Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Weaning

I have been living in denial lately but I think I have finally come to terms that it is time to wean Jillian off of breast feeding. I am so sad to think that I will never be able to share this with her again. Every time I start thinking about the inevitable last feeding with her, I tear up. I can't help myself. Then I start to talk myself out of it. The decision is mine to make, I don't need to wean her off now. But I know I do. I know I should.

My supply is so minimal right now. I currently nurse Jillian once a day, if at all, because of my work schedule and her new feeding schedule. She is growing up and nursing less and less. Jillian is eating Stage I foods right now so for two meals of the day, we only use two ounces of my milk to mix with her oatmeal. Jillian is mostly sleeping through the night now too so I find myself only feeding her during the night once a week. I will only give in if she really cries for it. Most nights if she does get up, Jeff or I can usually get her back to sleep with some extra cuddling instead of nursing her.

I also only pump once or twice a day if I am lucky. I am just really growing tired of all of the extra time it takes to pump and clean out all of the pump parts. I am finding myself becoming lazy about the pumping. I am constantly putting it off. I really would also love a night where I can just go to bed and not have to worry about pumping!!! But then I feel guilty for having negative thoughts and feelings about it when it really is such a cherished time between me and my daughter.

My original breast feeding goal was six months, although around month two, I was ready to give up. It just hurt so badly, I would absolutely dread the next feeding. I would brace myself for the sharp pain each time, and when she did latch on, the pain was always worse than what I had braced myself for. It was terrible. I also developed a milk blister after the first month. At first, I didn't think that is what was causing me so much pain. I remember sitting through our breast feeding class one evening listening to our instructor proudly say "If you are doing it correctly, it will never hurt!" Because of that statement, I was insistent that it had to be something else. The milk blister was so small. I even took the time to visit with a lactation consultant. Surely, it was a latching problem or just a rookie mom mistake. Nope. it was the milk blister. It took almost a month for the blister to finally clear up, and once it did, all was right with the breast feeding world. I finally got to appreciate the benefits of breastfeeding. The closeness that I got to experience with my daughter. All of the cute little noises she used to make only for me. The pants of excitement when she was only a few days old when she knew it was time to eat.

I am so grateful that I was able to get through the pain so I can cherish the memories of our special time together. It was our time to really to get to know one another and spend some quality time together. I am so happy that I surpassed my six month goal by another three months and was able to give her some extra nutrition along the way. I am probably a week away from our last feeding together and although I will be devastated, I think I will also celebrate my victory by going to bed without a breast pump!



14 comments :

  1. This is just the post I needed. I'm struggling with the decision to wean my daughter as well. I would love a night when I didn't have to pump!

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  2. I think it's worse for the mom (physically and emotionally). I was such a mess when I weaned my oldest when she turned a year... I plan to go to about 18 months with my now 4 month old. I definitely know what your going through, shoot me a message if you need someone to talk to.

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  3. I weaned Emerson at 10 months because of my supply! Pumping does that!! I had a hard time too but she is fine now and there is always baby number 2:)

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  4. Girl...I feel your pain! Weaning Libbi was one of the hardest things...FOR ME! I had no idea how emotionally attached I was, until it was time to let it go. :( I just cried and cried. I literally had to hide the boppy pillow, because she would go get it and bring it to me crying....broke.my.heart! But, once we finally got over the initial hump, all was well. and of course, now she has no memory of our special time together (ha!) but i will always cherish that time! Good for you for knowing/doing what's best for you and your sweet baby jillian. i will be praying for you as i KNOW how hard it can be!
    (btw....i had a milk blister, too (actually THREE!) and it was HORRID!! who knew that something so so so tiny could cause such horrendous pain?!?!)

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  5. That's funny you posted this because I was just nursing my son tonight and was looking down at him and thinking how much I'll miss these sweet moments together when they're over. I too had a horrible start but now I love holding him close, looking into his eyes, enjoying our quiet and peaceful time together. Good luck with you as you wrap up this phase. Our little babies grow up soo fast!

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  6. Oh Karen, I feel for you! It is such a special bond and I dread the day it comes to wean. Good luck to you sweet friend! :)

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  7. I can feel the emotion through your post- it's so hard. I weaned my son early (3 months) because I was heading back to work and he didn't seem to be getting enough so I started supplementing with formula. I ended up quitting cold turkey and he's been fine. I thought I would be so sad to give it up but I still feel that sweet bond when I rock him to sleep before his naps. Good for you for lasting this long!

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  8. Oh how I know what you mean!!! It was SO hard to quit, but that's exactly how it was with Kyah! I was barely nursing her at all towards the end! I would say I'm quitting and then wouldn't! But way to go!! It's a hard job nursing so be proud that you got to do it for as long as you did! :)

    You're looking good girl!

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  9. Oh how I know what you mean!!! It was SO hard to quit, but that's exactly how it was with Kyah! I was barely nursing her at all towards the end! I would say I'm quitting and then wouldn't! But way to go!! It's a hard job nursing so be proud that you got to do it for as long as you did! :)

    You're looking good girl!

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  10. after i wrote my weaning post, i got austin to nurse twice! :) i have got to make myself stop by the end of this week. glad i'm not alone! beware though, i read that our hormones will go crazy when we stop! :(

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  11. I can empathize with this, but you are SO lucky you were able to breastfeed! I was never able to because I needed to desperately get back on medication to slow down my condition and it is not known how it would affect my daughter. There have not been any studies done because there are only a few other women in the world with my disease who have been able to have successful pregnancies. I know it must be so difficult facing this next step, but please know how blessed you are that you WERE able to breastfeed!

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  12. I loved breastfeeding my son, although it was a bit painful the first couple of weeks. I was only able to nurse him for 6 months. 3 days after he turned 6 months I was in a pretty bad car accident and had to stop nursing him due to the medications and shots I had to take.

    P.S.
    I'm a new follower from Relax and Surf Sunday!

    http://alwaysaroundboys.blogspot.com

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  13. I just recently blogged about my weaning experience as well so I understand exectly how you are feeling! You've done a wonderful job and should be very proud of yourself.

    http://inthebabyhood.blogspot.com

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  14. Wow, Karen! Kudos to you for making it work for you and Jillian this long. That's impressive for sure! Best of luck with the weaning!

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