Saturday, August 09, 2008

To give the breast is to give life

Dar la teta es dar vida.
To give the breast is to give life.

I love this video, a public information broadcast from Puerto Rico. It shows the beautiful interplay of breastfeeding between mother and baby. There are all ages of children breastfeeding, from milk-drunk newborns to wiggly giggly toddlers. We see babies kneading their mothers' chests and stroking their faces. The mothers rock and sway, nuzzle and smell, and squeeze delicious baby bottoms. They hold babies in slings and on laps. They nurse lying down and standing up.



Oh, and the nipple twiddling. That is one thing I can't stand. I don't mind the kneading and the patting and the stroking and the mole-picking. But I have to draw the line at nipple twiddling. I don't enjoy being tuned like a radio dial.

12 comments:

  1. I have to laugh at your last comment. I agree. Nipple twiddling isn't my favorite.

    I do, however, love almost every other aspect of nursing. I'm loving every milk-drunk, sleep-filled grin and hungry nuzzle and noisy gulp right now since I've pretty sure she's my last one. What a sad day it will be when I nurse her for the last time. Hopefully that is a long time in the future. Right now I'm savoring every moment.

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  2. Definitely yick on the nipple twiddling - it's like fingernails on the blackboard for me! I loved, loved, loved the way my last baby patted my chest and face though. And my oldest dd used to twirl my hair.
    kelley - I've now weaned my last child and wanted to tell you that while it might be sad, you will always have those memories and the satisfaction. My last dd nursed "full term", weaning on her own at 3 yrs 2 mos, and coming to a gradual end was not so sad as I worried it would be. Dd nursed a little less, and then a little less, and then not for a week. The last month, most nursings were just a minute or so, and then she'd tell me she was all done and ready for bed, or to play, or whatever. After she hadn't nursed for a week, despite offers, I thought she was done. Then she asked to nurse before bed one night and nursed happily for quite a long time, the way she had when she was younger. She stroked my face, and patted my chest, and let go several times to tell me she loved me. She actually nursed until she fell asleep, something she hadn't done in over a month. I carried her to bed still latched on the way I used to, and as I leaned over to put her in bed, she let go, sighed, half opened her eyes and said "Oh, I love you so much mama!" And then she never nursed again. It was hard to be sad about that sort of ending!

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  3. That is a great video.

    I don't have nipple twiddling yet, but Margaret's started stroking her hand in circles on my chest. I got a nursing necklace thinking it would help. Not so much right now.

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  4. Oh G-d the mole-picking... That drives me insane. I thought I was the only one... The nipple-twiddling does, too, but I've developed several ways to combat that. It's gotten worse since I've been pregnant...he does it the same amount, I just have WAY less tolerance for it now.

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  5. Nipple twiddling...radio dial...reminds me of some naive teen experiences :)
    In the sling sewing group there's someone from PR, and she says no one breastfeeds, and certainly not in public. Interesting perspectives.

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  6. Jen.b.in.az8/10/08, 5:21 PM

    Wow, great video...and interesting what the person above me just wrote about PR. I was thinking, how lovely that they would show all the breasts and babies nursing - unlike here.

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  7. Thank you for posting this video. I've been sending links to your page to all the women I know... but especially those who are pregnant and/or nursing.

    I love the story doctorjen tells. I also thought weaning would be very sad and I've been avoiding the issue for a while now. I'm pregnant and due in a couple of weeks and haven't had milk for months but my 20 month old has continued to nurse. Some days I really don't want to and she is very understanding (for the most part) but neither of us is ready to give up this part of our relationship. It is easier to see what it might look like now that she doesn't nurse that much. Plus, my husband is doing bedtime now so I nurse her a little bit before they go upstairs. It's different.

    anyway, thanks for posting.

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  8. Thanks so much for sharing this! I love to see mothers and their babies together. It brought a tear to my eye. I hope my daughter doesn't wean for many months to come!

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  9. SO sweet! I loved it! Very very nice.

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  10. What a beautiful video!

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  11. Absolutely NO nipple twiddling! *Ugh* I couldn't stand it when my daughter did this. I finally got her to stop then she turned to my elbow. Well, better than the nipple I suppose.

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