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Today’s post is a little late getting up since it’s been SEVERAL months since Sadie actually weaned from breastfeeding, but I figure better late than never. It’s sad to me that I even have to preface this, but I feel that I have to. This is simply MY breastfeeding journey. There is certainly no right or wrong way and just because I chose to breastfeed does not make my choice superior to the mom who chose to use formula. I am aware of that. A fed baby is all that matters. However, I am so grateful that I was able to be successful at breastfeeding and do it for as long as I did.
If you’ve read one of my first posts where I shared a little about Sadie’s tongue/lip tie (read that post here) you know that breastfeeding was anything but easy for me. It was, in fact, one of THE hardest things I’ve had to do. And had I not been so determined to do it I know I would have quit and just grabbed a bottle. There was nothing “natural” or easy about it. We struggled hard for the first 6 months of our journey, but I can now say wholeheartedly that it was worth it.
My Breastfeeding Goal
My original goal was to make it to 12 months and then I would go from there. I knew I didn’t want to just cold turkey cut Sadie off at 12 months just BECAUSE she was a year old. I wanted her to have a say so to speak and be involved in this choice as well. So at a year I evaluated our situation and it was more than clear that she was nowhere near ready to wean. So we marched on.
Making the Decision to Wean
This was one of the more difficult choices to make. Honestly, Sadie still loved nursing when we decided to wean. Heck she would probably still nurse right now at almost two if I offered it to her. For me, I didn’t want to nurse if she was old enough to ask to “nuhse” or ask for the boob. At this point she wasn’t getting her primary nutrition from breastfeeding so I didn’t feel like it was too soon. Around 17 months I felt like we were getting close to starting the weaning process. By 18 months I knew we were ready. I wanted to take it slow and give her a month to transition so it wasn’t traumatic.
The Weaning Process
By this time Sadie was down to one nursing session per day, in the morning. When she would wake up in the morning I would bring a sippy cup of milk in her room with me. She would immediately ask to nurse as soon as I would open the door, so when she would ask I would nurse her. A lot of the time she wouldn’t ask as soon as she would see the sippy cup she would just ask for her milk instead. She slowly got used to getting her cup of milk rather than nursing, then began to expect that instead of her usual morning nursing session.
It is such a bittersweet thing nursing and weaning your child. The bond that takes place while breastfeeding is truly one like no other and one that I am beyond grateful for. All the pain, bleeding, long nights and more were totally worth it and I’m honestly looking forward to doing it with the new baby as well!
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And as always, because the condition of my heart is far more important than anything I put on my body, I leave you with this. “Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6