This week holds such a soft part of my heart, for the last five summers I have been able to support mamas in their breastfeeding journeys but for the last two it has also served as such a sweet reminder of the journey we are on. For those of you who may be new around here I am currently still nursing my 16 month old son. This journey has not always been smooth sailing and if you were around last year you might have read this post – https://bumptobabies.blog/2021/08/07/breastfeeding-levi-michael (click here if you have not) and read about what all we had to overcome to get here. I am so proud of him and myself and our support team. We have been at this for 506 days now and its second nature now thankfully. I write this to hopefully offer encouragement and reassurance for those still in the hard parts. It does get easier, I promise.
When we started this journey I remember being determined to make it to a year and then considering anything after that to just be a bonus, ideally I wanted to make it to two but with our NICU stays and everything in the beginning I think I was just trying not to set myself up for failure. Now that we are here however, with no end in sight I jokingly say Ill just have to wean him before he goes off to school HA! Ideally though it’ll be on his own time and I am curious to see when he decides that will be.
A little glimpse into our “nursing schedule” now that he is over one. We still nurse on demand as we always have but most days are pretty similar. He wakes up and asks for milk, nurses to sleep for naps and bedtime and then also for comfort throughout the day. He still sometimes also wakes up for milk during the night especially if he does not feel well or a tooth is bothering him. Overall I think we are in a pretty sweet spot.
We have also been fortunate enough to donate milk to five other babies and that has been the sweetest gift to be able to give.
Nursing a toddler is the same but also totally different than nursing a baby. I think the fact that the “pressure” is off so to speak allows for more enjoyment and relaxing throughout nursing in general. I am no longer having to worry about whether or not he is drinking enough from the breast because he is also eating and drinking other things as well so his time at the breast is strictly relaxed honestly. It is a nice and much welcomed transition.
I also wanted to note that I know that this week often gets misconstrued as to what all it represents and know that regardless of how long you breastfed (or didn’t) you should feel supported. That is what I hope most comes out of this week. If you ever need advice, guidance or just any kind of support, feel free to message me.
Ill leave you with my favorite breastfeeding quote and some photos we took to celebrate this milestone.
“Breastfeeding is an instrumental metaphor for how love works. In a way, you don’t decide how much and how deeply to love – you respond to the beloved and give with joy exactly as much as they want.” —Marni Jackson.