“Baby Food”

I recently found, in the Jan. 19, 2009 issue of The New Yorker, an article entitled, “Baby Food” written by Jill Lepore. I got to this quote and it just about made me cry:

“When the babe, soon after it is born into this cold world, is applied to its mother’s bosom; its sense of perceiving warmth is first agreeably affected; next its sense of smell is delighted with the odour of her milk; then its taste is gratified by the flavour of it; afterwards the appetites of hunger and of thirst afford pleasure by the possession of their objects, and by the subsequent digestion of the aliment; and, lastly, the sense of touch is delighted by the softness and smoothness of the milky fountain, the source of such variety and happiness.”

No offense, I swear I’m not a genderist, but I can’t believe it was written by a man; in 1794, Erasmus Darwin (Charles’ grandpappy) included this passage in his “Zoonomia; or The Laws of Organic Life.” I feel like it so beautifully expresses the whole, multi-layered experience. I realize it is written from the perspective of the child, and I wasn’t ever breastfed, and most of us wouldn’t remember it if we were, but it reflects so well the feeling of total satisfaction and well-being that pervades every aspect of existence when a child nurses.

I really don’t understand bottle feeding.

And the gist of the article is how many women now decide to bottle feed their breast milk. Yes, I know: work, partying, vacation sans enfants. But I’ve had to use a pump (my first baby was premature) and lemme tell ya, it ain’t fun. It is the worst of both worlds.

Whereas, in my opinion, breastfeeding, you know, out of the breast, is the best and easiest.

Anyway, if you have the slightest interest in breastfeeding or children, check out the whole article.

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3 Comments

Filed under kids, society

3 responses to ““Baby Food”

  1. Joy

    I couldn’t breast feed my son in 76 nor again in 80 for medical reasons I won’t get into. Back then it wasn’t that big of a deal and after many, MANY doctors visits, he advised me that if the baby wasn’t getting what they required, I’d done my best and plenty of babies drink formula. I’m really glad it was back then because it’s such a guilt trip now if you don’t. It wasn’t like this in the 70’s.

  2. Anyone who would guilt trip a woman with a medical condition is an a**hole.

  3. Joy

    Thanks Elena. You can’t believe how some women are about this on some blogs I’ve been on. They want to tar and feather women who for whatever reason, couldn’t. I tried VERY hard both times. Although, I must say my boys are “relatively” *normal* LOL!!!

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