Monday, June 2, 2014

(Very) New Nursing Moms: Your Boobs Will Get More Normal

I swear. They may look like something out of Playboy right now, and they may leak constantly, requiring you to waste way too much good money on something as stupid as nursing pads, but they'll get better.

They'll look less Dolly Parton and more you. Not that there's anything wrong with Dolly. I mean, who doesn't love Dolly? Joleeeeeene JoleeeeeEEEeeene.

They'll feel less like bags of sand a la Steve Carrell's character in The 40-Year-Old Virgin and more like the old boobs you know and love.

The overnight leaking will go away, as will the sweating, and the bleeding. You'll have much better control over both baby's and your own bodily fluids soon. Just get through these first few weeks. Lean on whomever you can. Ask close visitors to bring you nursing camis in lieu of flowers. Freezer meals in lieu of cards. And trust me, don't even try cooking without a bra and nursing pads on. Not even for a second to pop in on the kitchen and make sure the water's not boiling over. You'll be boiling over.

Take a long bath if you can, use cooling gel packs if you have to, but do try to enjoy the time you spend nursing if you're at all able. There will be a night before too long when you try to put your screaming baby on your breast and she'll refuse. She'll cry harder than before you tried at all. And she'll suck on her hands and give you all the signs that she's hungry and there's nothing she wants from your breast. She'll want the bottle and she'll calm down when she has it, nursing herself to that peaceful dreamland without as much of your help; without that very physical connection with you.

All this is to say that last night my baby wanted the bottle over the breast, for the first time. It was hard not to feel sad about it. But at least my body's getting a little more "normal," whatever that is now.

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