Mammofest Destiny (with my mind on my boobies and my boobies on my mind)

Chatting with the mother-of-two-bestie about a mutual mom friend’s mystery lactation (mutual mom friend started lactating after holding someone’s newborn despite having stopped breastfeeding 18 months ago).

“Wow she’s materrrrrnal, for reals,”  she said in disbelief, but then added, “There are stories of women who start lactating when they found a baby starving. May be myth but I think the body is capable.”

FullSizeRenderOf course I know with my virgin boobs, such miracle is not possible. (By virgin, I mean, never given birth.) The breasts, these breasts, these beautiful mounds of flesh, really are that–just mounds of flesh a lover may caress that otherwise get stuffed into a sports bra. I am completely oblivious to the life force transmission function that they will never likely awaken to.

My shrink once noted the issue of kids, have or have not, followed you all your life. If you got past the age of child-rearing and thought you could socialize again with those who chose a different path, think again, there was now the issue of have-and-have-not-grandkids to contend with. Separately, she mentioned women had to deal with politics of hair all her life (cut, grown, straighten, natural, dye, etc).

Boobies are on my mind because mammogram guidance age is creeping up. My mother scared me shitless of getting one after she recounted her experience when I was ten or so. Come to think of it, my niece is that age now–just the other day she demanded her mother buy her a bra for her mosquito bites because she was the only girl in her class not wearing one. Mammogram–am I really at risk if, you know, they’ve never metamorphosed? They never fulfilled their destiny, you know?


A Perfect Neutral

Five years ago, I was tense all day. A good friend gave birth and everyone was stopping by the hospital to congratulate the new parents. The social pressure was mounting as much at the same rate of my internal stress–fuck babies! Fuck this shit! I don’t like babies! I want life before babies! Here’s another friend who’s leaving me! Why don’t I want babies?! Why can’t I figure it out already?!?!

By the time I talked down my inner angry voice, I had missed visitation hours, but I put on my best unbitter face, sweet-talked my way past security and swallowed the growing knot in my throat to open the door–there they were, the once weekend-warrior-stoners, holding in awe their very own creation. I peered into her red wrinkly face, scrunching, stretching, squinting, smiling. Her tiny hands and feet with perfect miniature nails, nailbeds and all. Life–the science class videos and metaphysics course readings all blurred–couldn’t recall who said what, but here, undeniably was a miniature being throbbing with it.

Of course the miracle of it didn’t stop the rolling tears on the subway ride home, streaming frustration and confusion about this thing called life I wasn’t part of.

Fast forward to today. Another dear friend gave birth after a very long and difficult conception with all the scientific assist money can buy. “High risk pregnancies,” we’re told, but brush off because there are 50-somethings doing IVF, but in her case, there were multiple complications, a reluctant C-section, and a full day of not being able to hold her newborn as she was tethered to an IV. I don’t visit every baby at the hospital, but I figured the mom could use a friendly face.

I knew this was one of the last newborns I’d see, given most of my friends are done with building a family. I had some anticipation–namely, I wanted to know how I would react to a newborn. Perhaps if they’re not screeching or running from one side of the house to the other, a baby would be attractive. I peered into the swaddled red face scrunching her nose trying to figure out this stranger. She popped her tiny little hand out of her cocoon and moved it like a starfish before making a loose fist against her ears. There they were, those perfect baby fingers, nailbeds and all. I matched my breathing to hers in hopes she’d relax a little.

But I was also trying to locate the connection with my inner voice.

Isn’t life amazing? 


Look, just look at this tiny baby. A perfect human being.


….anything?? I mean, anything????

no, I’m trying…I’m trying, but…. sorry, negative. No biological squeal, no jealousy, no I’m-ready-for-mine–nothing, absolutely nothing.