a tale of weaning gone bad

So I thought I had this whole “weaning” business figured out. After all, I nursed/pumped for nine months with Maya and then weaned her pretty easily. My supply was dwindling and I just pulled the plug (literally and figuratively). No problem. Within a day or two, my chest felt like “mine” again (as in, not twice its pregnancy/breastfeeding size). And I assumed that it would be a similar situation for round two.

What’s that line, “when you assume you make an ass out of you and me?” Definitely ate some crow this past week.

Continue reading “a tale of weaning gone bad”

bittersweet milestone on the horizon

Unless we’re blessed with a surprise baby someday, sometime this week, I’ll nurse my last baby for the last time.

It’s a bittersweet milestone, one heavily laden in emotions.

Memories of the sheer frustration of early nursing sessions where I cried my eyes out because he wouldn’t latch and stay awake, his little body fragile and unfamiliar to me … to a morning like this morning, where I can tell when my milk has let down by how his suckling changes — from frantic suckles to even, nutritive draws while he tucks his legs up to his belly and buries his face deep into the curve of my chest.

We’ve fallen into a nice rhythm … and it pains me to know it’s me whose making the decision to stop.

Continue reading “bittersweet milestone on the horizon”

Nursing, round two

I’ve never judged mothers for their choice to breastfeed or not. It’s a personal decision — and one that isn’t always a “choice.” I’ve always felt like an outlier in the breastfeeding community because although I did a combo of nursing, pumping and supplementing formula, I was never in one “camp.” I just “was.” And for the nine months I nursed Maya, I didn’t really enjoy it (which I’m sure isn’t what some women want to hear, especially lactivists!).

I was stressed out because my supply wasn’t great.

I was a new mom who “thought” she needed to go/go/go 24/7, so the idea of sitting still for 20-30 minutes seemed like torture.

And I just didn’t love the act of breastfeeding. I knew it was good for her and that’s why I did it, but for the most part, aside from a few fleeting special moments with her, it wasn’t what I felt connected us — which was confirmed when I stopped nursing at nine months and our snuggle sessions at night were just as intimate — if not better — than they had been while nursing. Continue reading “Nursing, round two”

Human Milk Machine

Breastfeeding might be natural and instinctive and all that jazz, but the mechanics of it are often far from natural … even if you’ve done it before. Each child is different and there are lots of variables that go into play with respect to the supply and demand side of milk production.

For some women, it’s a piece of cake. And for others – like me – it’s anything but. Continue reading “Human Milk Machine”

Easier Second Time Around?

I never thought I would a mom who breastfed. My mom didn’t breastfeed me and the idea grossed me out for a very long time. Of course, as I got older I came to know/understand the whole “breast is best” philosophy spewed by everyone and their mom … and figured if/when the time came, I’d give it the old college try.

I just never expected myself to last as long as I did. Continue reading “Easier Second Time Around?”

On Nine Months

The gestational period for a human being is nine months. If you think about it, it’s a LONG frickin’ time, especially compared to the gestational age of animals.

But when you take into account the fact that I didn’t even know I was pregnant til I was almost nine weeks along and the fact that, at ten weeks, we found out there was quite possible something very wrong with the baby … I never experienced the full impact of pregnancy — least of all its full duration.

My experience was tainted with agony and anxiety … anxiety that wasn’t really allayed until Maya–sweet and healthy as could be–was placed into my arms at 9:02 AM on Saturday, December 18, 2010.

And now, today, our little Maya hit the nine month mark. She’s been out of the womb as long as she has been in and, frankly, that milestone is mind-blowing to me. It hasn’t felt like it’s been nine months … yet at the same time, it’s hard to remember life before her; it feels like we have known her forever — and we have a lifetime ahead. Continue reading “On Nine Months”