Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Have all but given up on the idea of pumping through the night, or trying to do more than three or four a day. Contrary to popular understanding and logic, my body does NOT produce more milk with more pumps, indeed, if I leave it for six hours instead of four I get enough to actually cover the bottom of the bottle, or close to, and my breasts ache considerably less. I feel bad about abandoning the 4-hourly plan after only 3 days of it, but feel it smarter to go with what seems to be working! And I am exhausted enough, presumably from lack of sunshine and fresh air and a rise in hormone swings and too much chocolate and not a lot of exercise and thinking so much and reading excessively.

Start Day Five with a quick trip to ‘the outside’ to update this blog and attend to emails-- as you know there is no internet here. Against my rules to leave the space, but blogging is a part of the project and I do have people out there in cyberspace wanting updates, so that I am forced to cross the road and use the internet services of the computer store there every couple of days. Then a visit from a photographer from the Glebe, who has me sit in the rocking chair pointing the electric pump like a pistol. NO idea what it looks like, but we have a chat about his new baby and what I am doing this project for and he seems happy with the pix. (Finally get interviewed by the reporter at 5pm, who asks SO many questions! Was anticipating a quick ten-minute ‘who, what, where, when’ with not much ‘how’ or ‘why’, but it ended up rather in-depth indeed. Hopefully I am not totally misrepresented, but what can one do? It’s a fine line to tread. She did seem genuinely interested, and as it’s a local paper and not some total scumbags like SMH or Telegraph it may well be okay.)

After the photos my darling friend and mentor Y comes around with moon-cakes and poetry. We chat about Curdle and life in general, he takes some more pix to accompany an interview he did with me a while ago (sitting in armchair reading) and he performs a poem for me that he gave at the Best Western arts event last weekend. Then we get down to ‘business’-- he is to give me a one-on-one performance, just him and me and his photographer, one night in the wee small hours (around 4am). We make a tentative date, and I await his confirmation with eagerness. He is divine, I love his work, and some days I still cannot believe I work and engage with such extraordinary persons. I am blessed.

And the day just gets better. Watch daytime TV, eat too much, and then gradually more visitors arrive mid-afternoon. The first a girl I knew years ago in high school and churchy youth group (yes, its true). Haven’t set eyes on her in 15 years or so, and actually don’t remember her at all really, so it’s a strange ‘reunion’ but one filled with lovely exchanges about breastfeeding and the project, her own experiences of lactation and motherhood and milky lovers. Then Madame turns up with soy sauce and chocolate (bless her little cotton socks) and I am further excited by the unanticipated arrival of two delightful circus-cum-cabaret-cum-fetish-cum-burlesque performers of my more recent acquaintance. The five of us sit around drinking tea and wine and they all write amazing entries in my Memories book, of piglets and a kitten, stepmothers and adult nursing and a brilliant quote from Wicked. All but Madame leave, and then M-Bear arrives with beer and a lamington. I start on the stout, it all gets a bit silly, and suddenly M-B is wearing the christening bonnet, my white negligee and matching lace housecoat, looking like a giant bearded baby. I change into my ‘Madonna’ outfit of shiny blue dress and veil, and sit in the rocker with him on my lap clutching a longneck of beer in a brown paper bag. Madame takes some silly shots of him being burped by me, we get some dinner and then suddenly everyone is gone and I am pumping again before bed. A very pleasant bedtime phone conversation from a playmate far away and I doze off to happily dream nonsense all night.



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