Breastfeeding, Part 3
I've often thought of how it was going to happen. How Emmy would stop sucking sucking the nutrients of life from my bosoms. But this is SO NOT how I thought it would go down.
It started with a long, unwavering, unmistakable communique from my speech-disabled baby. She bit my left nipple. Hard. And for at least 13 seconds. Ask The Good Doctor. He was rustling out of bed when he heard my gasp. Followed by my eyes rolling into the back of my head and glazing over. As I sat there, paralyzed and waiting for the gator to release its deathgrip, I could only do what I've done the other 7 or so times she's bitten me: blow on her face and say, "Emmy, No No No" in my best whisper command. Because once, I accidentally yelped, "OWWWW" in the tone of voice one would use when one's nipple is in a a vice grip, and she didn't take too kindly to that. She scrunched up her face and cried and I was traumatized for partially deafening her left ear. So now I refrain and restrain. Two words every parent learns quickly.
But this most recent bite was not just for kicks. Not just to test out her new chompers. Her EIGHT new chompers. Our baby can't be bothered to crawl yet, and she's still only in the 10th percentile for height, according to her 9 month check up today, but she's growing teeth like a freaking shark. Every time we look in her mouth there's another white nubbin breaking through, ready to slice and dice Mommy's nipples at the slightest provocation.
This latest bite was different. It was serious. Like a mafia hit, she was sending a message. "I'm done. I'm over your boobs. I get my milk faster and easier from the bottle. So give it to me. Or else." Cue the baby fist punching the baby palm as she sits there looking all menacing.
When she finally released her grip, I sewed my nipple back on and exhaled. I offered up the boob again at the next feeding time. And when she gave me a little hoodrat biatchy look, and then kept her little mouth clamped shut, and stiffened her little 17 pound body and refused to move toward the jugs of milky goodness, I didn't push it. I just tried again. 5 more times over the next couple days. And each time, same thing. Plus a mashed up face before she burst into tears at the whole indignity of it all. She WAS NOT HAVING IT, PEOPLE.
But she had to eat. So I would go off to pump, oh the joys of that 10 minute experience hooked up to a Frankenstein like pink device with its vacuuming HWONK HWONK, and The Good Doctor would dip into the stockpiles and put milk into a bottle and BAM, she was all hungry hungry hippo and a happy little suckling pig.
I mean, I can't really believe that the weekend before my baby turned 9 months old, she's ditching the boobies. Does this mean she's all growed up? The pediatrician says it's A-OK and that's just how some babies roll. They wean themselves and there's no fanfare, no parade, no bon voyage and a champagne bottle breaking on the side of a ship. It's just, "I bite you. No hard feelings. Seacrest...out."
I guess it's better than the alternative. I mean, I wouldn't let it get THAT far. My cut off is 7. Yeah, definitely 7. 8 is WAY too old.