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Sports Illustrated swimsuit model Mara Martin breastfeeds baby on the runway

Mara Martin walks down the runway with her infant daughter during the Sports Illustrated swimwear show at Miami Swim Week, July 15, 2018, in Miami Beach, Fla.

Lynne Sladky / AP

Model Mara Martin is a working mom, and she brought her baby to her "office" on Sunday during Miami Swim Week. Martin made a bold statement on the runway as she walked while breastfeeding her 5-month-old daughter at the Paraiso x SI Swimsuit show.

Martin, an SI Swimsuit model search finalist, wore a one-shoulder gold two-piece swimsuit while holding her baby girl, Aria, who wore headphones to protect her ears. She wrote on Instagram that walking the Sports Illustrated swimsuit runway was a "life long dream" of hers, and said of the media attention, "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! " 

Martin wrote about her experience being one of 16 finalists for the fashion show at W South Beach. She said breastfeeding was nothing headline-worthy, and pointed out that the models also included two cancer survivors, one of whom is a Paralympic gold medalist, and a military member. "Those are the stories that our world should be discussing!!!!" she wrote.

The mom thanked MJ Day, editor of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, and the magazine, writing, "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!!!!!!"

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 (sorry i don’t know your IG handle 🤦🏽‍♀️), one woman had a 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

A post shared by Mara Martin (@_maramartin_) on

The Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue has evolved in recent years to be more inclusive. Last year, Christie Brinkley appeared in the issue at age 63, and this year, in February, the issue addressed the #MeToo movement with models donning empowering words on their bodies. 

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