Lactivists Anonymous

Hello?

tap, tap, tap

Is this…is this thing on? I’m sorry, I’m a little nervous.

Oh. Now?

Okay.

Hello!

whistling feedback from microphone


Ow.


Hello.

My name is Mommy.

I have three children, all of whom are breastfed.

Have been breastfed.

That is, two were breastfed until they were old enough to drive. One is currently being breastfed. I mean that literally. He is currently attached to my bosom via his precious mandible. See? And in a few minutes, he’ll be on my other bosom. And so on and so on and so on. It’s wonderful.

Really, I just can’t tell you what it means to me to have so many watercolor-hued, soft-focus moments throughout my day.

Ah, bonding!

Because, as you know, beyond breastmilk being the perfect food for our babies, it’s the bonding that’s important.

Whew boy, am I bonding.

Bond, bond, bond.

Can’t get enough of that bonding.

I love it.

Yeah.

Ah me….



Okay…really?

This week sucks.

And I’m not just being literal.

This week, breastfeeding sucks hard.

Yeah, yeah, I know…perfect food, so much easier than fumbling with bottles in the middle of the night, a little gold star on the Harvard entrance application, all that special one-of-a-kind bonding time. Of course, my husband seems pretty bonded to our girls and all he had to do was change a few diapers and then run around in the backyard kicking soccer balls with them. Oh, and occasionally he swings them upside-down by their feet.

Alright, maybe he did a bit more in the way of bonding.

But his nipples are intact.

Not that I resent breastfeeding’s more challenging moments, heavens no! I mean, what was I using my nipples for, anyway? Nothing, that’s what! Nope, they were just hanging out there on my chest, an essentially useless body part, free ride all the way. Complete slackers. And let’s face it, every once in a while they were even downright embarrassing to be around, getting all cold and breaking-up the clean lines of my Calvin Klein knock-off dress. Sheesh. Pain in the ass, really. As far as I’m concerned, they had it coming to them. Party’s over, girls. You want to be seen? How’s about I stick you with a screaming infant capable of suction pressure of around 450 pounds per square inch and now see how you like standing out in a crowd, you shameless little hussies. Cracked and bleeding? Can’t take the friction? Don’t worry girls. Here. Let me slather you in sheep oil then cover you with cold cabbage leaves. Feeling sexy now, you obnoxious tarts? Wanna complain some more about how that padded bra sometimes itched a little around your delicate edges?! Huh?!

HUH?!!!

Yeah, I thought so.

Where was I?

Oh yes.

Breastfeeding suckage.

Yeah, I’ve been through the challenges of low supply, high supply, and a pins-and-needles let-down that was so forceful it could knock an eye out; I’ve had cracks and bleeds and latch-on pain so exquisite that my toes became permanently curled and I can now quite comfortably wear those lotus shoes so popular with footbinders everywhere; I’ve suffered thrush and plugged ducts and engorgement the likes of which hasn’t been seen this side of a Howard Stern interview.

This week?

This week, it’s the 6-week growth spurt. This weeks it’s “building up supply” time. This week, I have the Adorable Siphon suctioning about once an hour, on the hour, for about an hour. If you do the math, that clocks in at around, oh, let’s see…dit, dit, dit…carry the five, divide by twelve, drop the…the pencil…I dropped my pencil. Aw heck, I’ll just round off the numbers for you:

I’ve been breastfeeding nonstop since last Thursday.

I’m starting to get a crick in my neck.

Moo.

Anyway, I know what you’re thinking. I do. You’re thinking “Well done, you! Bravo! God gave you breasts to feed your baby, not to fancy-up your décolleté! (As if.) Breast is best! Babies were born to be breastfed! The price for healthy children must be paid in hard work and sorrow and blood! The price is not too high. If you doubt it, ask those millions who live today under the tyranny of Hitlerism…

I mean, bottle feeding!”

At least, that’s what FDR once said about…about breastfeeding..

And that’s all well and good. Hooray! Hooray for breastfeeding! Woo! Hoo!

Breastfeeding is wonderful and all women should be educated and supported in breastfeeding their children. Am I right? Can I get an Amen?


But frankly, I gotta tell ya…this week I’m at the end of my rope.

Dangling, I am.

When I had one kid, I took the advice of “sleep when the baby sleeps” and “just stay in bed for a few days and nurse through the growth spurts”. It still wasn't easy but a bit more do-able, if barely. Even after my second baby, Seconda, I could occasionally find the time and energy to marathon-nurse her while my older daughter, Prima, was taking naps or contentedly locking herself in the cat kennel for most of the day with a bowl of Meow Mix. This time around, I have two children complaining “Mommy, you have to take me to soccer practice!” or “Mommy, please wash my clothes, I don’t want to dress-up in Dipsy again! The kids in school are mean to Teletubbies!” or “Mommy, please go to the grocery store. This cereal you gave us tastes like mixed seafood grill!”


Okay, what.

Cat food is mostly cereal filler. And just think of all those healthy Omega-3s. Yum. Yum.

Anyway, I’ve been thinking….

Sure, breastmilk is super healthy for wee snappers. And, of course, the more children who experience bonding and attachment through breastfeeding, the more blissfully self-assured, secure and convivial the general populace, which can only ultimately result in the end of petty ego-driven altercations, an end to all hatred, the complete cessation of war in the Middle East, and finally the promise of peace on earth fulfilled beneath the dawn of a golden D-cup sun.

But I gotta be honest and say that after five days of not having time to shower, and living with three children who also smell like week-old oysters and whose only remaining clean clothing are a few old Halloween costumes, well, peace on earth and goodwill toward men isn’t much of a carrot on a stick. Not even if Bono is holding the stick and promising to write a ballad about the ability of my cleavage to end third world debt. As far as I’m concerned, wars may rage on, empires clash, and rush hour drivers continue to give each other the finger, yet the power of my boobs to end all this suffering is of little consequence to me if I’m still wearing the same milk-soaked T-shirt as last Monday and there’s not a clean dish in the house.

I’m sorry.

My apologies to the UN.

And to my fellow breastfeeding advocates everywhere.


And now, I suppose, it’s time for my complete confession:

My babies…

Sigh. This is very difficult for me to say, but…but I know that I am among friends. I know that we are all mothers here, sisters in understanding, supporting each other through our parenting challenges and joining hands in empathy and unity so that we can finally withstand, together - once and for all - society’s underlying and overbearing patriarchal oppression that ultimately fuels our woman-against-woman, sister-versus-sister, mother-mama-mommy wars.

I feel that I can trust you.

I know that I can trust you.

And so, I’ll open up here. Bare all. Speak my truth, no matter how difficult it is to say or hear, yet confident that my sisters won't roast me with the fire of ten-thousand money-saving checks for Good Start® formula.

Phew.

Here goes.


My babies have received nourishment from the cold comfort of a bottle while nestled in the make-due arms of some guy called “the other parent”.

There. I said it.

That wasn't so bad. How about...

I hate pumping the way I hate stirrup pants: painful, unnatural and, I believe, offensive in the eyes of God…dess. Goddess.

Yes....

Yes, and I have broken down - yes, broken down, I say! - in the eleventh hour of a marathon nursing session, my tender pink nubbins screaming for mercy and willingly giving up the names of Al Qaeda operatives, the location of Jimmy Hoffa’s burial site, and the whereabouts of Frodo and The One Ring, all in exchange for the succulent relief delivered by four ounces of chalky, less-than-optimal, unnatural and highly toxic infant formula! In a bottle! And not one with an Avent nipple! Amen!

Amen! Amen! Amen!


That’s all.

Wow.

Wow, that felt…good! What a relief to finally say it all. Just say it out loud and know that I’ll still be one of the gals. One of the gang! Welcomed at the end of the meeting to join in the big, squishy, love-on group hug!


Right?


Ok…well, uhm, of course I also promise to do penance and don my hairshirt (the one with side vents for nursing) and read the last five issues of Mothering magazine. In the meantime, I'd like to Ouch!

Hey…hey…did someone just throw…a tube of Lansinoh at me?

Uhm…thank you?

I was saying that in the meantime YOW! That cabbage really hurt!

C’mon, guys…gals…I thought that we were all having a Kumbaya moment here. You know, I’m not just a complainer. I’m not just a weak-minded and weak-bodied excuse for a martyr…I mean, mother. See…see I’ve come here today with…with ideas for improvement! For change! I’m proactive! I mean…prolactive.

OOWWWW!

HEY! WHO THREW THAT BOOK AT ME! SERIOUSLY, that COULD have TAKEN my EYE OUT! That was NOT NICE!

DR. SEARS...???

DR. SEARS, WAS THAT YOU?!!!

Oh look, it's "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding”. Well now, I did lose my copy…

Hey! HEY! Give me…uurrgh…give me the mic back! I’m not done! I have…I have this idea…Youch!…idea for something called La Laundry League…you know…a group of women…a tribe…acccckkk give me mic!…to actually help out women in their homes so they can…arrhh…sleep when the…Let go! OW! YOU’RE STEPPING ON MY HAIR!

muffled wrestling

...groups of…women to get together and help…ungh, argh…physically help each other…

screeching feedback

…during the…the…Hey!…in the home…

mic drops

…during first eight weeks…c’mon now…three months…Careful! The baby is still latched on! Get…mmmphrrrrrrkkk

more wrestling

…really put our money where…where our…unghooffff…help each oth…

sound of body being dragged across floor

…in the home…ggrrn…elp!

milk spurting

offstage sounds of woman being beaten with a Similac single serve packet

Hey! Ouch! Stop that! I just...OW...I have ideas...argh!...


Fire exit door opens



“We shall overcome….We shall overcome some day!


and shuts



Oh, deep in my heart I do believe…we shall..."





Shout outs to Her Bad Mother , Stefanie at Baby on Bored, and Mamatulip.






60 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes, yes, if only we LIVED with our tribes. I had a great laugh at La Laundry League! After seeing my laundry mountain a neighbor child took pity on me and asked me if I wanted her to help me do my laundry! Yes, it was that bad. Do what you have to do to survive, that baby will be fine. Probably MORE than fine. Sometimes I wonder why I spent so much time and anxiety worrying about everything with my first two. I have had so much less time to worry about stuff with my third and she seems no worse for the wear. In fact, she seems to almost have benefited from it. She has been parenting by the "family" more than the other children. She has a big sister mommy, a big brother mommy, and that Daddy character got a lot more action with her too, by neccesity.

Anonymous said...

OH that was me above. The first comment. Woohoo. I am supposed to be doing a college class but took a Haluski break.

Dani

JJL said...

Splendid writing from evperience. Ever onward!

Anonymous said...

GASP. That's it slacker, you're off my favorites list.

I distinctly remember the six week growth spurt nursing marathon. It was around that time my husband would come home from work and routinely find me crumpled on the floor crying giant tears of despair and failure, or he'd find me rocking back and forth over a yellow can of enfamil while stabbing myself in the eye with a fork. It happens.

That baby is freaking adorable!

(Stupid Grin here, update your blog to ultra cool beta so I can leave comments!)

Mother said...

Wait are you saying you supplement? Oh shit. I can hear the thumping of the crazy boob brigade now...

Heh.

Sanity. That's how I weigh all my decisions now.

Will I fall off the deep end? If I have anything close to a maybe or yes, then I do what I need to do.

Fuck the naysayers.

toyfoto said...

Has anyone told you "you are brilliant" today? I'm sure they have just not in those exact words. Brilliant. YOU. Are.

Jozet said...

Hey! I didn't get the beta invite yet? Have I not arrived? Is there a secret code?

As for a boob kerfuffle on my blog, well, I think that everyone needs to have one big kerfuffle to really have arrived as a blogger. And then maybe I'll get th key to the beta site.

I am a breastfeeding advocate at heart. And there are many women who just don't have access to information to make their own educated decisions. That needs to be fixed. And sure, supplementing can be a slippery-slope when it comes to supply and demand, but not an impossible slope to stay on top of, especially with help. And I'm not just talking phone calls.

This...this is going to be an entire blog post...but this time around, I had a LOT of help and face-to-face, warm body companionship from some great women. I really think that it helped me sail through the first three weeks. I think that a group devoted to physically being there for other women - breastfeeding or not - through the early weeks and months can make a lot of difference in helping new moms, old moms and all moms in between to be more like the parents they want to be in spite of the sheer exhaustion. Not perfect. But also not feeling as if they are too overwhelemed to stick with some of the decisions they would stick with were they...showered. Or not suffocating under a household in complete chaos.

La Laundry League. Or The Tribe. Maybe it could be a co-op of help...I don't know. I'm an idea person. When I have more time and energy (see me in 1025) I'll work out the details and start the first chapter.

Stefanie said...

Thanks for the shout out. I only home you have a good alarm system because...well, let's just leave it at that.

Very well written I must say. I can't believe you've lasted as long as you have. Welcome back to the land of excrutiating pain free nipples.

Chase said...

Holy crap, woman!! HAHAHAHHA!!! "Milk spurting" made me nearly fall out of my computer chair! ROFL!!

MAN, it's good to not know personally what you're talking about. I'm a big fat baby...if my nipples were cracked and bleeding? OH.MY.GOD.

Hilarious, though. At least...from way over here. And not anywhere near those nips of yours. Eep.

Mary-LUE said...

You do know this is a Perfect Post award nomination, don't you? Like, for sure! (I'm for Southern California. Have to throw in a Valley Girl reference once in awhile.)

I was never a good pumper myself. I borrowed the mondo pump from a friend and my boobs just didn't like to produce unless there was a baby attached to them. So... horrors, they were supplemented with formula.

I think some of the reason the argument is so heated is still a reaction from the past when middle-class women chose formula feeding. I was fed homemade baby formula and my sister was formula fed. My mother never even considered breastfeeding.

Now, I think most people understand that the "breast is best" but there are those die-hard advocates who just won't take no for an answer and believe there is never a reason to supplement.

My sister was not encouraged to breastfeed and she had never been around women who did. After watching me breastfeed, she did try with her second, but was only able to make it a few days. She did not have the support in the home to make it a viable option. She could have really used the Tribe. I tried to be there but had my own 11 month old to contend with. But I'm so proud that she tried. It was so far outside of her comfort zone. She did her best and now, formula fed, she has two athletic, healthy teenagers now.

Um... Sorry for the hijack. Back to the compliments.

Funny, funny, funny. How are you managing this with two big girls and a six week old boy?

tiff said...

I gave up nursing my second child when he was 5 weeks old for ALL those reasons...I was weak. Weak.

Momma Star said...

Oh what an adorable little siphon.

Anyhow, yeah cracked and bleeding nipples. I remember those. I forgot the pain of childbirth, but until the day I day I will remember that pain.

Very gentle hugs.

Mazenbloo said...

Ahhh, I remember those days too! Hope the 'girls' are feeling better soon!

(and why is it when I'm leaving a comment and my word verification dealio is sscab

Gross!

KK said...

The siphon is adorable. I've only been off the milk line for 3 months so I can give you the "AMEN! Alleluia and praise be to the God-dess."

This post is priceless and so are you.

Stephanie T. said...

The Adorable Siphon is, truly, adorable!

I'm so sorry about the breastfeeding troubles, but if it's any small measure of comfort, all the pains and woes you're experiencing now will be a distant memory in the not so distant future. And, for the record, I would trade places with you in a minute (Yes, I'm insane, but in my defense I'm still battling a touch of that highly irrational infirmity known as "baby fever.")

Jozet said...

Hey Stef - about trading places? I know. I should complain about such troubles when my siphon is so adorable.

Baby fever is never irrantional. A very sincere big squishy hug coming your way.

Ms. Huis Herself said...

Delurking to say that was HIE-LARE-EE-OUS!!! I've got a friend who is recently a new mommy for the second time, and having a few concerns herself, who will SO enjoy your post, so I've got to pass it on! Thank you!

Queenie said...

I love you.
my two month old has had one or two bottles a day since she was three days old (doctor told me to supplement because my milk hadn't come in...it did four hours later. stupid doctor.), and I use that opportunity to pump, which gives my screamingly sucked-out-of-shape nipples a rest. Besdies, it gives daddy time to hang out, and with a steady supply of frozen boob, grandma can give her a bunch of bottles while catch up on my sleep:)
Did I mention that you're awesome? Because I de-lurked to say you're awesome.

mamatulip said...

Well, I think you know how I feel about this, seeing as we SHARE THE SAME BRAIN and all.

Mrs. Chicky said...

Amen! A-fucking-men!

I started giving my baby formula when she was five months old, but if I were to do it all again I would have given her that poison much, much sooner. In a playtex nurser. So there. Suck it, breastfeeding nazis.

Why do I feel like this is an AA meeting? Hi, I'm Mrs. C and I gave my baby formula. Pretty soon, all of us will be huddling outside in the rain, sneaking smokes.

bubandpie said...

First, I was going to say how much I love a post in which the blogger addresses her nipples as "you obnoxious tarts." Then I got to the part about Bono and I was like "mmm, Bono." And then I got to La Laundry League and your grand confession, and I'm so blown away that I JUST DON"T KNOW WHAT MY FAVOURITE PART IS ANYMORE.

Sheer brilliance (and I guess this means that I'd better come back and check this blog out because obviously I've been really missing out).

lildb said...

if I had the means, I'd deliver a cake the size of a small nation to your house. one that was not only delicious *and* nutritious, but also had secret drawers tucked in its lovely, cakey folds, chock full of clean wearables for all the people in your family, and several warming drawers full of bottles already made up and held at the appropriate temperature.

and an even secret-er door, that held an extra-secret passage that led you into the bosom of the most cozy spa known to humankind, that existed expressly (heh) for lactators (kinda like dictators, only with breasts instead of dicks), and doled out even more clean clothes made entirely of cashmere, and the spa rules enforced twenty-minute-minimums on showers taken, while a small army of caregivers had simultaneously been unleashed through the secretest passage, back into the cake, and through that into your home, where they were not only watching the kids, and feeding the baby a perfectly-heated bottle, but cleaning the house, all of it, even under the fridge, and yeah.

(now I kinda want that cake for myself, it sounds so nice.)

Jozet said...

Okay, yes...yes, please send that cake. That is the perfect cake!

omg...you all are too funny!

La Lovely Cake League!

I will say that my friend who is a La Leche League leader would also make a great leader for whatever this new group of mommy caretakers would be called. She not only helped me through a few days of shockingly painful engorgement, but she also brought me a pan of the most delectable baked ziti.

La Lasagna League!

Anonymous said...

I also got some sort of baked pasta dish from a La Lasagna League friend and it was wonderful! I think we had it for several meals. The thing about the siphons being six weeks old is that just as this six-week growth spurt hits every assumes you are now into a groove with the baby and the support dries up a bit. Yep, that was the time when Dh would come home to me crying in the middle of the LR floor, with my shirt off (what was the point of wearing one really, it was just in the way,) with the kids running amok, and the dogs chewing the furniture. He just didn't get it because the week before with the meals, and no growth spurt I was cruising along. They also start being more alert around then and sleeping just a bit less. Phew, now that it's almost 3 years away I can almost look at it kind of nostalgically. Almost. It is hard to help out my friends as much as I would like with three of mine own. Maybe it will have to be La Local Grandma League?

Dani

krista said...

I am on my way out the door, so I can't comment properly, but I couldn't leave here without telling you how awesome that post was. Hilarious. Ah the breastfeeding ambivalence... Something we share.

JennC said...

that was very funny.
very.
doors shut all around me.
thanks.

mothergoosemouse said...

Jozet, I love you. Thank you for making such a contentious (why? WHY does it have to be that way?) topic so funny.

We do what we gotta do. And personally, I'd like to start La Liquor League.

kaliroz said...

I think I just choked on my V8 ... if I die I will come back to haunt you!

Oh my god, my ta-tas (yes I call them that) hurt just reading that.

I def. think a Tribe of some sort is needed. I had to give up breastfeeding because my milk never came in! I was SO freaking guilty over that. Some warm, womanly bodies to comfort me would've helped.

Much love for you and the Siphon ... who is the most beautiful little boy!

Trans said...

Omg, I love this!

My son and I passed thrush back and forth between us for *months*. I really did love the bonding - nothing beats rubbing your chin against a head of sleeping, soft baby hair - but I could have lived without cracking and bleeding and let down whenever *any* baby cried.

©Jac said...

That siphon IS adorable! I would have gladly supplemented if mine had *let me* ;)
Hope you are getting some much needed relief!

Moobs said...

The answer is obvious:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Male_lactation

nadzent said...

Oh...jozet...I soooooo feel your pain (literally) as i sit here reading this with one suckling child attached to my breast while his brother screams for booby from the crib.

Yes, I am right there with you - laughing through the tears. Thanks for putting it all into comic perspective. I do love you.

P.S. I am supplementing too. I dare anyone to give me grief about it - I am just looking for an excuse to go psycho on someone's ass these days. Hello? Sleep deprivation anyone?

wordgirl said...

I believe Willie Nelson referred to that phenomenon as the ability to "suck the chrome off of a trailer hitch". Although, he was actually talking about--uh--another part of the anatomy. *cough*.

Anyway...I've been there, sore nipples and all, and I know of what you speak. Cracked nipples are of the devil. The end.

I'm lighting a candle for you...even though you've made me laugh so hard that I might blow it out.

wordgirl said...

I believe Willie Nelson referred to that phenomenon as the ability to "suck the chrome off of a trailer hitch". Although, he was actually talking about--uh--another part of the anatomy. *cough*.

Anyway...I've been there, sore nipples and all, and I know of what you speak. Cracked nipples are of the devil. The end.

I'm lighting a candle for you...even though you've made me laugh so hard that I might blow it out.

LibraMama said...

I love you, and check your email! Coming back to post later but had to give you a shout-out.

Chantelle

Mom101 said...

How much do I love you? How much? So much that if I could, I would breastfeed those children for you.

Yes, okay so I am exaggerating a wee bit. But boy, do I love you.

Stacy said...

Delurking to say that I am currently experiencing let down after reading your post...while I anxiously await another extended overnight visit at my all you can eat breasturant. I should be sleeping. Instead I watch my own siphon sleep...

Julie Pippert said...

Josette, babe, I have been avoiding commenting to you.

Now I'll be well buried and it's probably not even worth the pain it brings me to discuss breastfeeding.

But I will because of course I lurve you.

HA! Effing boobs. Breastfeeding. BAH! If I ever have another adorable siphon (BTW, yours is too precious) I will so bottle and formula feed. And I'mkicking Persistence off the boob ummm any day now. Really.

Hey didn't I slip some Lansinoh in with the Pez and foot cream? If not, wooh, sorry. Big oversight.

Hang in there. You'll recuperate just in time for the 8 week growth spurt. Wait, I meant to be supportive.

Listen, I hear ya sistah. I'm dealing with the two year growth spurt BWAHAHAHAHA.

Jess Riley said...

Is it possible for boobs to hurt in solidarity with other boobs?

Man-o-man there is much for me to learn ... Joze, hilarious as always. :)

anne said...

Sis,

Oh God!

I thought I had those memories buried so deep that a year's worth of sessions on an expensive leather couch couldn't even bring them out.

I mean...

I loved breastfeeding too!

Call mom. I'm sure she has some wacky Lithuanian home remedy for it. Like maybe a scoop of warm mashed potatoes on each booby. Or flitch.

Mmmmmm....flitch.

God/dess be with you on this one.

PS - my word verification is jyjjbbha which is what I distinctly remember saying when the little babs would latch on.
"Jyjjbbha!!!!!! OWWW!"

penelopeto said...

You totally nailed tit.
Rock on.

Wendy said...

10 day old baby girl here. Taking first internet break in many days. See your post. Now I feel not so alone in my crazy 3 hour cycle - 1 hour at the boobs (to get maybe 25 minutes of actual sucking), 1/4 hour of pumping to boost supply, another 15-20 minutes for burping/changing/rocking, and then about an hour to sleep before the cycle starts over again. Oh and yes, the cracked and bloody nipples. Good times, good times.

I told my husband that to truly understand what it was like, I would get to wake him for 2 hours every 3, and hit him on the thumb with a hammer for those two hours. He, however, isn't down with trying that little experiment for some reason.

And they do this feeding every 2-3 hour thing for HOW many months??

But ...... I love her so much it turns my insides out. :)

Imperfect Mommy said...

Well, can I say that I feel your pain? Whew. A week ago today I was in labor and today I am nursing both a one week old and some really sore nipples. Everytime he latches on to the right side, I wince and curl my toes the exact same way. And every time my husband looks at me and says "what's wrong?" Ahh... It fucking hurts. That's what is wrong!

Great post and even though I live very close to you, I am not going to come hunt you down with my cans of similac wrapped in a nylon stocking for a good whooping. Gotta do what you gotta do.

Imzadi said...

Amen!

and teehee

Denise said...

Hilarious.

Mine are both exclusively bottle-fed. They're adopted, but by the time I found out that was no longer a valid excuse for not breastfeeding, it was kind of too late.

I just found out, though, that being MALE is no longer a valid excuse, either.

T. said...

I'm here bowing down to you. This post rocks...

Now I am standing up straight, because my recently mutilated boobs hurt when I bend over and the rings hang down.

Not quite the same as having a Hoover chew on them, but I do feel your pain.

penelopeto said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Her Bad Mother said...

This is the greatest piece of writing on lactivity and lactivation and lactivism that I HAVE EVER READ.

Full stop.

I'll add this, though: I breastfeed WonderBaby for eight months. The first month and a half was brutal. The latter six and a half months were mostly fine. Sometimes I even basked in the glow of lacternal happiness. But when it was done, after I got over the surprise? I was happy. Relieved. My boobs were mine again, baby. Somewhat diminished, but still. MINE.

This post is indeed a public service.

Jenny said...

Oh my God.

Please be my friend.

I can so relate to this post...except that I was a lousy breastfeeder. Even with prescription drugs, lacation consultants, etc I couldn't do it.

And I felt like such a broken loser.

nomotherearth said...

Wow, after all the wonderful comments, what's left to say. Fabulous writing - at certain points I almost felt like I was watching this on film it was descriptive! I'll be sure to check out your blog more often after reading this.
Cabbage leaves. Ha! If I never see them again in my life or in my bra, it will be too soon.

Damselfly said...

OMG, I could have written this post, if only I were as clever and funny as you! I am so sore that I can't hug anyone. I can't hold my baby against my chest. Heck, I can hardly stand to shower. All people can do to help is say, "Hang in there, it gets better!" I need to print this out and read it every day.... when that crick in my neck goes away.

Anonymous said...

Haven't had a kid on my boob in over a decade and I had sympathy pains just reading that. Where oh where was the internet when I was dealing with these issues?

Thank you, you are the BOMB.

Freudian Slip said...

What a wonderful post :)

Breast feeding sure was a very special time for me and my children. What an incredible bonding experience!
Kimberly

needmorebagbalm said...

Love it, love it.
I came up with a theory when I started nursing my first child:
Breastfeeding is great;if you don't mind sticking your nipple in a bear trap!
It's very cool to hear (or see) so many others give voice to what I think a lot of women just try to deal with in silence.
I'm nursing a seven week old baby--my fourth. Oddly, I don't think it actually feels any better, it's just that my pain threshold has improved! On the other hand, I'm getting closer to my lifelong goal of being able to fling one boob over my shoulder to get it out of my way. In other words, gravity will prevail, and those little adorable siphons will help!
BTW, love the comparison with the hammer...maybe I could whack my hubby with one everytime I wake up to feed the siphon...not necessarily on the thumb...just whatever is handy...

Jessica said...

Hi-freaking-larious! Thank you! Wonderful, wonderful. Yes, where exactly is all that sisterhood? I'm gonna have to add you to my blogroll now. :)

Anonymous said...

I read as much as I could about breast feeding thinking this is going to be a breeze.... along came little one and the first time is was awsome, everytime after that hurt so bad. Eveyone at the hospital kept telling me "If it hurts your doing it wrong" and I felt like I didn't know what the f*ck I was doing and I had to have been doing it all wrong because everything I read said that it shouldn't hurt. And then I talked to friends who had children and realized it was totally normal. Have these people ever had children? Seriously, the words they say in the books are "it may be a little uncomfortable at first" How about just saying "It F*cking hurts worse than giving birth!!

jess said...

My mama was a La Leche League leader before it was cool. If she could figure out how to navigate the internet, I'd send this to her. My intense appreciation for this post is only compounded by the comment about lactators being" like dictators but with breasts instead of dicks." So beautiful I might cry...

jm said...

You rock. Breastfeeding is hard. Plus I had my baby at the beginning of several intense heat waves, and my visiting mother told me I should really wear a shirt, please. !!! In my own apartment!! In the first month!! And my husband threatened to buy formula every time the baby cried and I wasn't nursing it. We all survived. What was my point? I don't have one. I just want some of the tribe to visit when I have my next baby. Please.

Alexicographer said...

Very late to the party here, but I just clicked over from Her Bad Mother having been delighted to find one other person referencing Sarah Blaffer Hrdy on mommy blogs.

I love this.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Oh, thank you, you made me laugh so hard, I started to cry, cry out, cry loud and cry so deeply, that my husband wondered if I would be okay. Yes, I'm okay, if being exhausted, sleep deprived, overwhelmed and sore as all hell, is okay. I'm on my third nurser, and hell, it has its challenges, even with all the lessons learned with my previous two. I've just never nursed and had two other young children at the same time. Oh, I'd love the laundry league!
Thank you so much for your honesty!
It was the laugh and cry I needed!

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