I remember before I had Joe I was so nervous that breastfeeding wouldn't work out. Well, thankfully, it did. Very, very well. I was very gung-ho about nursing. I was planning on blogging about everything! Nursing in public, the challenges, the benefits- the topics were endless. In the 14 1/2 months I have been breastfeeding I have written a total of two posts.
I never really nursed in public. If I did I had a nursing cover and didn't care what others thought. Other than that there were no challenges. It is a bonding experience, but it's nothing I really gush over. Joe loves to nurse. He'd nurse all the time if he could. The only weaning I've done is daytime weaning (before his naps) and that wasn't a big deal. So there hasn't really been a whole lot of interesting things to blog about regarding my breastfeeding journey.
I know I just wrote about how moms shouldn't judge other moms, but I have a confession to make: I always thought that nursing a baby past 12 months was just kind of weird. I never thought it was a bad thing; I just wasn't used the idea. I don't know anybody in person who is currently nursing and all the women I know that have nursed in the past stopped at around 8 or 9 months- most of them sooner. So when I'd see pictures of a woman nursing her newborn on one boob and her three year old on another boob I just kind of thought, "Hmm... that's.... different."
And here I am, nursing an almost 15 month old toddler.
I would have no problems continuing this breastfeeding relationship. Except that I'm pretty sure it's messing with my fertility/luteal phase. And I know for a fact that it's screwing with my sleep.
I am not going to get into the fertility issues in this post. That's for another day.
I'm tired, people. I've been tired for the past 60+ weeks. I nurse Joe before I lay him down in his crib. Then again at 11:00. Then usually around 1:00, 4:00 and then 6:00. If I were co-sleeping it might be easier, but Joe insists on being put back in his crib so there's a lot of getting in and out of bed.
The problem is that we sleep in same room as Joe. That's how it has worked out while living with Ryan's parents. Ryan tries to calm him down. I try to calm him down. The only thing that works is my boob. I pick him up and cuddle him but he points emphatically to the bed mean, "Stop with this cuddle crap. Give me some milk, lady!" I am awake when I try to have him cry it out. I am also awake if I get up to nurse him, the only positive side to this is that breastfeeding makes him stop crying sooner.
I know the sleeping in the same room is the main problem. This morning after Joe fell back to sleep I laid there wide awake. I came to the conclusion that maybe it was time to stop nursing him at night and start the complete weaning process. It is time. But then a whole crap-load of thoughts came rushing in:
- What if he's waking up so much because of his molars coming in? If he is in pain shouldn't I comfort him? But I've read in the books (yes, yes, I know... those pesky books...) that getting up to comfort your child every single time is not in their best interest. That even after his pain is gone he will still cry out constantly for me.
- Maybe it's separation anxiety. I need to teach him to comfort himself. But I just feel bad leaving him there to cry.
- Since he's not eating a lot of solid foods I feel like it's important for me to keep nursing him for him to get nutrients and calories. Extended breastfeeding is a good thing health-wise. Why stop now?
But I'm tired.
I don't resent breastfeeding. I really do enjoy it; I'm just not WHOO HOO BREASTFEEDING ROCKS! (Like the photo above.) Maybe I was in the early months... but now it's just so routine.
I think the fact that it is so routine that makes me not want to stop. It's going to be a HUGE change for Joe and me. Ending this breastfeeding relationship closes a chapter on our lives. Yes, I was eventually going to stop nursing, but I just thought I'd be more prepared and ease ourselves into it. I always thought it'd be "OK, next month I'm going to start weaning." Not this week. Now right now.
But I'm just so tired.
This morning I got my Womanly Art of Breastfeeding book out to start reading up on weaning. I got my The Baby Sleep Book by Dr. Sears and was getting ready to prepare a way of using a modified CIO method. I was preparing to make arrangements to sleep in the guestroom and prepare my in-law's to get ready to hear a lot of crying and going up and down the stairs.
I was going to do all these preparations after Joe's breakfast.
And then I felt his molar FINALLY FREAKING popping through. There's another one right below the surface that I can see will break the surface any day now.
Well no wonder he has been crying so much lately. We usually don't give him Tylenol or Advil before bed because he's never fussy. So nursing was his comfort. I think it's pretty great that I can give him that comfort with my own body.
But I'm still tired and now have no clue what to do. I just figured I'd wait a few days and see what happens.