Boob talk


Breastfeeding really bloody hurts when you first try it. Newborn babies feed for hours on end. If you want to breastfeed your newborn you are going to need a lot of help because it involves much sitting down while they clamp on and feed for an absurd amount of hours. It’s very ‘bonding’ or very restrictive depending on how you look at it. If you have other children and want to breastfeed a newborn, and you don’t have anyone to help you, I seriously don’t know how any of you do it. If you do, you are absolute champions.

It’s ok to breastfeed after a glass of wine. It’s ok to breastfeed when you are on antidepressants. It’s ok to drink coffee and breastfeed. It’s ok if when you try to pump milk nothing comes out. It doesn’t mean your supply is low, it means your boobs don’t like pumps. It’s ok if you hate pumping. If you are a pumping icon, good for you! Pumping can be really handy, because if you breastfeed and you want to get a break, it is great that you can hand a bottle and a baby to someone. Anyone. Go get some sleep.

It’s ok to breastfeed and also give your baby formula. It’s ok to breastfeed and let your baby have a dummy, too. After you’ve breastfed your newborn for six weeks or so, suddenly the unsustainable never-ending feeds ease off and feeding can become much more enjoyable, as you get a break in between. It’s ok to breastfeed in bed with your baby snuggled next to you and if you drift off to sleep while you are doing so, that’s ok too.

It’s ok to flash your boobs in public so you can breastfeed. On that, after you’ve breastfed more than one child for an extended period, your boobs are probably not going to look great. (Visual: nipples can stretch.) It’s ok to say that you don’t particularly like breastfeeding. It’s ok to say you love it. It’s ok to breastfeed for a short time and then switch to formula. It’s ok not to even try breastfeeding at all. It’s ok to feed with formula.

As long as YOU are ok, it’s ALL ok.



The first feed after they are born. When they clamp on to your nipple like tiny crabs resurrected from the sand.

The endless (they end) feeds of the first six weeks, when they grow from minuscule buds into blossoming babies. The bleeding. The cracked nipples. The exquisite pain (it goes). The feeding when they are hungry, when they are tired, when they just want to be close. When you just want to be close.

The night feeds. Suckling milk all through the long night. Gulping, drinking. Growing. The exhaustion: Get off my boob I can not feed you for another second. The deep joy: I could feed you forever. Don’t grow.

The blind hunger of an infant. You can feel their primal urge. Come on! Feed me! Any breast will do! The older baby, looking up at you, catching your eye. Smiling. Trying to chat in their baby way between feeds. Love.

And my 18-month-old, my last baby. He’s weaning. The feeds are dropping rapidly. My body is folding back into itself, finally becoming mine again, its liquids flowing through intricate portals and vessels – easing back to nourishing one body, instead of two.

No more babies to feed. I’m milked.