Ep. 33: Why Do I Want to Eat My Baby?
February 18, 2019
In this week’s special segment, “What I Learned This Week,” Shanna and Laura answer the pressing question, “why do I want to eat my baby?” Also, Laura gives an update on week one with her newborn, and Shanna laments about her poisonous boobs. Finally, the new moms reveal their BFPs and BFNs for the week. Shanna’s baby is five weeks old, and Laura’s baby is one week old.
- HPA Lanolin Nipple Cream* Great for cuticles, too! *affiliate link
- Blitzu Compression Socks* These are the ones Laura used to help reduce her postpartum swelling. *affiliate link
- Windi the Gaspasser* a.k.a. the baby butt-whistle used to help relieve gas pain *affiliate link
- From a Deceased Woman’s Transplanted Uterus, a Live Birth A novel transplantation procedure may help more infertile women become pregnant.
- Wanting to eat your baby makes you a better parent Apparently cute aggression is a good thing!
- Cute Aggression and Bubble Wrap Funny video from Britain
This episode's sponsors:
Big Fat Positive: A Pregnancy and Parenting Journey is sponsored by BetterHelp. Join over 1 million people taking charge of their mental health. BetterHelp connects people with licensed, professional therapists in a safe online environment. BFP listeners get 10% off their first month.
With SewSafe™ magnetic closures, Simply Magnetic Me makes changes practically effortless. Plus, their supremely soft fabrics are cozy and sustainable! Get 20% off your order with promo code BFP.
Order insurance-covered breast pumps like Madela, Spectra, and Elvie right to your door from a certified Women-Owned Business Enterprise (WBE).
Shanna Micko: Hi. Welcome to Big Fat Positive. On this week’s episode, we have our weekly check-ins, our special segment called, Today I Learned, and we wrap things up with our BFPs and BFNs. Let’s get to it.
Shanna Micko: Hey, everyone. Welcome to the show.
Laura Birek: Hello.
Shanna Micko: Hello. Hello. Hi, Laura. How are you?
Laura Birek: I’m hanging in there. How about you Shanna?
Shanna Micko: Woo-hoo-hoo. I am exhausted, but we’ll get to me later. Let’s start with you weekly check-in. How far postpartum are you?
Laura Birek: So I’m in my second week postpartum. My baby’s about to be two weeks old. Things are going okay. I have a lot of help. My husband is home from work, so that’s really great.
Shanna Micko: How much longer does he have?
Laura Birek: That is a really good question. So it’s unclear. He has a very nontraditional job is part of the problem. He’s a TV writer and thankfully, right now he’s gainfully employed as a TV writer, which means he actually has an overall deal, which that’s a whole other story. But basically it means he’s been hired for two years by ABC Studios to be like a writer for ABC Studios and on top of that, he develops shows and writes pilots for them and stuff like that. But he also gets staffed on series. They can sort of place him on the staff of any series they want more or less to help them fill out their writer’s rooms. So he started on a new show right before Christmas, and then they all went on break and then now he’s home with me and the writer’s room is starting back up, but he’s not in there obviously, because I need help.
Shanna Micko: He has a writing partner.
Laura Birek: He does have a writing partner and his writing partner’s in there and the way writing partnerships work in Hollywood is that they’re essentially a two for one deal. So when you get hired as a writing partner team on a show, you get paid like you’re one writer and you split everything. In a way they’re still getting their money’s worth because his writing partner is there, but it’s also not really fulfilling the deal. Also, the show right now is only like a 12 week writer’s room. We’re kind of trying to balance. Obviously, I’m not ready for him to go back yet, because I still can’t carry anything heavier than the baby and that means I can’t go anywhere if he’s gone. It’s still a little premature to talk about it, but it’s sort of up in the air. As soon as I feel like I think I can handle things without him, I’m going to have to sort of release him I think and the nice thing is that once that writer’s room is done, he might be able to come back and be home for a little while longer and just do his sort of development work from home. He is still working kind of from home. He gets calls from his writing partner every day and they go over what’s going on. Anyway, that’s a long way to say I have no idea and it would be nice if there was something clear, because I’m such a people pleaser. I don’t want him to get in trouble with work and all that stuff. So I don’t know.
Shanna Micko: I get that.
Laura Birek: I just wish our country was more understanding about fathers needing to be home. I wish they were more understanding about mothers needing to be home, but I guess that’s the first step we need to do.
Shanna Micko: One thing at a time.
Laura Birek: I don’t know how I could do it without him right now. The point is I have a lot of support. I have him and also my mom’s still in town. I have a lot of support, which is helpful. But my mom has relinquished the night shift a bit begrudgingly. She really enjoyed just snuggling with him all night.
Shanna Micko: Oh my gosh, that’s amazing.
Laura Birek: She’s convinced that all I need to do in order to get sleep is just sleep upright with him on my chest. I’m like, I don’t think that’s recommended. But she’s like, it’s safe. You’ll know. Then I’m like, okay. We’re going to try to get him to sleep in his bassinet. But we are on night duty, which it’s an adjustment. It’s hard. Everyone was like, you’re only sleeping in two hour stretches and I was like, I’m only already doing that because of how uncomfortable pregnancy is. What I didn’t anticipate was how long the feedings would take in the middle of the night I think and he’s a pretty efficient eater. I guess I got copious breast milk, so he doesn’t eat very long. Generally, he’ll eat like less than 10 minutes and only on one side and he’ll be done. He doesn’t want anymore.
Shanna Micko: Oh my God.
Laura Birek: I know.
Shanna Micko: Sorry. That’s jealous.
Laura Birek: It’s humble brag left and right. Our friend Keri came over yesterday and she was like, “I’m not resentful that breastfeeding is so easy for you. I’m not resentful.” I’m like, “It’s okay.” She’s like, “I know. I’m trying. In my heart of hearts, I’m not resentful, but it is hard to be like, oh, so it was so easy for you. How nice?”
Shanna Micko: I’m feeling Keri right about now.
Laura Birek: I’m sorry, Shanna. The thing is to remind ourselves that we have no control.
It just so happens that my boobs are milk factories, I guess. I don’t know.
Shanna Micko: That your child isn’t being poisoned by your milk. Sorry. That’s for my check-in. Okay.
Laura Birek: Oh, shit. Well, now I want to hear what’s going on with that. But anyway, the length of time. So even with the short feeding though, the problem with being a massive milk factory is that he eats so fast that he really has to burp. If I don’t burp him, then he’ll spit up and it’s a whole thing and then you have to change his outfit, because you don’t want to put him in the freaking bassinet with spit up all over his clothes. I’m really tired, because last night I think it he was up for a good hour and a half, almost two hours for one of these feedings. Because I fed him, burped him, changed him. He got the hiccups, tried to soothe the hiccups then he took a shit again and we had to change him again. Then he comes back and by this point he is hungry again, so we go to the other side. Of course, he poops during breastfeeding so we have to change. I was doing that thing where I’m just doing whatever I can to stay awake and I’m like holding him on my boob being like, how do I stay awake in this situation? It’s very nerve wracking. So when I finished feeding, I handed him to my husband and I was like, “You have to burp him. I’m afraid I’m going to pass out in the middle of burping.”
Shanna Micko: Totally. That’s so hard.
Laura Birek: That’s been basically my week and the fact that my blood pressure with medication is under control and should resolve itself within six weeks, I’m out of the woods on that one. It seems.
Shanna Micko: Are your ankles still all swollen up and stuff?
Laura Birek: No, during pregnancy, I bought some compression socks thinking I was going to use that and so I wore them for a couple days and they went down completely. Actually, what’s really interesting is I weighed myself for the first time and I don’t like talking about weight. I just want to have a caveat that skip forward one minute if you don’t want to hear about numbers and that triggers you. I am right there with you. I don’t care about weight as an aesthetic thing. This is more of a scientific thing that I’m about to say. This is totally fascinating to me. Right before I went in for a birth I was I think 207 pounds and I weighed myself about a week and a half later and I was down to 185.
Shanna Micko: Isn’t it crazy how fast it comes off?
Laura Birek: I lost more than 20 pounds. I know like seven pounds was baby and a bunch was placenta, but I didn’t expect it to be 20 pounds that fast and it also made me realize how much of my “excessive weight” gained during pregnancy, because I gained I think a little over 40 pounds during pregnancy and everyone says, that’s too much. But so much of that was water weight because I didn’t just lose 20 pounds of fat. You know what I mean?
Shanna Micko: Right.
Laura Birek: It was all water weight and baby weight.
Shanna Micko: And extra blood. I feel like we talked about that in a trivia episode once: you gain a lot of extra blood. It’s just so much stuff.
Laura Birek: You sweat and pee it out in the postpartum period. It’s kind of amazing. I just want to say that, that made me feel better about everyone being like, you shouldn’t gain more than 25 pounds. If that was the case, I wouldn’t have gained any physical weight and I don’t care about that. I’ve got a little extra cushion right now.
Shanna Micko: I know.
Laura Birek: It’s fine. I like it. Anyway, in my sleep deprived state I’ve meandered. What’s going on with you? Tell me about your poisonous breast milk.
Shanna Micko: To the extent that your breastfeeding is going well, I feel like mine is going terribly still because you know how it started, where I just wasn’t making enough and she wasn’t eating and wasn’t gaining weight and thriving. I got over that hump and part of my check-in is that I’m not sleeping well at all, because neither does she all night. She’s like grunting and screaming. If she is asleep, she’s grunting and screaming in her sleep. She wakes up all the time and sometimes it’s because she needs a burp. Sometimes it’s a diaper. Sometimes it’s a feeding. I never really know. The doctor said, I think I mentioned it this last week, her breast milk is burning her butt because her butt’s all red and he’s like, just cut down on dairy, soy, wheat, eggs.
Laura Birek: Completely change all of your habits. I just think that’ll bring you comfort and joy.
Shanna Micko: Oh my God, I took amoxicillin. I mentioned last week, because I thought I had strep coming on because my whole family had it and so I thought that was causing her a lot of problems. She just sounds like she’s in pain all the time and that ended and she’s still doing this. So I’m like, what else could it be except what I’m feeding her? I just feel like this asshole mom that’s just feeding her poison and part of me is I kind of want to just give it up, Laura. I’m not going to lie. I just kind of want to get some real sensitive formula, give her some bottles and just be done with this journey, because I went through this exact same thing with my first daughter I should mention. This is all extremely familiar territory. My daughter had the exact same symptoms plus blood in her stool and mucus in her stool and so the doctor wasn’t like cut down on these things. He said, “Cut out all that stuff completely.”
Laura Birek: The little one also has blood and mucus in her stool?
Shanna Micko: That has not been diagnosed yet. I saw something in her diaper this morning that looked like it and I’m just scared to show the pediatrician, because I don’t want him to tell me the same thing. I don’t know. I’m sleep deprived, too very much so and spinning out and just having a terrible day, to be honest with you.
Laura Birek: I’m sorry, friend.
Shanna Micko: It’s tough. I’m just having a really hard time and I just want it to be easier and then I feel like I’m just a mom copying out. I know the beginning is hard, but I don’t know. So it’s just kind of my vent.
Laura Birek: I know what you’re talking about. I support you either way. I think feta is best and also I think it’s very…
Shanna Micko: I thought you said feta like feta cheese.
Laura Birek: Oh, yeah. You should definitely feed your newborn feta cheese. Don’t please. Listeners, don’t do that.
Shanna Micko: Feta’s best.
Laura Birek: Feta is delicious. Wait, you’re a person who doesn’t like feta cheese, right?
Shanna Micko: I like feta. I hate goat cheese.
Laura Birek: Got it.
Shanna Micko: Sheep’s okay.
Laura Birek: Goat’s okay.
Shanna Micko: Anyways, go ahead.
Laura Birek: Being a child who is not in distress and feels fed is best.
Shanna Micko: I agree with that.
Laura Birek: It’s controversial. I know people will do anything to get breast milk, but here’s the thing that I think is completely undervalued in the conversation. Everyone’s talking about breast milk and the benefits and are you setting your child up for better health in the future, better IQ, all that stuff. No one is talking about your mental health and how valuable it is to have a calm, present, not completely frazzled parent.
Shanna Micko: I will say I felt a little supported by the pediatrician in this regard this time around when he could see how frazzled I was when I was not making enough milk, when I was pumping after every feed and doing this around the clock. I think he saw that and that’s why he prescribed me the medication to increase my milk, because I think he did that for me and I really appreciated that.
Laura Birek: Did it work?
Shanna Micko: Yeah, definitely. It was a success story for me.
Like I said earlier in a previous episode, I was worried, because a possible side effect could be depression and I just decided to try it anyway and stop if I saw any signs of that.
Laura Birek: That’s right.
Shanna Micko: For me personally, it did not cause that issue. So I’m really happy and my milk has definitely increased.
Laura Birek: That’s cool. That’s great.
Shanna Micko: But at the same time, he kind of like just so easily says, cut out this, this, this, this, this, and this from your diet and like, blah, blah and it’s like, okay, I can do that. But it’s not easy, man.
Laura Birek: It’s not easy. Also, I don’t know how much evidence there is that that actually makes a big difference. I guess you could try. The problem is that you cut it all out and then it just turns out she’s getting older. You know what I mean?
Shanna Micko: Yeah.
Laura Birek: That’s frustrating. I’m sorry. Well, I support you either way. I know that people say that babies won’t go back to the breast sometimes if you supplement with formula, but maybe there’s a way you could try to give some formula before bed or something.
Shanna Micko: Possibly. I feel like it’s a whole game. This strategy that I’m forced to figure out: the mystery of the breast milk. It’s been a mystery and a challenge from day one, like what works? What doesn’t work? What causes pain? What causes her to grow? Then I’m like, but it’s not like that for everybody. Right? Why me? I’m such a baby.
Laura Birek: I think it’s that for so many people though. I feel like my experience is an outlier. Maybe I’m wrong. That’s why I feel like embarrassed to talk about it.
Shanna Micko: No, you shouldn’t.
Laura Birek: Because I know that so many people struggle.
Shanna Micko: Here’s the question.
Laura Birek: Yeah.
Shanna Micko: Does your baby scream and grunt all night long?
Laura Birek: No.
Shanna Micko: Your baby sleeps silently?
Laura Birek: Not silently. He makes little adorable noises, like little grunts.
Shanna Micko: Not terrifying terror dark yells.
Laura Birek: No, no, no, no.
Shanna Micko: Okay. But it’s good to hear that, because then I kind of feel validated that there is something going on that was not normal.
Laura Birek: She was doing that from the get go too, from when she was just little, because part of me is wondering if it’s he’s just so little that maybe things will change.
Shanna Micko: I guess it started happening maybe around three weeks, which is about three weeks old.
Laura Birek: See. Mine is just about to be two weeks though.
Shanna Micko: I hope that’s not in your future.
Laura Birek: Me too.
Shanna Micko: But in her uncomfortable state, we’ve been trying to solve this problem in many, many, many ways: different swaddles, different gas medications, probiotics.
So the other day we got this product called the Windi. Do you know about this?
Laura Birek: I do not know about this.
Shanna Micko: Man, the Windi is basically a butt-whistle that you stick in their butthole to release trapped farts.
Laura Birek: Oh my God.
Shanna Micko: It’s got like 2000 reviews on Amazon, like four and a half stars. Parents love it. We got them at Target. I didn’t realize they’re disposable. So each little plastic butt-whistle is three inches long and it’s got a little part at the end that you’re supposed to lubricate and stick in their butthole and I guess it gets past whatever tough muscle is holding all the painful gas in and releases the fart. We’re so desperate. We’re like, we’re going to get the Windi. It’s going to solve all our problems.
Laura Birek: There’s a product for everything.
Shanna Micko: There really is. So we tried it and I made my husband try it first. Apparently, we’re supposed to have a diaper ready to go, because sometimes it releases more than just wind.
Laura Birek: I can see how that would happen.
Shanna Micko: He’s trying to put it and he’s like, “I can’t find her butthole. I don’t know where it is. It’s so small, because she’s just so tiny and everything’s just tiny and this Windi butthole whistle just seems too big,” and I’m like, “Dad, can’t figure it out. Let me do it.” So I get in there, I’m like, I can’t find her butthole either. I don’t know exactly what I’m poking into and I don’t want to shove it in very far and in the meantime, she just farted on her own a few times. We never got the Windi inserted and we threw it away and we haven’t used any of the other ones. It was a big fail on our part. I just wanted to report that experience in case anyone else is curious about the Windi.
Laura Birek: Wait, did you never get it in?
Shanna Micko: I don’t think so. Honestly, barely I either just poked some skin or got it in just barely deep enough to even make a difference, because when you put it in and it releases air, it toots like a whistle. It’s supposed to let you know. We never got that effect.
Laura Birek: Wow.
Shanna Micko: We did not get the desired effect
Laura Birek: With the butt-whistle, amazing. Well, okay. So that’s a fail.
Shanna Micko: That was a fail. All this to say we have not solved our problem yet. I think she’s just got a ton of trapped gas that’s causing her a lot of pain.
She’s screaming and grunting all the time, having a hard time sleeping and I feel like a lot of it is my fault. I know it isn’t. But I take that on because I’m the one feeding her.
Laura Birek: Mom guilt.
Shanna Micko: That is where I am this week. I’ll check in next week and see how I’m doing.
Laura Birek: I have an idea, which is I’m going to get you on the phone with my mom.
Shanna Micko: You think? Can I ask her some questions?
Laura Birek: Yeah, she’d love it. First of all, she’s great and she has so much good advice. Second of all, she loves giving advice, because she loves being right. So we’re going to get you on the phone with my mom sometime in the very near future and maybe we’re going to try to get her on the show too.
Shanna Micko: Maybe we can even record our conversation. I’m sure anything I could ask your mom, our listeners could hear.
Laura Birek: Sure we can see how she feels about that. She might be a little nervous about giving medical advice on a podcast.
Shanna Micko: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.
Laura Birek: So we might just have to recap it, but I’m going to get you on the phone with my mom, because I think you need some Susan Winter advice.
Shanna Micko: All right. I’m up for that. Thanks.
Laura Birek: Shall we move on?
Shanna Micko: Indeed.
Laura Birek: So our special segment this week is Today I Learned where we talk about things we learned about that we didn’t know about before we had our little tiny babies. Shanna, what have you learned this week?
Shanna Micko: Now, this is not something I learned about my baby myself or anything. It’s something I just happen to come across that has to do with birth and pregnancy and stuff that I found really interesting in that I did not know was a thing and so I wanted to share it with you.
Laura Birek: Please do.
Shanna Micko: Okay. Here’s the headline of the article that I came across, “From a Deceased Woman’s Transplanted Uterus, a Live Birth.”
Laura Birek: I heard about this.
Shanna Micko: I found that so fascinating that a woman received the transplant of a uterus from another woman who had passed and went on to have a baby with that uterus and that’s strange and cool. It never even crossed my mind that that’s something that could happen.
Laura Birek: It was really big news about a year ago when this happened I think.
Shanna Micko: This article is from December 5th, 2018.
Laura Birek: Wow. So pretty recent. I feel like I heard about it a couple months ago maybe. It was a really big deal when it happened. I remember listening on… maybe it’s a big deal in the news outlets I frequent.
Shanna Micko: uterus.com.
Laura Birek: But it’s fascinating because we transplant all other organs basically except for the brain, I guess. But the uterus, no one had done. I think they were in Sweden or something. They’re in some far away land that probably cares more about women than America, but they transplanted this uterus and I think there were a bunch of failures at first. Of course, that happens, but then they’ve got their first one and it’s just fascinating because it’s a new sort of frontier of fertility.
Shanna Micko: That’s kind of the angle of this article is that it could be a way for infertile women to go on to have babies and what it also says is that uterine transplants from live donors have been done before and 11 births have come from that. But this is kind of groundbreaking, because it’s the first baby to be born from the uterus from a deceased woman.
Laura Birek: That makes sense.
Shanna Micko: If you’re an organ donor and you end up donating your uterus, it could go on to create life. That’s super cool and there might be more uteruses. Is the plural of uterus, uteruses?
Laura Birek: I’m leaning towards uteri. I don’t know my Latin basis. This is the wrong one, but I like uteri. I think that’s fine.
Shanna Micko: Anyway, I completely lost my train of thought. You guys probably knew where I was going, so fill in the blank.
Laura Birek: No, it is very cool and I think it’s really great for people who people have fibroids or had to get the hysterectomy due to endometriosis.
Shanna Micko: Yes.
Laura Birek: It’s really interesting. The other thing that I heard about it was that they are temporary, so they will transplant the uterus so that you could have the baby and then when you’re done having kids, they’ll take it back out. So you don’t have to spend your life on the anti-rejection drugs like you do if you have another organ transplanting.
Shanna Micko: That totally makes sense.
Laura Birek: Which is a very cool thing, because it is like a utility organ. You don’t need that uterus when you’re done having kids.
Shanna Micko: Brilliant.
Laura Birek: All it does is cause you pain.
Shanna Micko: I wonder if my insurance would’ve covered that fertility treatment. Probably not.
Laura Birek: Oh, boy.
Shanna Micko: But that’s really cool. So I just wanted to share that interesting little tidbit and that was in Brazil. I don’t know if I said. You’re right. The article says that there was attempted childbirths with uteri in the US, Turkey and Czech Republic, but those didn’t work out. So this one in Brazil was the first one.
Laura Birek: That’s fascinating.
Shanna Micko: Pretty, pretty cool. What about you? What did you learn this week?
Laura Birek: Well, I had this thing when I was in the hospital and I was looking at my brand new baby and I just like had this desire to like put him in my mouth, numb on him. You know what I mean? You just want to take his little hands and just numb, numb. Basically, just want to eat him. I want to consume him and I was like, huh? So I Googled and I was like, why do I want to eat my baby?
Shanna Micko: Oh my God.
Laura Birek: It turns out it’s a thing called cute aggression. Did you know about cute aggression?
Shanna Micko: No, I didn’t.
Laura Birek: It’s a psychological phenomenon. It’s called cute aggression and there was an article in the Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, say that 10 times fast, a journal that was published a while ago. It suggests that experiencing cuteness sends many people on a neurochemical roller coaster with their minds attempting to balance themselves resulting in bizarre, intense displays towards tiny, helpless beings.
This over the top response might serve as an important purpose to ensure that those of us who experience cute aggression don’t spend so much time cooing at a baby or a puppy that we forget to take care of it. Now, I’ve heard of other explanations for it too is that it helps balance. So you look at your baby or for me, a kitten will elicit this response too where it’s so fucking cute. You just can’t handle it and apparently the cute aggression where you just want to smooch it is to counterbalance that overwhelming feeling of love basically to keep your brain from imploding of love.
Shanna Micko: To keep you balanced.
Laura Birek: My friend Steve told me, we should mention that all of our guy friends are named Steve.
Shanna Micko: More or less. This is a different Steve than my husband.
Laura Birek: Different Steve than your husband, different Steve than Jen’s husband. This is Keri’s husband, Steve. Steve said that he saw a video once when he was in a psychology class. They gave people bubble wrap and told them that they could pop it however they felt like popping and then showed them videos of different things. The thing about the bubble wrap is you can quantify how many pops people make, right? Like how many bubbles they pop. So the study was to see how many bubbles they pop when they look at different things and they would show a landscape and they would just be casually popping a bubble here and there and then they’d show them a car race, and they’d just be casually popping a bubble, then they’d show them a puppy and they’d be like, essentially ringing the bubble wrap between their hands. So cute. Can’t handle, pa-pa-pa.
Shanna Micko: I get that. I can kind of imagine myself doing that.
Laura Birek: Me too. So that’s why I want to eat my baby. Don’t worry listeners. I’m not going to actually eat my baby, but I do like putting his little fingers. Don’t make me give him little kisses.
Shanna Micko: Now, I wonder if that’s something that a three-year-old can experience too, because my almost three-year-old got serious cute aggression with my baby. She just cannot handle herself. I say, “Gentle, gentle, gentle,” million times and she’s just like, must kiss. All her weight goes on her and kisses and smushes and it’s very aggressive.
Laura Birek: Maybe you should give her some bubble wrap.
Shanna Micko: I’ll see how she reacts.
Laura Birek: That’s actually pretty fun. That would be really funny. I’d love for you to video that.
Shanna Micko: All right. I’ll take some video.
Laura Birek: So anyway, cute aggression. It’s normal.
Shanna Micko: We wrap up our episode with our big fat positives and big fat negatives for the week. Laura, what do you have for us?
Laura Birek: I got a BFP. I think we’re on a BFP role right now.
Shanna Micko: What you got?
Laura Birek: It is lanolin. You know about lanolin.
Shanna Micko: Yes, they hook you up with that in the hospital.
Laura Birek: Keri gave me a heads up and said she really liked this one brand. Although I think they’re all kind of the same. The Lansinoh 100% Pure HPA Lanolin in the purple bottle. I had pre-ordered some of that and I had it. So it’s nipple cream basically, but all it is, is I actually knew a lot about lanolin before I got pregnant, because lanolin is basically the grease that comes off of sheep’s wool when you wash sheep’s wool. As people might know, I spin wool. I’m a crafty folk who likes to spin her own yarn and so you use lanolin sometimes in spinning wool, because sometimes when you get a fleece or fiber, it’s been over washed. So you want a certain amount of sort of grease in it. You want a certain amount of lanolin so that it has a good feel and you don’t want it dry and cracking. So I had lanolin and they call it spinning the grease back in. You just kind of like add the lanolin back in as you spin. So I knew about lanolin, but here’s why it’s my BFP. Not only does it work great for using as a nipple cream, which I’ve really enjoyed it. I’ve been trying to stay really, really on top of it. Like almost after every feeding, I just like slather it on and it’s going to stain. It’s grease basically, so it’s going to stain your nursing bras. Just be warn about that. But for me it’s worth it. But I started noticing my nails were getting so strong and I realized it’s the lanolin. It has to be the lanolin. I’d put it between my fingers and apply it to my nipples and then you’d have a little bit left. So I’d just sort of rub them into my hands and my hands had never been softer and my nails have never been stronger and it has to be the lanolin. There’s no other explanation, because it didn’t happen during pregnancy. I didn’t have that thing where everyone says, your nails and your hair gets super strong during pregnancy. Didn’t happen for me. This is all postpartum and it’s not like the tips of my nails got stronger. They have to grow out from the base. So it’s got to be the lanolin is what I’m saying.
Shanna Micko: Interesting. Well, I’m going to give that a whirl.
Laura Birek: One of those tubes lasts forever, because a little bit goes a long way. I’ve never had nails before. As you know, I’m a nail biter. But having a baby in my hands is stopping me from biting my nails and then they’re strong. They’re not cracking all the time.
Shanna Micko: Cool.
Laura Birek: That’s my BFP. I’ll put a link in the show notes.
I’ll link directly to the one I buy off Amazon, so people can get it for themselves. That’s mine. What do you have for us this week, BFP or BFN?
Shanna Micko: This week I have a BFN.
Laura Birek: Whoa.
Shanna Micko: I know.
Laura Birek: It’s been a while.
Shanna Micko: It has. It’s the SNOO.
Laura Birek: No.
Shanna Micko: At least so far it has not done the trick.
Laura Birek: Damaged my hopes.
Shanna Micko: My expectations might have been too high or maybe my baby is just in too much distress to really be lulled by this thing. But I would say that her sleep is the same if not worse since we’ve been trying it for a week. I mentioned last week that we rented it from a local company in Los Angeles, so I can do it month by month.
My plan was to try it for a month and see, and if not, I’ll return it. There’s something about it that makes me feel weird. The way that you swaddle them in it and strap them in, I like that it prevents her from rolling over and it’s a great SIDS prevention thing. But there’s something about it that feels weird to me. I don’t mind swaddling my baby, but the swaddle is super, super tight. It’s almost like she’s stuck in a pencil position and I feel like she just wants to move more than that and maybe that’s part of the reason. When she screams and grunts, it’s like she’s trying to break out of a cocoon. She’s like, aaahhh, and it’s just really strange to watch this thing shimmy back and forth and her head’s just like, bbbbrrrr. I don’t know that it actually calms her and it goes in degrees. It has four degrees of comforting and each degree is a louder white noise sound and a more intense shimming and the levels of sound are like one just kind of sounds like whales singing underwater really loud. Because I have to listen to it too, because I’m in the same room and it’s just not working. She’s not sleeping. It’s connected to an app so I can see her longest stretches of sleep and I don’t think they’ve ever gone over two hours.
Laura Birek: Damn.
Shanna Micko: So I’m just so bummed about it.
Laura Birek: Praying for a miracle.
Shanna Micko: Me too. But then I’m like, it’s going to save me like $500, because then I don’t have to rent it for the next few months. I’ll just go back to my bassinet.
Laura Birek: That’s true. Thank goodness you didn’t buy the $1,100.
Shanna Micko: Oh, God, yeah. I wouldn’t have done that anyways, but I was considering buying a used one. I guess I’m just out like $125, unless for some reason it starts to work in the next few weeks.
Laura Birek: We will see.
Shanna Micko: But I think her issues are from something else. Not from lack of being shimmied all night.
Laura Birek: She wasn’t crying out for shimmying. She needs something else.
Shanna Micko: I think so.
Laura Birek: I should probably let you get back to that little one. I should go check on mine. He’s probably hungry and I got the boob. The downside of being a good breast feeder is I haven’t really pumped, so he’s got to be on my boob at all times.
Shanna Micko: Got you.
Laura Birek: That’s a check-in for next week.
Shanna Micko: All right. Well, it was good to chat. I’ll talk with you next week.
Laura Birek: Talk to you next week.
Shanna Micko: If you guys have any comments or questions or anything you want to add to the conversation, please reach out. We love to hear from our listeners. Laura, where can they find us?
Laura Birek: We are on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook at BFP Podcast. We also have a Facebook community group you can join. We also have a website, bigfatpositivepodcast.com, where we’ll post our show notes and any direct links to individual episodes.
Shanna Micko: Big Fat Positive is produced by Laura Birek, Shanna Micko and Steve Yager.
Laura Birek: Thanks for listening, everyone.
Shanna Micko: Bye, everybody.
Laura Birek: Bye-bye.