Do you remember all those Virgin Mary statues weeping blood or tears back in the 90’s? Well, this is how I have been feeling since embracing the wonderful experience of breastfeeding.
After three days from giving birth, as promised by mother, midwife and doctor, milk punctually started flowing to my breasts, blowing up my cherries to a modest cantaloupe melon size, bearing a similar firmness.
I admired them in the mirror, astonished by how they resembled a pair of implants I hadn’t yet paid for. So big and protruding with attitude I almost felt the need of naming them, as if they were a pair of Chihuahuas!
And then the whole breastfeeding palaver started.
Getting used to how to position Camila for better latch, endure the pain of constant sucking until I finally got the hang of it. I was in awe of her little face with her big not yet able to focus eyes wide open and wandering, and felt so smitten by the little sounds her sucking and swallowing would produce. I am witnessing the miracle of life before my eyes. Mother Nature’s marvelous plan of equipping babies with the instinctual knowledge of what to do in order to get fed never fails to amaze me. Just like when I was pushing her into the world, I am still feeling a bit like a cow (glad at the time she didn’t come out with hoofs) and having this precious little veal depending on me for milk is truly the sweetest feeling.
But then it’s when the leaking started.
Two big wet patches would volunteer on my t-shirt out of the blue, so then I quickly grab the mighty burping cloth and stuff it in my top to stop the girls from hemorrhaging milk. For easy life, I had not be wearing a bra around the house and therefore no breast pads so every now and then I feel a drip seeping through my top and get annoyed at myself for forgetting once again that I have become a milk machine, and when there is too much….drip drip drip..it comes out!
And even when I am feeding Camila on one side, the other boobie sheds tears of jealousy.
The first time I noticed the phenomenon I was in the bathroom, standing in front of the mirror staring at my hair noticing how desperately I need a haircut and there I spot with the corner of my eye, white pearls forming at the tip of my boobs, cascading one by one in the sink below.
Wow! All of a sudden I saw myself as one of those miraculous Virgin Mary statues.
Perhaps the abundant milk supply has indeed been boosted by the hen broth I have been having. Or even by the consumption of my placenta…
Placentophagy is for sure something that I have learnt here in Vilcabamba. Of course. The benefits mothers favour from eating their own placenta after birth are many. Replenishing lost nutrients, increasing milk production, curbing postpartum depression and slowing postpartum hemorrhage, to name a few.
Ideally you would eat it raw, blending it into a smoothie with berries is one way I had seen on the net. Some mothers grill it as if it were a steak.
Thanks to Ashley, I managed to pulverize and putting mine in capsules instead because there was no way I would have eaten it otherwise! It was fascinating to handle it and see the sack Camila had been living in for the past 8 months, notice the intricacies of the vessels and veins on its surface. I must admit I felt a little like Hannibal Lecter when I was slicing it up ready to get into the dehydrator…
From it about a hundred capsules came out which I am ingesting religiously every day. Can’t tell you what benefits I am getting from it. But I am confident that if all mammals do consume their placenta in the wild, there must be a reason.
At the end of the day, like the Bloodhound Gang use to sing, “me and you baby are nothing but mammals”