12 February 2013

Weaning is Breaking my Heart

A year ago, L. was only a few months old, and my husband and I sat down and decided it was time to do something for ourselves. We had never taken a real honeymoon, having "eloped" to the courthouse on a weekday to say our vows. When many were skeptical, we just knew. Five years later, we are proving everyone wrong.

So why not celebrate that?

We booked a cruise for this April on Carnival's newest line, the Breeze -- and really are looking forward to it. But as parents of two very young children, we have been starting to prepare long in advance of the leave date.

And the hardest part on this mama? Weaning L. from nursing!

We had a rough go of it at the beginning -- L. was born with a really tight frenulum, and couldnt even touch the roof of his mouth with his tongue when he would cry. It made latching really difficult ... and frustrated him. Once they discovered he was tongue-tied, they snipped it, and it made a world of difference.

Other than biting, we havent had a problem since! Which has been a joy. Its a great excuse to stop everything, snuggle, and just relax for a few minutes. Regardless of whats going on, or where we are. [Yes -- I am a public nurser, anywhere, anytime. No -- you cannot see anything. I've perfected the art of being discreet without covering my child's face with a blanket!]

But now that the cruise is nearing, its time to scale those feeding sessions back. I know I need to. And we're making a lot of progress. But as we drop more and more feedings, my heart breaks into a few more pieces than it was in previously.

We just dropped our last daytime session yesterday. L. was clearly not happy about it. And boy, did he let me know. He wanted nothing to do with me for awhile all afternoon. Wouldn't snuggle. Wouldnt let me hug him. Did even want me to hold him, rub his back or stroke his cheek to comfort him. Finally, after an hour, he relented. But he still seemed to hold a grudge for awhile.

Until bedtime. He was playing with Daddy and didn't want to leave. I showed him a little peek to draw his attention, and it was all it took! He instantly came with me. His eyes lit up, and he gave me the biggest smile, and heaviest [happy] sigh. Like he had been missing his long lost friend.

And as I held him on my lap and nursed him before bedtime, the room barely lit and quiet, his body melted into mine. He relaxed. Hugged me, his mommy. Rubbed me and patted me, and looked into my eyes.

As if to say -- All is right with the world. Right here. Right now.

And that moment? After one of the worst day's I've had in a long time? Was completely therapeutic. Melted my heart into a big puddle of mommy-goo.

I can't say that today will be any easier. I know he will cry again at naptime. And I'll try to comfort him, the best I can. He probably won't let me, and will try to fight me. And once again, it will break my heart, and I'm sure his. With each day, we'll make a little more progress than the day before.

But that bedtime feeding? It will continue to heal my heart in ways I never recognized. And for that, I'm truly grateful.


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