Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Breast Pumping - a tiny memoir

At your baby's birth a nurse comes in,
chanting the mantra "breast is best"
and before you know it, she's got your baby
and pushing his face toward your chest.

He huffs and puffs, breathes in, breathes out.
Frantically looking for his food source
and the nurse's cold hand is on your boob -
something natural, she's trying to force.

You get the latch, there's a suck or two
then baby says "I'm done with this"
But you know he wasn't fed enough -
from "cradle" to "football" you try to switch.

You take him home and begin to plead,
harness your chi, say some curses,
"To hell with this!", you finally say.
No wonder the Tudors had wet nurses.

You invest in a pump to measure your goods,
finding comfort in each milliliter
and all of a sudden your finicky boy
has turned into quite the eater.

You may think "nipple confusion" is just a myth
but your newborn is no fool.
"The boob," he says, "is too much work,
but this bottle she's got is pretty cool".

So you resign to pump exclusively,
which once you accept, brings peace of mind.
You can see your output, plan ahead, and
some solace you start to find.

BUT the pump is not all peaches!
You're at the mercy of this machine
and between the cups, the tubes, the pumps,
the Mandela Freestyle is cruel and mean.

You put your nipples in a vice,
not once a day and more than twice.
Pulled and stretched, the milk "plunks" down
to the rhythmic sounds of the device.

Expelling the food from your knockers
like a million tiny mammograms
You begin to question your sanity,
putting your bosoms in such a jam.

You watch your supply collect.
Two ounces, three, four and growing
and even though your tatas hate you,
there is comfort in knowing

your giving baby what he needs,
enough to keep his tummy round and full
so you wake up at night, lift up your shirt,
and give your nips a little pull.

Austin's Christmas Gift to his Grandparents