Sunday, August 3, 2008

Nursing beyond one

Alternatively titled: 19 months of nursing, no end in sight. :)

Nursing beyond one. I never thought I would be doing it, but now I can't imagine it any other way. Nursing a toddler is a completely different relationship for us than when The Boy was an infant. It didn't happen over night, and it wasn't always easy.
First of all, the logistics of it at daycare were a complete mess, but I fought for The Boy to keep on with breast milk and won. I did stop pumping some time around 14 and 16 months. I can't remember exactly when any more. It was time. I still had some milk in the freezer for him, but he would take only water at daycare and we'd nurse when together. The Boy took to this quite well.
In February, I found this article, which basically summed up my decision to keep nursing.
From a physical standpoint, nursing is our time to reconnect. I know when The Boy doesn't eat, he is getting the things he needs from me, and nursing him now... well, he's bigger, but he still loves to nurse. He nurses standing up. Sitting down. Laying down. In a car. On a horse. OK. kidding on the horse, but you get the idea. I try not to stifle his creative thought, which sometimes means I have a toddler crawling all over me in strange positions, but mostly it is a lot of fun.
He can (and does) ask for it. First, he did so by signing milk. Then he moved to signing and saying "nu." Now, at 19 months, he can sign milk, say nu and say "nurse." He also points to the breast when he wants some. He even knows what it is when you put it in a cup, but he prefers to have it from the tap.
One benefit of nursing a toddler...especially as the toddler ages... is not only can he tell me when he wants it, but I have found that I can delay or skip nursing by distracting him if the timing is not right. Like grocery shopping. We do still nurse in public, and I am not embarrassed by it, but sometimes, I just want to grab my food and get out of the store! LOL!
I can only hope that my ease in nursing makes it appear like a (and the) normal thing to do for others, which will hopefully ease their minds about nursing in public and make nursing being the logical choice for nourishing a baby... and toddler. :)
So there it is... the end of my nursing story. Or more correctly-- my nursing story to date. There is no end in sight for us, and even though I am ready to put some restrictions and rules around nursing (i.e. night weaning is in my future), I am not willing to stop completely. Looking down... seeing The boy grin... breast in mouth... as milk dribbles out the side (from the grin)... that is a memory I will cherish forever. It makes the tough times easy to forget... and our nursing future a time to look forward to. :)


Rebecca said...

Here here! I second that!

Blacktating said...

This is so sweet! I can easily see myself and my son nursing well into the toddler years as well.

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