The World
Of ElleSee
by LC McDonald

April 13, 2012

Breastfeeding: The Final Chapter

Last night was the very last time that I breastfed my child.

A lot of emotions have swept over me in the last month: feelings of relief that I will finally have my body back; feelings of sadness thinking about how I have given my child sustenance for the last year and two weeks of his little life and will no longer be providing for him in that way; feelings of happiness that I will finally be able to be away from my child for more than a few hours and not have to worry about feeding him; feelings of heartache for the special moments of bonding that breastfeeding has created.

I know that I didn't enjoy breastfeeding in the beginning -- I mean, who does? You went through so many emotional  moments in the 10 months preparing for this little baby; you went through an emotional roller coaster giving birth to this little life; you have no idea what you are doing, and you are now tied to this child in a way that you never really understood until you started breastfeeding. You want to give up. But don't. It get's easier.



I do not regret breastfeeding my child. I am proud of what I did. I was able to provide for my son in a way that no one else could. I was special. I was needed. That is what has made the end of this journey so difficult -- I am no longer needed in such a unique way. Of course my son will always need me, but never again in this way. He will be able to survive without me.

The reason why I am sharing this post with you is because I found it really difficult to find information on how to start weaning my child, and I wanted to tell you how I went about doing it.

I took it slow, because, from what I understood, it takes a few days for your body to adjust to not having as many feeding times -- remembering what it was like when my son stopped the night feedings, it is not a fun time.

We started trying to give the little boy formula, but he wouldn't take it, so the doctor told us it was alright to give him milk because he was close enough to being one year old. It took about a week for him to start drinking the milk. He kept refusing it, and, of course, we were starting to get worried. It can be so hard to remember that children will eat when they're hungry, and drink when they're thirsty -- he eventually figured it out.


I got rid of the supper feeding first because he was eating table food with us every night, and it just felt like the right one to get rid of first. After that, I took away another feeding every 5-6 days -- giving my body enough time to adjust. The reason I hung onto the bedtime feeding for a bit longer was because he was being put into daycare, and I didn't want to throw several big adjustments at him at the same time -- I have also found it quite difficult to come to terms with the fact that it is time.

While I was getting rid of each feeding, I tried my best to stay away from the routine that we used to do before I would feed my son. We avoided the specific spot where I would feed him, and I would try to keep his mind busy with other things and get another routine going. We would usually play a little bit after his nap and then go eat lunch, or snack -- or whatever meal it was supposed to be -- instead of having a feeding and then going to eat.

He actually did quite well, each time that I got rid of a feeding -- although there did seem to be some moments where he would nuzzle up to my chest, and try to get a drink through my shirt. I would give him cuddles when he needed them because I knew he wasn't getting those moments with breastfeeding anymore.

As for what my body will do, from what I understand, it will actually adjust quite well to getting rid of this last feeding. Our bodies are so very smart, and they know exactly what's going on. The hardest part is convincing my mind that it's time to let go. Oh, the burdens of being a mother.





4 comments:

  1. Such a sweet picture of you two! My Mom breastfeed all us kids and she said it's the best way to go.

    Thanks for your comment on my bowtie post! Aw thank you... I got the greend dress from Belk :) It's true that it's a sad time when fun things end but I know that there's a fun future ahead too!

    SoUtHeRnPiNkY.bLoGsPoT.cOm

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  2. The one of heavenly thing whem moter feedig her baby.It is also good for both mother and baby.

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  3. Breatfeeding protect mother's breast canser.

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Thank you so much for your lovely comment!

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