The day after Tye came home, my mom made me a cup of the tea and let it steep 10 minutes, covered, as the directions instructed. I could smell it from the living room- strong and bitter, tasting overwhelmingly of fennel. I suffered through drinking the cup, sip by bitter sip, and I've continued to drink at least four cups a day. Often, I'll brew two cups at a time, let them cool, and then chug them just to get the chore done. When we hosted play group, I offered a cup to another mom who was breastfeeding. When she asked if it was good, I didn't even hesitate before answering bluntly, "No."
I've been through boxes and boxes of the stuff. Let's say I average 3 cups a day, which is a slight underestimate. That's still 336 cups I've drunk diligently in attempt to keep my milk supply flowing. This morning, I decided I needed a break and went to blend the Mother's Milk with a fruity rooibos tea when I found, hiding in the cupboard just behind my rooibos, an even better option. Trader Joe's makes Raspberry Fruit Infusion tea bags, herbal tea loaded with so much red raspberry juice concentrate that it tastes like hot raspberry juice when it's brewed. I added one bag of the Raspberry tea to my normal two cups of Mother's Milk tea, removing the Raspberry tea bag after 3 minutes and the Mother's Milk tea bags after the required 10. The raspberry flavor blended with the fennel to create a tea that is actually quite palatable and, for the first time in 336 cups, enjoyable.
Why did it take this long for me to figure this out?