The Joy and Sorrow of Weaning

Motherhood is this weird mix of excitement over watching your little one grow up and sadness to realize he’s not a baby anymore.

Our latest foray into Mixed-Feelings Land has been weaning.

Breastfeeding has been a bit of a rocky ride for us–JD was born with tongue and lip ties, but instead of losing weight because he wasn’t able to latch properly, he overcompensated with a vacuum-powered suck reflex and gained a lot of weight FAST. So I had no idea anything was wrong other than the fact that my breasts were always sore.

Once our lovely chiropractor told us he had ties and we had them revised, breastfeeding gradually became more comfortable as little man’s latch improved. But he’s still always been obsessive about his milk, and I could just tell that weaning was going to be a trial.

Now that he’s almost 20 months old, we’ve nearly made it to my goal of 2 years, and it’s just starting to feel like it’s time. ​So I’ve been trying for several months to gradually wean him–getting into more of a structured rhythm instead of constantly being on tap.

We’d gotten down to three sessions a day: first thing in the morning, naptime, and bedtime. And then I felt like we’d hit a wall. I couldn’t figure out how to eliminate any one of those sessions, especially since nursing legitimately helps him to settle down to sleep, and he didn’t seem interested in dropping any of them.

So I’ve been really focusing on not offering unless he asks, and all of a sudden it’s like something has clicked. For the past 4 days, he hasn’t asked to nurse before his nap, and then last night… he didn’t ask to nurse before he went to bed. I was shocked. Like, “Who are you and where is my baby??” I seriously just wanted to cry.

But then we nursed again this morning and before bed tonight, and all is well with the world again.

Being a mom… What a crazy rollercoaster.

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