Thursday, September 6, 2012

Udder Classic

Since bringing Isaac home from the hospital, there has been an ongoing dialogue about breastfeeding in this house. Though we try to remain tactful and careful about our wording, most conversations are completely uncensored.

See, a long time ago, maybe over a year ago now, Elijah discovered nipples. I say 'discovered' because it was literally as if he had never noticed them before. He was in the bath tub and suddenly asked, "Hey! What are these?" as he looked down at his chest.

I stuttered, not really knowing how to respond other than honestly, so I answered, "Uh...well...nipples."

He then noticed them on Chastity too, because they bathe together, and so the question turned to, "Do you have them too, Mommy?"


"Can I see them?"


"Does Daddy have them too?"


"Oh. Yeah. I have seen his," he said, matter-of-factly.

We then had the conversation about why boys can take their shirts off and girls cannot.

Once, after that, Elijah used the word "nipple" in a random context, just goofing off, and we both protested. I could just picture my child singing a song about nipples in church. After all, after Elijah discovered that boys have a penis and girls do not, he spent a couple of months asking the men in our family,"Do you have a penis?"

"Don't talk about nipples!" Jelani and I both yelled to him, and so, being the good listener that he is, he didn't bring it up again.

But now, the topic has resurfaced. When I first brought Isaac home, and he was still learning how to latch and stay latched to me for nursing, I had difficulty using the udder cover I had purchased specifically for keeping Elijah and Chastity out of my business. Yes, it's a blanket that covers the breasts (and baby) while breastfeeding, and it is, in fact, called an udder cover. Do I like the fact that my breasts are now thought of in the same context as the udders of a cow? No, I do not, but can we just move on? Thanks.

Anyway, quite tired of the battle of trying to keep hem...udder cover over us while Isaac thrashed and lost his latch repeatedly, I stopped using it for a day or two just so that we could get the hang of this first. Hoping to keep the kids out of my face about it, I announced that I needed a little privacy, at least until the baby was on and eating, and that they should stay on the floor playing. Well done. That was like announcing to some middle school boys that you were going to take your shirt off, but that they shouldn't look. The pull of curiosity was too strong. Elijah was trying very hard to be a gentlemen, so he would cover his eyes when he talked to me, but Chastity ran right over to me and leaned over my lap while I was trying to feed the baby.

Looking somewhat disgusted, Chastity exclaimed, "Mommy! Why did you put that in his mouth?!"

I explained that that was where the baby got his milk from.

Elijah then chimed in, having seen his cousin take a bottle, "No, babies get milk from bottles."

"Well, some babies do," I responded.

Elijah looked conflicted. "But Isaac gets it from your...your...?" He trailed off, not knowing what to call them.

I didn't finish his sentence, but Chastity did, "Nipples!" she proclaimed.

"We're not supposed to talk about nipples, Chastity!" Elijah yelled.

Oh boy. I explained to him that it was ok, and that Chastity wasn't exactly wrong. Jelani was laughing.

"Why are you laughing, Daddy?" Elijah asked. "Is it because I said, 'nipples?'"

Neither one of us could control ourselves at that point, and I had to come to terms with the fact that my children, as well behaved as they may be, just might be the children in church to inform everyone about nipples.


  1. Lol! We've had a similar conversation many times but replace the word nipple with boob. I don't bother with a cover when with family. Actually, boob was John's 2nd word as a baby!Haha!

  2. Forgot to mention, both older kids here & there say stuff to her like, "I hope your dinner is delicious" haha!