Today I am hostessing a guest post from a lovely mama as part of the Carnival of Weaning. I had all kinds of things I could have written about today but honestly, something held me back. Down the road I will share my thoughts but for now, I am going to go breastfeed my 3 year old baby and let you enjoy this sweet post.
As I look down at the gangly long legs and full head of hair that have replaced, almost by miracle, the tiny whispy-haired baby of yesterday, I reflect on our nursing journey. When she was still just a bump people asked me if I planned to breastfeed and for how long. ‘Definitely', was my response, ‘The World Health Organization recommends two years breastfeeding for maximum benefits to mother and child', I would inform them.
Then she was born and breastfeed I did. Through jaundice, cracked nipples, mastitis and an unexplained daytime-only nursing strike, we continued to work together to develop and grow our breastfeeding relationship.
Now she is 22 months old and the 2 year point that seemed so far away when she was still a bump is almost upon us. Now the question people ask me is when I plan to wean. There are the days when nothing goes smoothly and I feel frustrated by breastfeeding. Those are the days that I fervently search the internet for weaning tips while her dad soothes, calms or helps her off to sleep. Ultimately, those stormy days pass and are forgotten. What stick with me are the days when she smiles up at me with my breast still in her mouth and lets go for just a moment to tell me that she loves me. And the times when she has been sick or upset and the only thing that helps her to feel better is mummy milk.
I feel so lucky to have this special relationship with her and I marvel at how my body has grown and nurtured this little person for the better part of 3 years now.
I don't quite know what weaning will look like for us yet. I am contemplating weaning on a daily basis, looking for something that resonates with me. Something that is sensitive and gentle, and will continue to nurture her once the nursing stops. Intuitively, I'll know it when I find it, just as I have known which path to chose at other forks in the road we've faced before this one. Until that time comes, I will enjoy the ride while it lasts, because the morning when she doesn't ask to feed or the night when she falls asleep without milk are just around the corner. When that time comes know that I will mourn the loss of this relationship, so special it has been to me. I'll just have to be sure to embrace my new found freedom from breastfeeding.
About Sarah: I am a mostly stay-at-home mum of one amazing girl born in 2010. We live in Australia now, after moving home from London when baby girl was 3 months old. I feel like I found my life's passion when I became a mum. I crave information about parenting in a way I wish I had craved learning when I was at university! I can see the possibilities for my daughter becoming limitless as I try to be kinder, more generous and wiser and show her how to be this way too. Our little family of 3 follow the principles of natural/attachment parenting. In my other life I am an Occupational Therapist.