1) During a morning kid bath — utilized solely for the purpose of entertaining and containing #1 and #2 while I got ready for the day — #1 pretended to nurse Mermaid Barbie. “I’m the mommy,” she said to #2, “you’re the daddy. You can’t feed the baby.” “Well, if the mommy pumps breast milk into a bottle, the daddy could feed the baby,” I remind her. “Hand me the bucket, please,” #1 demands of #2. #1 places the bucket beneath her nipple for a five-count: “Here’s the breast milk,” she says as she hands the bucket to #2, “Now, you can feed the baby.” Then #1 cradles Mermaid Barbie back to her chest to “nurse” as #2 pretends to bottle feed his doll.
2) #3 bit me… HARD. (Three exclusively breastfed babies, months of pumping for my own children and, then, solely for donation; I’m no peach blossom.) “My kiss it and make it better.” #2 offers. I thank him but tell him Mommy will be OK. #1 reprimands #3 for biting: “Mommy feeds you. No biting!” Then I fish two shards of wicker basket from #3’s mouth. The basket from which I had just shooed him away because he likes snapping apart the woven pieces. Lovely.
3) #3 is experiencing a growth spurt, which means he nurses All. Night. Long. When he awakes in the morning, roughly 20-30 minutes after his last feeding, he greets me with a huge smile and a happy squeak. It’s as if he hadn’t been suctioned to me for most of the night. He’s either senile or charming, I’m too tired to know which one.