Here we are back in England. Not quite as springy as I foolishly imagined it to be at this time of the year. But the excitement of being in London is never related to the weather, but rather to the mosaic of special people who live in it.
I was very excited to be around family and friends. This time even more so because having people around, as opposed to banana trees and coffee plants, meant that I could finally stop breastfeeding.
Pass the milk leech onto grandma or aunty for distraction when the dreaded suckie moment would approach. But the sucking angel isn’t only swallowing up milk from my breasts. She also takes large volumes of comfort. So that her demands off my tired boobies have become incessant.
One day, over lunch, Fintan’s dad, the most sarcastic, dry-humored man I know, offered a quirky solution: mustard.
Yes, put mustard on yer tits!
Ah! Ah! I go, with a concerned, dubious look on my face.
No really, she won’t go back a second time after she’d tried mustard.
Then I kind of remembered reading somewhere of some other woman having used tabasco to put her child off her breasts, and begun to take him seriously.
In that moment, a scene played in my mind of me nonchalantly leaning over Fintan’s dad during lunch, uttering a confident and polite “excuse me, would you mind…” whilst grabbing the mustard jar from beside his plate and dunking my boobs in it, under the flabbergasted gaze of the rest of the commensals.
It made me giggle.In secret though, like a Bridget Jones moment.I think the subject got changed by the time I came out of that bubble.
One afternoon though, Fintan’s mum and dad left the house and Camila and I were left alone in the dim light of their sitting room. She was yearning for her nursing session before her afternoon nap and I made the executive decision to give mustard a go.
With a furtive motion I left Camila on the sofa whilst I hurried to the fridge, opened its door, quickly scanned all the jars in it until the mighty mustard glowed on the cold shelf. I opened the lid and collected some of the promising paste on my forefinger. Got my left girl out and smeared its nipple in mustard. Then went back to Camila as if nothing happened. She was happy to see I’d make her life easier by pulling my boob out for her, and without paying much attention she went for it. It only took her a second to realise she was the victim of a constructive prank. She rubbed her tongue to soothe (or sense?) the papillae exploding on it. It must have felt like Rio Carnival parading in her mouth.
And once it subsided, and her crying stopped, I could tell she half considered going for it again, but then decided to sleep instead.
I did it one more time a few days later, and explained mummy’s milk has gone bad, that she is a big girl now, with big girl’s teeth so that she can chew food and eat like grown ups do.
She got the sour milk story, and never asked for nursing again (except before bed….) but didn’t quite get the part that she should eat food instead and seems to have become a breatherian.