Monday, June 11, 2012

Nursing Update

Is it me or have there been quite a few controversial articles about breastfeeding lately? Maybe I’m a little sensitive because I read the comment sections, get incensed and then click through all the suggested articles that are linked. The TIME magazine cover sticks out the most, but there was also the one about women in their military uniforms photographed nursing. It has inspired me to write long-winded responses and opinions and then never gather the courage to publish to the blog. That’s true for a lot of things lately.

Instead of posting those, allow me to give an update on our nursing status.

June is 14 months old and still nurses. I know that this is considered too long by some…reading the words of internet commenters has caused me to find out many disappointing things about the human race, including that some people think moms get sexual gratification from nursing and that nursing past 6 months is actually detrimental to children. (*Shudders*) Mens' comments are just ridiculous because they obviously have no say in the whole thing, but womens' comments really get me down. Mom-on-mom hate is a real thing. How can we live in a world where "Breast is Best**" is a well-known saying, but with an implication or understanding that, "**Not in public, only under a cover or in a bathroom stall, and not if they are over a year old"?

June nurses before bedtime and sometimes first thing in the morning. This past week she has skipped the morning feeding because her Grammy is here to distract her while I get ready. We're not completely past it though...the other day I tried skipping the morning session. She drank from a cup a bit until she saw the bed, which is where the morning meal occurs. She pointed to the bed and made her funny question sound, “Mmehh?” I showed her the sippy cup, “Look, here’s some milk.” She pointed to the bed again, then looked back at me with the saddest, confused face in the world. My shattered, quivering heart and I didn’t have it in me to say no.

So, that’ll happen eventually, I'm just not in a hurry to end the whole thing. My PROs and CONs list looks a little like the following:

Extended Breastfeeding PROs:
  • Health benefits, as pointed out by the WHO, APA, etc.
  • Cuddle time with my girl who is increasingly squirmy at all other times
  • It's part of our routine, meaning that she knows that boobtime = bedtime. When that is over, I hope we won't see the disruption to the routine disrupt her general bedtime.
  • It makes me feel like we share a special bond
Extended Breastfeeding CONs:
  • Some strangers think it's icky

My goal was to make it to a year and I was thrilled to make it that long after our rough start. It's a positive in our household. So in conclusion, no, I don’t plan on nursing June until she’s 4. We're doing a gradual wean that looks more like cutting out a feeding when she and I both want to rather than wearing a shirt that says, "Closed for Business." 

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