Breast-milk Jewelry (click for full article)
This topic recently came up on my mom’s board. Artists have discovered a technique that turns the proteins in milk (in this case, human milk) into a moldable plastic.
Question: Would you do this?
Since our adoption was on “short-notice,” I was not able to breast feed The Little Lady. This is one mothering experience I wish I could have experienced — there is something so intimate, primal, eternal in that act. No matter the scientific, technological or scientific advances, we women still have this one unique ability that connects us and puts us on the same level as all women who came before us.
But, would I save the “mother’s milk” (my milk) in a solid, artistic form? I’m honestly not sure. I keep trying to remind myself that it is no different than substances made from animals; bones, hides, furs have been used and accepted for centuries as beautiful objects. Yet, there just seems something odd about it. What would my child think of it? Would it become a treasured heirloom passed on through my descendants? Or would it get tossed in the basement as “Crazy Grandma Rachel’s milk-stone?”
But is it any different than saving your baby’s curls from the first hair cut? Practically every mom does that (I’m planning on it, if Miss Thing will ever decide to grow some hair!!!!). Of course, what happens to those locks? They don’t exactly make it as treasure forever. Just ask my sister. A few weeks ago, during my trip back home to Oklahoma, we found a tattered envelope sticking out of an open cardboard box. The box was old; it was obvious to even the most casual of observers that it had been a favorite night-spot for mice. In fact, when the envelope first caught my eye, I thought I saw the remains of a mouse in it. But, no — that was just the remains of Hannah’s long ago haircut. Twenty years later, those cherished baby locks were collecting dust and mouse DNA. I don’t think those curls will end up getting passed on to Hannah’s kids.
I digress. Back to the topic; I guess in the end it doesn’t really matter (to quote Linkin Park) if I find it a bit weird. I don’t have the option of creating such a piece, but I am planning on saving things other people will probably find weird. That’s just the right we have as mamas, I guess. We can treasure whatever the heck we want to.