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Thursday, October 06, 2011

parental bonding of the highest order

For various reasons, I didn't get to breastfeed my kids. Not beyond the first few weeks, anyway. So I wince a little when I remember those shark nibbles hear breast feeding moms make claims that nothing brings a mother and her baby closer than the feeding the way mother nature intended.

Used to be, when I heard smug mommies claim breast is best my stomach would lurch. I wondered if I missed out. Worried that there really is a special bond that only nursing mothers can experience. That maybe my children were deprived because they didn't receive the highest expression of their mother's love.

Well, move over breast milk magnates.

Regrets be gone, ye of the dry breast.

Because I am here to give witness to a heretofore never revealed, far more powerful form of parental bonding. It doesn't matter how many children you have nursed or for how long, you have not thoroughly attached to your child until you have engaged in this most tender, most intimate, this pan-ultimate ritual of self-sacrifice:

Nitpicking.

Or as we nitpicking shrinks call it: attachpicking.

Whether you attachpick in your back yard under the golden rays of the murderously hot summer sun or in the comfort of your family room huddled under the harsh glare of a florescent lamp, attachpicking is guaranteed to bring you and your child closer than you could ever have wanted imagined. Your child will open up and scare the snot outta you share secrets of her soul and confidences heard only at the cafeteria table. Not for the faint of heart or the weak of vision, attachpicking is an extraordinary bonding experience.

Best of all? Dads can do it. No more will fathers be forced to stand helplessly by and watch their wives become the sole super-bonder.

So the next time your child comes home from school for the third time in almost as many years complaining of a scratching head? Do not flinch, groan or roll your eyes. Do not blame the other mom because she allowed a sleepover despite knowing her daughter had head lice.

No ma'am.

With gratitude in your heart and a nit zapping comb in your hand, grab your coke bottle 3.0 strength reading glasses and feel fortunate that you and your child have been granted the privilege, yet again, of luxuriating in this crowning achievement of motherhood.

Either that or see if this little guy is available:

15 comments:

hokgardner said...

While in the midst of one of our many lice infestations, I was trolling online for the sure-fire cure. I came across one doctor's site that had lots of recommendations, including viewing the time spent combing out the child's hair as a special mother-child bonding time to build precious memories instead of as a nuisance.

I snorted and moved on.

Kim said...

I have not yet experienced the joys of head lice, but I'm sure I will. Apparently it's all over in my area.

(And I nursed and it totally wasn't a great bonding experience. I went nearly insane nursing babies who won't take the bottle and was very grateful to wean.)

Mental P Mama said...

I couldn't breastfeed either. And we luckily missed the lice issues. I guess we are screwed....

Mary said...

Laughing way over here in Oz. Breastfeeding didn't click with me until baby number three and it only took her to nine months when she looked at me, looked at my breasts , laughed and drank from a bottle from then on!

As for the nit picking - oh the joy. Such a serene experience. Not.

Mrs. G. said...

We've been down this road before. Godspeed, woman!

Jorinde Berben said...

Apart from the insane burning sensation from the ointment my mom used to rub on our scabbed scalps, the memories of her combing out our head lice are very fond indeed, and much stronger than my memories of being breast fed!

Susan said...

I only managed to breastfeed for a few months with all 3 of my babies - I enjoyed it through the pain but didn't find it any moe bonding than bottle feeding (when I was holding the bottle.)

Youngest and most fair haired daughter had lice and she is the tender headed type - I think the picking was more traumatic than bonding!

smalltownme said...

With my long haired sons at ages 21 and 15.5, I feel so lucky that we've never had an infestation. We've bonded over brushing out the snarls, though

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

Been there, done that, have the flashbacks.

I was one of the lucky ones for whom breastfeeding was an absolute breeze and joy--but I still wasn't up for doing it much past the age of one.

NormalWasNotMyGoal said...

I can't stop scratching my head!

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Oh yeah, that's QUALITY time together! (scratches self)

Magpie said...

thanks for making me itch...

The Girl Next Door said...

aaaacccccckkkkk so glad my kidlets are in college...far away...far far away. need to go shampoo my itchy head....

Aunt Snow said...

thankfully, we never had that experience!!

Aunt Snow said...

Oh, and breastfeeding? Only one child, so I don't know what would be habitual, but I lasted 9 months with my son - it was lovely, indeed, but with me working out of the home, it was tough to maintain.