48 days…as I write this, I have 48 days until I had initially decided to begin weaning my daughter from nursing. I’m not sure if I will stick to that plan, but at that time, my daughter will be 19 months and 5 days. Random, I know, but I figured we shouldn’t bring on the hard stuff amidst the holidays. So, I decided to wait until after the holidays and do it the day after my birthday.
Before I wrote this I thought…”well my birthday is a Saturday…should I really be doing this so tight to the workweek?”… Of course starting the following Friday will command a slew of arguments too.
I never thought I’d be this mom. My original goal was a year. I almost stopped many times. I almost simply had to, my supply issues were so hard. I respect any mom who does.
Somehow between power-pumping, a bit of nutritional yeast on most meals, and unfiltered beer, I made it.
I made it through nights I thought I was dried up forever, and through days that my supply was so watery, my daughter couldn’t take it. I made it through awful clogs and infections. Through the days I just wished my old shirts would fit. Through refusing to buy more nursing bras, as this journey was just doomed, before realizing it was all worth it.
I made it to my goal and kept going. Ironically, with a drop in my daughter’s demand for milk, my supply was enough. I was able to keep up and breastfeeding was no longer a stressful thing.
Around this time, my daughter began taking what we affectionately call “the doubles”. She needs both sides. I never actually feel particularly full anymore. I rarely even pump when I’m not with her. But we are balanced and we are okay.
On our toughest of days we “nurse about it”. The best cuddles in the world come afterward. Or a big kiss to say it’s time to start the toddling about. Will I still get these things when this phase is through?
My little one is almost 18 months. No longer teeny tiny. There are those who very clearly disapprove that we are still on this journey. My husband and I did think that we’d stop before my daughter could “ask”.
But we have let all of that go.
Now we are at this crossroads. Will my new adjusted goal be adjusted once again? If I let her tell me when it’s really time, will she? Once this has ended, will I still be her most important person, as she is mine? Will I still soak in snuggles morning and night?
I don’t have these answers yet. What I do know is that we will work on this journey together, just as we did in the early days and struggles. I will continue to tell my daughter that she is kind and curious, and beautiful, and a good friend. I will continue to encourage her to be kind to herself and others.
We will be kind to each other.
I will remember the hard parts endured, but also the strength we both had through so many months of uncertainty. I will use the memory of this time on our hardest of days, whenever and however they may come, to recall what we are truly capable of together.