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Sunday, October 5, 2008


I had been having some trouble breastfeeding. In short, Teddy was startling himself awake, and then chewing on his fists and fussing. I had learned to interpret this as, "Oh, the baby's hungry. I must feed him." Except that he wasn't hungry. Clever Daddy figured this out and swaddled him. Since then, we've been working on expanding the two-hour spacing for feedings. Mommy and Teddy both get more rest and are happier.

But during the five hours of struggling to get the little one to eat (as opposed to fuss and stick his mittened fists in his mouth), while maintaining good posture and relaxed shoulders (especially tricky with no contacts in so you can't see the baby without hunching over), I developed a pattern of chanting: the Jesus Prayer for nursing and "Παναγία Δέσπινα" for burping, both from the CD Panagia With Us All. Now I'm addicted to my system for the most part.

As I nurse little Teddy, the part of his anatomy most visible to me is his ear, and I feel like I am pouring goodness into his body and soul.

It also helps me relax my shoulders and sit up straight, so caring for my baby is nourishing my body and soul as well.

"Nevertheless she will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with self-control" (I Timothy 2:15, from Teddy's Orthodox Study Bible).


Virgil Petrisor said...

So my first thought about this whole process was that, if Teddy decides to become a monk, he will have no idea why he is always hungry. I can almost picture him, prayer rope in his hand...
"Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner" and his stomach starts gurgling automatically, conditioned by months (maybe years) of hearing the Jesus prayer while feeding.

Mimi said...

Bwhahahahahaaha, oh Father, tee hee. I'm laughing out loud.

Thanks be to God you are evening out on the feeding thing.

Lisa said...

I'm glad you have found a breastfeeding strategy that works for you. It is such a wonderful and special time you get to share with Teddy. In fact, I love it so much, we still can't give it up with Mark. Enjoy it while it lasts.

Tiffany Antonius said...

Haha, a truly great way to feed the baby. First time ever I heard the Jesus Prayer used in such a way, magnificent.

Tiffany the Komboskini Girl