Ode to my nursling

“Every single human being was drummed into this world by a woman, having listened to the heart rhythms of their mother.”

-Connie Sauer

We nestle together, lives and hearts entwined. Bodies imprinted at a cellular level.

Greeting 2012 at midnight on January 1.

This is a fully embodied and multisensory experience. My lips on the top of her head, my nose in her hair. Breathing in her smell, feeling her fuzzy hair. Feeling her steady, vulnerable pulse in her skull against my lips. Sometimes I murmur or hum, mmm, so that my lips vibrate at the top of her head, and she answers me, “mmm, mmm, mmm.”

One hand cups the underside of my breast, the other sometimes holds my hand or grips my shirt or necklace, or randomly roams, patting my chest, stroking my belly, or pinching or scratching my skin. It often finds a place of rest near my heart.

I kiss her head. Nuzzle her with my nose and lips. Breathe her in. Breastfeeding is the real deal. The day in and day out fluid of connection and physical relationship. Body based. First habitat. First environment. First relationship—this is how she learns about relating to another, through my body. Through warm connection and synchronized rhythms.

Her head near my shoulder, on my upper arm. Her body in full contact with mine. Legs curl into me, resting on my thighs, or with a foot poked between my legs near my knees, keeping warm. Sometimes I pet her hair or smooth her eyebrows. I touch her cheek, hold her hand or foot or ankle.

We nurse.

Explanatory note: last month when I was nursing Alaina to sleep at bedtime, I was thinking about how I never wanted to forget what it felt like to have this breastfeeding relationship with a baby. So, I paid close attention to our physical alignment, etc. and when I got up, I jotted down what my heart had memorized during that time.

16 thoughts on “Ode to my nursling

  1. Pingback: Mothering as a Spiritual Practice « Talk Birth

  2. Pingback: World Breastfeeding Week Post Round Up | Talk Birth

  3. Pingback: 2012 blog year in review | Talk Birth

  4. I am in tears to think that my nursing experience will end and i dont ever want to forget this wonderful time either. You captured it completly.

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