LiLu announced earlier this week that today will be her LAST TMI THURSDAY.
I know I got in on this action late, but I have really enjoyed participating in this meme and getting to know the amazing LiLu through her uber-amusing posts. I've also met lots of very cool people through her site, so I'm thankful to her and to all of you for coming by & commenting! I'm sure I'll still do the occasional TMI post, so don't you worry your purty little heads over it, ok? Raunchy Bev lives on, and I still have many a story to tell.
Speaking of, today I'm going to talk about one of my favorite subjects, my ta-tas. Now don't get too excited, because this isn't a titillating tale (heh heh - see what I did there?), but it definitely qualifies as TMI.
You see, after my two sons were born my beloved rack took on a very utilitarian function:
Yes, I breastfed, and my kids were huge and loved to eat. Therefore, my already-large jubblies reached epic proportions and caused all sorts of embarrassing incidents before I, ahem... got a handle on 'em.
Let's start right after my first baby was born. I left the hospital feeling pretty good; D had taken to nursing well and I felt confident in my ability to nourish him. For those who don't know, for the first few days after birth your body does not produce milk, it produces a thin golden liquid called colostrum that is high in calories and nutrients.
Side note: when I told my dad (who used to be a dairy farmer) that little factoid he said, "Oh, just like in pigs."
Um, thanks, Dad.
Anywho! A few days after birth the mom's milk comes in, and when it does, it hurts like a MOFO. Now, my sister had her baby exactly seven days after my son was born, so I remember very vividly the moment when I knew my milk had come in. We had piled our newborn into his carseat to drive two hours north to visit my sister and her new family in the hospital, and on the way up I noticed that things felt... kind of hard.
Like, rock hard. And lumpy. And hurty. When we got to the hospital I gave my parents a hug and they were both taken aback and risked furtive glances to my chest when they didn't think I was looking. But I saw.
I ignored it as best I could and we spent time meeting my baby niece and chatting. At some point I took D to another room to nurse him and that's when I saw that things were... well, things were getting out of hand in the breastal region.
First of all, they were ENORMOUS. Bigger than my head, both of 'em, hard as bricks, and leaking milk. Nursing made it much, much worse. I was completely unprepared and suddenly realized that I wasn't nearly as much of an Earth Mother as I thought I was. I started to panic and searched through my diaper back looking for something to stop the flow, which had saturated my nursing bra and left two large wet splotches on my shirt. I tried TP, but it was drenched immediately. I finally found some panty liners in my purse and cobbled together a sort of semi-absorbent blockage just to get me home.
We said our goodbyes and left in a hurry. All the way home they hurt like bloody hell and by the time I got home I was desperate for relief. I'd read that hot showers help engorgement, so I stripped down and was preparing to shower when it happened.
Did you know that milk can shoot from a lactating woman's breasts with the force of a fire hose? Did you know that it can go pretty far, like, all the way across the room?
Well, now you do. You're welcome.
This went on for days until supply was regulated to fit demand. I discovered the wonders of nursing pads, thank goodness, so eventually I was able to leave the house again, though anyone who has ever nursed will tell you that being out in public with those things is like walking around with a loaded squirt gun and an itchy trigger finger. The potential for embarrassment is omnipresent.
My sister was also nursing at the time, and she once said that the feeling of your milk suddenly letting down in public reminded her of one of our favorite childhood movies, Top Secret!. There's a scene in which Hillary ("she whose bosoms defy gravity") arrives on a motorcycle and sees Nick (played by a pre-bloat Val Kilmer) and her breasts just glow. That's exactly how it feels when you're in a store and your milk decides to let down. Maybe you hear a baby cry, maybe you just think about your baby, or maybe you're even feeling a little frisky. Suddenly, your nipples tingle almost painfully and your shirt is drenched.
It's... it's... okay, it totally sucks.
Just one of the many sacrifices we mothers make to care for our
The good news is that once you stop nursing things do return to normal. Sure, eventually they might resemble two oranges in a pair of sweat socks dangling from my chest, but I am not above seeing someone for a little lift & tuck action at that point. Until then, they're still real and spectacular, thankyouverymuch.
Anyone else have embarrassing lactation stories to share?
No? Just me then? Alrighty then.