I woke this morning and felt like a B movie actress in an old-school Skinemax flick. My bed has been more Slip and Slide than Soft Core in the last three months. Now would be a good time for my male readers (in particular those to whom I am related) to just move along.
My post partum bleeding was average. But my hyper focus on doing and being everything to everyone meant it came back for round two. “You’re doing too much,” said the midwife. But I have a six year old and an infant and a husband and I am trying to justify in my own mind why I do not have much of an income anymore!! So that means I need to spread mulch and clean my ceiling fans, right?
And then I decided that jogging at 6 weeks post partum was important to my sanity. And the post partum bleeding came back again.
If that weren’t enough fun… my period returned at 9 weeks in spite of my frequent night nursing and the voracious day time appetite of my nursling. Lucky girl, right? Exclusive breastfeeding is supposed to postpone the return of your fertility.
I have a three month old baby this week and will be celebrating my one year wedding anniversary on April 30th. Do the math. I am plenty fertile. We may actually have gotten pregnant at the altar. So back to the midwive’s office I went for a new IUD.
In spite of my issues with my last one there is no better non-hormonal way to prevent pregnancy. Unless you count infant-induced abstinence. The new IUD brought with it the week long “spotting.” Have all the sex you want, just ignore the bleeding, right?
So that about sums up the leaking in the southern regions. Upstairs? My side of the bed has smelled like sweetened condensed milk for the last three months. If you’ve not ever been or loved a lactating woman perhaps you are unaware of this fun fact – milk does not let down only from the boob to which the baby is attached. Boobs are on or off. There is no fade. No balance, like the car stereo. Nursing pads have been my constant companion. And one must hold them in place with something. So add to the equation a sports bra, a nursing tank, something. All. the. time.
Add it all up. The exercise, the hair cut, the positive outlook, the husband and the newlywed status (for three more days!) and I still didn’t really feel like a Woman. Contrary to any kind of logic, all of this very female leaking does not magnify my Womanliness in my own mind.
But this morning I woke up feeling like a capital letter W Woman. I still had a wiggly baby to my right. And a bed rail. And a towel I had stuffed down my shirt next to the opposite boob and dark circles under my eyes because a certain someone woke up four times last night to eat (thank you very much three month growth spurt.) So why did I wake feeling more Miss Universe and less Mother of the Year?
I went to bed last night in black underwear and no nursing bra and a black tank top with easy access (for the kiddo! don’t get excited.) And I woke up dry.
Unencumbered by leak-catchers of any sort.
And damn if I didn’t feel smokin’. Who knew the absence of my own bodily fluids is all it would take? Sitting right now with my laptop perched on the arm of the rocking chair,drool running down my arm, in the clothes I was wearing yesterday I threw on so I could peel myself out of bed to pack lunch for school… I still feel unstoppable.
I snapped a picture this morning to remind me who I am under all of this Mom-ness. My stomach may only be flat when I lie down. And my stretch marks are still visible, even in the early morning light. But there is a hip bone under there. And a bare shoulder. And they need some attention.
* Shout out to Keller Williams for the title. All morning I have been singing Freeker by the Speaker to myself. Subbing out “Leaker” for Freeker and tweaker. Try it. It’s catchy. “Leaker! Right by the speaker, never seem to get enough. Priceless expression when space is possession. Like yeah, that’s the stuff…”
I just might bust out a windmill or a backspin at the grocery store today.
Leave it to you to go from lactation to Keller. Well played.