I’m seeing all these articles on breastfeeding as it is World Breastfeeding Week and it reminds me that the last time I breastfed my baby was exactly one year ago today. We had weaned him at a year and a half old; felt too late yet too early all at once.
I wasn’t ready to let go of the snuggles, the sweet bonding, the way he looked into my eyes.
Yet I was sooo ready to let go of the soreness, the pumping if I was not with him, the stage of being a mother that is in constant discussion and observance.
People were constantly asking me what I ate if he had gas, wondering if I should take that sip of wine when I was away from him, letting me know that it was inappropriate to unbutton my shirt in public, telling me he is too old or young to stop, discussing my baby’s growth and blaming (or not blaming) my milk, giving me pointers on how to make more milk and so much more.
But there is something about the fact that he is most likely my last one. My last baby. So today, when my big 2.5 year old roars and stomps like a dinosaur, I remember the days I nursed him. As he snuggles up to me at night nowadays, I hold his body close and think of the little one he was not too long ago when we had that time together.
Oh and what a time it was.
To my fellow mommas who are breastfeeding, I know it can feel crazy in the world that doesn’t always shine positivity on what you are going through.
Yes, I know what you are going through.
The ups and the downs and all the in betweens. One day it is all sunshine and smiles as your baby latches on and has amazing meals and you feel content as a momma. The next day she is fussing and crying and you don’t know if it’s her teeth or her tummy or what you ate and you want to cry right along with her. Maybe you do cry.
I remember a friend telling me she supplemented with formula for a week during her infant’s growth spurt and she not only whispered formula but spelled it out, like she was afraid that the breastfeeding authorities were tapping her phone line.
There is so much judgement on this beautiful process that is just natural and whole and can be different for a mother with twins to the one whose milk came in abundance right away to a mother who has to pump every night at 3 am to keep up supply to the one that is struggling to feed her baby because of inverted nipples.
However long you nurse for, you will have those moments though. Where you are holding your little one, Boppy around your waist and his little palm wrapped around your finger…rocking in your chair and gazing at your baby. Time stands still.
Life. Love. Joy.
These words flood your heart and it’s what the journey is all about.
As a momma who can look back, I can tell you to keep it up and let love win each time. In doubt, in frustration, in the times you aren’t sure if you should…listen to that heart of yours and don’t regret a thing.
I promise it’s worth it.