's design could get approved, too. Breast-feeding is a natural part of life and it should be integrated into our emoji lexicon.

While you're waiting for Lee's proposal to get approved, there's another way to get your breast-feeding emoji mix. Download AltMoji, Refinery29's emoji keyboard, for some real talk in your messages. Among your options: A milky nipple, a new mom cradling her baby, and a pregnant woman with some rad floral tattoos.