A Post About Boobs. But You Know, the Lame Mommyblog Functional Sort of Boobs.
February 18, 2009
Ezra had his four-month check-up yesterday (hmm, feels like way too many hyphens in that sentence, but no matter), and unlike last time I cannot directly compare his stats to his big brother's, because I never blogged about them. So I don't know them. So I was either completely over documenting Noah's babyhood by four months or at least briefly pretending to for the Sake Of My Poor Mommyblogged-Out Audience. Or....(scans blog archives once more)...ah. Yes. Month four was the month of the rotavirus. Over and over again. So I was simply too busy vomiting. I remember now.
(I also remember why it became imperative that we move to a place with more than one bathroom, as I never, ever wish to repeat the math of Two Sick Adults, One Toilet again.)
Anyway. I believe Noah was somewhere in the 15-pound range, and really long, like 95th percentile long. His doctor was all, "Have you started him on solids yet?" And I was all, "Yesssss," because the Internet had yelled at me for starting him on solids. And the doctor was all, "Good!" and proceeded to rage against commercial rice cereal for the next like, 20 minutes.
Ezra weighs 15 pounds, 9 ounces and is 26 inches long. 75th percentile, more or less. They didn't give me the percentile for his head measurement (16 3/4 inches), but did comment that wow, it really IS the most perfectly round head ever. He's like a cantelope, attached to a ham.
I also got the green light to start him on solids, if we feel like it. (Our doctor uses a "six months or 15 pounds or doubled birth weight or whichever comes first" guideline, which I know is not what every doctor recommends, but oh hai, welcome to motherhood, the land of a million magical and conflicting opinions about every fucking little thing you do,)
I came home and ground up some oatmeal in the blender (one chronically constipated kid is ENOUGH, thank you, rice cereal)...and then poured it in a plastic container and put it away.
Not quite ready yet, let's stick with the six-month plan, I thought. But unlike last time, when my instincts told me yes, Noah was ready, whatever, I'm not sure this is so much my instincts but a small, quiet need to Not Be Done Exclusively Breastfeeding yet. And yeah, I'm aware that of all the neurotic things I've said on my website, that's gotta be up there in the top five, at least.
I'm not too worried Ezra will wean himself -- despite being "ready," I don't even think he'll be that interested in food, and don't even get me started on the crazy hoops we go through to get him to accept the occasional bottle. ($13 bottles that look like boobs, people. I tried to give him one last night out at a restaurant because I wasn't wearing an easily-opened top and had some about-to-expire breastmilk in the fridge [he won't eat anything that's been frozen and thawed, or even not super-freshly pumped, which I finally figured out is likely excess lipase, gah], and I swear, having that bottle out on the table felt more suggestive than opening my bra in public ever has. He also still wouldn't take it, and I ended up stretching out the neckline of a brand-new dress anyway.) I am pretty sure we'll be nursing for as long as I could ever possibly want to nurse, which I think is somewhere north of a year but south of "able to unbutton my shirt and ask for it."
I'm not worried about my supply or allergies or anything like that. No, this is just me selfishly clinging to a passing phase of infancy, when I was all he needed in the world, when I truly got to be his everything. When I could see his rolly thighs and those numbers on the scale and proudly think: Me! All me! I did that! He used to be a zygote and now! LOOK AT WHAT MY BODY CAN DO! (thumps chest, swaggers away, awwwyeah)
I've started and deleted a "In Praise of Breastfeeding" type post several times -- partly because I don't want to make anyone feel badly because they couldn't or didn't.
And partly because the only commenter I've had to ban since Ezra was born would only show up on posts whenever I said ANYTHING positive about breastfeeding, and who would leave rambling comments about what a load of shit it all was and seemed to think I was some kind of anti-formula zealot. Quite refreshing, honestly, from the days when I regularly got comments about how my low supply was all in my imagination, and supplementing with formula was just an excuse for laziness and didn't I know that all I had to do was <insert solution that I'd already fucking tried, thanks>.
(Oh, and whatever -- Ezra HAS had formula, every now and again, thanks to the lipase/storing problem combined with growth spurts where he drinks every blessed drop and there's nothing left to pump. Oh my God, the horror! And whatever, etc.)
But. I've loved nursing this baby. I get why women get so passionate about it, even though that passion rankles those who had troubles, because it can sound like a judgement. "Yeah, it was all perfect sunshine and rainbows for you, but it was hell on earth for me and STOP JUDGING STOP JUDGING I FAIL, OKAY? GOD." I am so not judging.
I love his face when he knows he's going to eat -- big eyes, open mouth, excited breathing and arm flailing. I love how he sighs contentedly after a few swallows. How he looks up at me with wide, adoring eyes. How he takes a break to smile at me right before nuzzling back against me. I love how, when he's really good and hungry and I'm taking too long for his liking, he lets out a squawky, impatient shriek. When I think about everything I have done with with only one hand over the past four months -- phone calls, bills, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, this very entry -- I laugh, and I love it.
I know it's not something I'll probably ever talk to him about -- what young man wants to hear about breastfeeding from their mother, oh my goooood -- so I'm very cheesily treasuring and relishing this relationship for now, for as long as I can. I wanted to do this for him, but never reaized how much it would be for me, too.