Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Chick Wit: In milky paradise with puppies

Today, we're talking breast-feeding.

Not me, but not by much.

Daughter Francesca is 26 years old, and I nursed her until she was 22.

Just kidding.

But in truth, I did nurse her for a long time, though I will never reveal exactly how long, even herein. I've discussed my gray chin hair, my disappearing pinky toenail, and my nonexistent social life, but that is one secret I will never reveal.

Because then you'll know how creepy I am.

It's society's fault, because it can't be mine. Nursing is a great thing and not creepy at all, but society makes you feel like nursing is sexual, even though that's what breasts are for, not for making Victoria's Secret rich.

Maybe that's Victoria's Secret.

That society is stupid.

In my own defense, they say breast-feeding makes babies smarter, and I will remind you that Francesca went to Harvard.

My breasts deserve full credit, 50-50.

Although the right one, which is bigger, likes to claim 75 percent.

She's so bitchy.

So you learned something today. If you want your kid to get into a good college, grab your breast and get busy.

Hide the car keys, so your kid can't get away.

But this isn't about my breasts, it's about my dog Peach's, who has 10 breasts for only three puppies, all of whom are going to MIT because they nurse constantly.

Got milk? Hell, yes.

Peach gave birth to her puppies about two weeks ago, and I moved them all, plus my desk and my computer, into the bedroom, so I could babysit while I work. Believe it or not, I'm getting more work done than I thought, between cooing over puppies, kissing puppies, taking pictures of puppies, posting pictures of puppies online, then responding to comments about puppies.

The operative word is awwwww.

I feel blissful in my canine maternity cocoon, as blissful as I felt a long time ago in my human maternity cocoon, which is basically the same thing, but for the sitz bath.

Ladies, you know what I'm talking about.

Men, you don't know what I'm talking about, and count yourself lucky. Women have all sorts of equality these days, which is wonderful, but we're still the ones who become besties with the doughnut pillow.

You can thank us anytime.

In fact, there are plenty of similarities between puppy infancy and baby infancy, and I feel the exact same way I used to. I hang in the same room all day long in sweatpants, never leave the house, and don't have time for a shower.

OK, the puppies are an excuse. I'm a writer on deadline. Welcome to my world.

Also I haven't slept through the night in forever, because the puppies haven't. They nurse round the clock, slurping and sucking, whimpering and whining, and last night, they even started barking while they nursed.

Francesca never tried anything like that.

But she came close.

Every mother can tell you a story about the time her baby bit her while nursing, and I have mine. Francesca didn't really bite, but she did try a nibble.

A nipple nibble.

Or a nip clip.

The parenting books advise new moms that if you get bitten, you're supposed to say a simple, but firm, "no."

Like to a puppy.

But you're not supposed to shame the baby or hit them with a rolled-up newspaper.

In my case, I went with the simple, but firm, "owwwwww.";

Plus a rather long, yet creative, string of profanity.

Yet I'm to be forgiven, because at the time, Francesca had a full set of choppers. This would be an occupational hazard of moms who nurse long-term.

Dentition.

If you're still nursing by the time your baby has braces, you're on your own.

Even I draw the line.

And at the end of this sleepy but blissful cocooning period, just like before, I'll end up with a new baby.

Actually, I get to keep two puppies, all for myself.

So my pets will have pets.


Look for Lisa Scottoline and Francesca Serritella's humorous essay collection, "Best Friends, Occasional Enemies: The Lighter Side of Life as a Mother and Daughter," now in paperback. Their new "Meet Me at Emotional Baggage Claim" is coming Nov. 13. Also look for Lisa's latest novel, "Come Home." Visit Lisa at scottoline.com.

Lisa Scottoline Inquirer Columnist
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