Sunday, September 05, 2010

Mama, ooo, didn't mean to make you cry

Two weeks ago, we reached a milestone I never thought I'd see. I have breastfed BabyT for 11 months! 11! That's one month short of a year! When I wrote this, I never imagined we'd make it this long.

Around 4 months it actually got EASY, and quick. Easier than pumping and heating up bottles. So when we hit 6 months and I gave myself permission to quit, we kept going.

I've still never been comfortable nursing in public - I've done it a few times in a pinch, or at a mom's group where other people are doing it (lemming, I know). But T is way too big and wiggly to be happy under a blanket or nursing cover so we just nurse at home, and give her a bottle or cup when we're out and about.  Every time I see someone nursing in public, I want to give them a high-five for being brave and kicking ass but of course, they'd think I was crazy.

The weird thing is that I'm not planning to quit at 1 year, which I totally thought I'd do (if I ever imagined in my wildest dreams that I'd make it this far). BabyT is still allergic to dairy so no cow's milk for her. We started her on soymilk which she likes - I tried it and it's YUM.  We buy the vanilla flavor so it's nice and sweet.

Plus, September is going to be super-busy for us, with trips and parties and starting daycare, so introducing another transition might not be wise. So for a few more months, we'll keep nursing. Of course, where we live, it's totally normal - I've known tons of people who kept nursing until 18 months, 2 years, or older. 
I know a lot of people just don't get the extended nursing thing.  Heck, even I didn't get it until the last couple of months.  Someone commenting on AskMoxie nailed it- she said she had been planning to wean at a year, but when her baby turned 1, the mama realized that she was *still* a baby.  That's where I am.
BabyT is not yet reliably drinking a large volume from a cup and we've tried several different kids of sippy and straw cups with various beverages:  water, soymilk, watered down juice.  I think she's just not ready yet, and will get there on her own time, like everything else.  In the meantime, I don't want to offer her *more* bottles since we're trying to phase those out.  So nursing it is.   
I am phasing out pumping milk at home - if she needs milk when I'm not around, we've got formula to finish up, and of course, the yummy soymilk.  I'm really excited about not having to buy any more formula - I didn't love feeding it to her, with all of its special handling rules and how processed it is.  I do think it helped get her iron levels back up to normal, so I can't hate on it too much.
My next step will be to phase out pumping at work, and then I will do my happy dance.  Because there is nothing stranger than sitting in your office hooked up to a breastpump while trying to answer work email. 
I know we've been working towards weaning since 6.5 months when we introduced solids, but quitting the pump seems like an even huger leap forward.  Like many paradoxes in this new life of mine, I'm both happy and sad.  Yes, I'm actually sad to contemplate that in a few months, BabyT will  no longer be nursing.  Did I really just say that?  Who am I??


  1. As an outside observer, it has actually been very interesting to see how having a baby has changed some of your ideas. I remember a post when you were pregnant where you said something about not just posting about the baby!

    I'm not saying it about YOU, I just think becoming a parent changes you as you feel your way through what feels right. I thought I'd be a crunchy mom but when the reality of twins set in, I realized I was a middle of the road mom. And I had to make compromises parenting twins that I would not have had to make parenting a singleton, so I have a lot of empathy for people not being the "ideal" parent.

    That was a huge tangent.

  2. @LauraC - I think a couple months in, I had to give up on not writing about the baby. My life is pretty much all baby all the time.

    And yeah, I think the choices one makes are very much influenced by the situation at hand - I have the luxury of doing all this "crunchy" stuff I never intended, b/c I have only one kid and work part time.

    People with more than one kid, full time jobs, or (gasp!) twins or triplets need to think about their sanity :)

    But with everything, I've figured out that you can't "decide" until you see how your kid reacts. I totally thought T would play with all handmade, sustainably-sourced, wood retro toys. But guess what, it's the buzzing beeping plastic crap she likes best :D

    The same goes for all the "I never would do xxx when I have kids" statements I made before having T :)

  3. I never expected to be nursing Pumpkin as long as I did... and then I just did. I nursed her until she was 23 months old, and only weaned because I was pregnant and nursing was making me queasy.

    And now I'm nursing Petunia, who turns one this weekend. I'm starting to phase out pumping at work, too. I go really slowly, because I get (mild) PPD-like symptoms as I drop feedings. I don't want to find out what would happen if I quit abruptly!

    Breastfeeding in public is waaaay easier the second time around. I breastfeed pretty much whenever, wherever these days. I do prefer to use my nursing cover because then I don't have to pay as much attention to modesty, but Hubby has a distressing tendency to leave it out when he packs the diaper bag, so I'll nurse without it, too.


I love comments, so please leave me your thoughts. Thanks in advance!

sharing is nice

Related Posts with Thumbnails