Each night, sometime between eight and nine-thirty p.m., I get in bed to nurse the babies to sleep. I flop onto my back, a pillow-propped baby tucked into the crook of each arm. and the two little remoras latch right on. It is a feat surprisingly easy to achieve, since my breasts are the size of small planets, only rather squishier and very much subject to earth’s gravity, sliding obligingly to the sides of my ribcage when I lie down.
Up until quite recently, this worked well. But something about turning eight months old has brought out the nighttime gymnasts in my children. They latch on to the nipple, then begin to twist and wriggle like octopuses. They stand on their heads; they arch their backs; they turn upside down and flail adorably. Not so adorably, they grab each other’s hair and ears, stick their fingers in each other’s eyes, and slide sneaky little feet across my belly to kick each other. What is this, I ask them, revenge for slights incurred in the womb? They grin at me and do not answer (“Oom!” and “Bleeh” don’t count).
Last night Wren managed to roll up on top of me and then over again, so she was lying on her stomach on my stomach. Then she looked down at her brother on the other side, giggled, and PUSHED HIM OFF THE BOOB AND TOOK IT FOR HERSELF.
We may have to rethink this routine.