3.14.2006

Tolby is Eating the Keyboard

I asked my mother if it was possible for a child to bite off a mother's nipple while breastfeeding, and she just sort of laughed--hesitantly, as if really letting loose would be insensitive. It was a low, knowing chuckle that spoke volumes: "But for the grace of God do I stand here now with my breasts intact."

I once read a book on breastfeeding that must have been written by a midwife smoking peyote on Ina May Gaskin's Farm. It said that breastfeeding babies don't bite; that their tongues, instruments of instinct, will protect their mothers from harm. I don't know who's more ridiculous--them, for writing it, or me, for believing it. There's more than one sucker in this here breastfeeding team, that's for sure.

Luckily, my fingers have borne the brunt of the damage inflicted by her early whites thus far. In fact, I didn't discover the two teeth in the first place until she stuffed my pointer in her mouth and clamped down. I was too caught up in the euphoria of the milestone to think in any depth about its repercussions.

All indicators, however, point to more on the way. Night wakings, red cheeks and drool. Lots of drool. Soon that jagged bottom tooth will meet its match up top, and God help anything that gets in between. I am beginning to realize ignorance is blissful for a reason. Experience hurts.

7 Comments:

Blogger Carrie said...

Little P has two teeth now. It looks like she is about to cut her top two as well.

7:10 PM  
Blogger GIRL'S GONE CHILD said...

good luck with that. Fu-uck.

11:52 PM  
Blogger Mom101 said...

i must confess, the tooth has made me glad I weaned. The pain she can inflict with just that little jagged tooth edge--and only ONE of them! Lots of luck to you m'dear.

8:43 AM  
Blogger Alisyn said...

Yowza!
Welcome to the club, Mama!

I don't know why the nursing books neglect to mention this -- in fact, go out of their way to deny that your child, if nursing past a certain age, WILL in fact, bite you. Probably more than once. And that it will hurt like a motherfucker.

I'm here to tell you, though, that it won't last long. A firm "NO" and a boob put away will get the point across fast. Really. It will! Tolby will move on to another equally annoying (but far less painful) habit soon.

Hang in there!

5:05 PM  
Anonymous reluctant housewife said...

Listen to Alisyn!

Yes, they bite but they also get it when you take the boob away.

Good luck!

7:35 PM  
Anonymous Amy said...

Perhaps the books were written by a past breastfeeder (la Leched?) that forgot. My brain recalls: I know both of mine bit, I know that it hurt, and I know that is was a major problem. But now that it's over, my heart doesn't remember. I just want to hold them when they are sick/sleepless/cranky/hungry/hurt... and have them latch on again. Treasure it.

11:37 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Chicky said...

I hear ya, lady. I went through it a couple of months ago when my girl got her first two bottom teeth. Now I'm going through it again with the top teeth. Alisyn is right... It doesn't take them long to figure out that biting Mom means no boob! Good luck.

7:29 AM  

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