Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Reasons to Love Breastfeeding

1) The milk-drunk look. You know the one. Its most often seen after the baby has been nursing for a while and is in a deep sloppy sleep. They pull off your nipple with a big sigh and immediately fall right back asleep. At this point, I usually look at Max and think "I could hold you like this forever."

2) It's an instant get-out-of-anything card. "Oh, I can't, (clear the table, do the dishes, help with homework, settle the squabble, get up and get the remote control, get my own chocolate chips) I'm nursing the baby. Now, I'm not admitting to anything. But I hear there are people who offer to nurse a little earlier than they normally might just to get out of a chore.

3) Newborn milk dribbles. I'll admit it. I don't much like nursing newborns. I make enough milk to power a small dairy farm, and I seem to always go through a 6-week or so period where my nipples feel like they've been rubbed with sandpaper and then set on fire. But I love when my newborns are nursing and there's little dribbles of milk coming out of the corners of their mouth.

4) Milk breath. Seriously, is there any better smell?

5) Even if I'm doing nothing else, I can sit in my favorite chair, pick up the baby, and feel like I'm being productive.

6) Some days, I don't feel like a very good parent. I yell at my kids, we get KFC for dinner, and I don't read the assigned take-home book with my first grader for the second night in a row. (And that was just today!) But with breastfeeding, I know I'm doing something right in my parenting.

7) Nursing giggles. Max is just now getting old enough to play with me once he's done with his frantic "I'm starving" nursing. He'll be nursing, then pull off and smile at me. Its a reward for 8 weeks of sore nipples. Or I tickle him just a little, and he giggles, but insists on keeping my breast in his mouth.

8) I love, love the frantic, excited, crazy-happy-anxious noise he makes when I lay him across my lap and start lifting up my shirt. It makes me laugh even harder when I don't do it fast enough for his taste, and from the sounds he makes, I know he would be yelling at me if he could talk. "C'mon, Mom, can't you go any faster?"

9) I love nursing toddlers. Yes, I know that puts me in a crazy subspecies all my own, but I do. I love being able to comfort, distract, unwind, relax and reconnect with a crazy toddler just by nursing for a few minutes. I love that they nurse in any position. I love that they frequently experiment with nursing positions just to see what they can do. And I love that I can play the piano and nurse a toddler at the same time.

10) And this one is just for me. I like knowing that come Friday afternoon, after 5-6 hours of surgery, and 1-2 hours coming out of anesthesia, and 3 hours of fasting before surgery, that there will be a time that I can pick up my son and nurse him, And no matter how scared and confused he is, and no matter how much he is hurting, he will know that everything is ok, and that his mommy still loves him. (Ok, I'm crying like a baby now, so I'm stopping.)

Anybody else want to add to my list?


  1. Oh that makes me cry too Stacy!!! I will be sending you and Max all my love and support on Friday. Let me know if you need anything.

    And yes I agree wholeheartedly with all these things you wrote. *sigh* I miss nursing even though I'm awfully glad not to have a toddler anymore!

  2. The drunk milk look is the best one. Actually it's a tie--I love that play time too. But if I were making the list it would be "gasp" about why I don't like nursing. Probably has something to do with the fact that I produce enough milk to feed a small kitten!


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