Wednesday, September 23, 2009

And So We Continue

So James is now one year old, and I'm still nursing him. Not a big deal, but I give it a few more months and then it'll begin to get "weird" for some people.

Questions will start.

I'll start to get the "You're still doing that!?!?!" look.

I remember having dinner at someone's home when Jack was 15 months old. He started to fuss and I knew that he wanted to nurse. It was myself and two other women so I figured I'd just nurse him at the table while we enjoyed our dinner.

Why not?

"Oh wow. How much longer are you going to be doing that?"

"Ummm I don't know. He doesn't nurse very long. Five minutes or so."

"No, I mean that. Nursing him period".

He was 15 months old, and still very much a baby in my mind. He had no other "lovey" so nursing was more than just a source of food, but a place of comfort and security. I didn't see it as strange, but it was very obvious that they did.

That was my first encounter with nursing an "older" child, and from that point on I slowly made my way into the closet with those who continue to nurse as long as their child desires.

People, not knowing that I was still nursing Jack, would make comments about those who nurse past the age of one.

I've heard it called weird, strange, and just plain wrong.

I find it so interesting how the breastfeeding issue is approached.

You're a "bad" mom if you choose not to nurse.

The pressure put on mothers to nurse is tremendous.

People give kudos to those who can make it to six weeks.

Once you have hit six months you deserve some sort of reward.

Make it a year and you have done just what "they" recommend. In fact, you make up a very small percentage of mothers.

Push it past a year and things quickly change.

Everything that was so wonderful, natural, the best for baby, etc., begins to be viewed in a different light.

Why?

Who says that one is the magic number?

The perfect age to wean?

I'd love your thoughts.

8 comments:

Amy said...

I pumped with Carson for 4 wks due to his bilateral cleft lip/pallete. With Gage it was 10 1/2 months and it was mutual for us both to stop. With Toby I made it 8 weeks and hung it up because he hurt me so bad. It is all up to you and James. I am all for it as long as you can...it is a special bond and once you stop you will never have it back. My husband supported me and that is all I cared about...who cares with other people think. People may say "you are strange" but as my girlfriend and I say..."everybody is strange." So you don't need to worry about "others" and carry on with what you, your husband, and James think is the best plan! That is awesome that you do still nurse because it takes major detemination because it is not so convenient all the time! well...that is my opinion! amy

SarahHub said...

When I was first pregnant with my daughter, I was so nervous about breastfeeding. Even more nervous about it than labor! I decided to give it a try and see what happened...

Well, I nursed her for 20 months, and it was hard to even stop then. It was such a great experience for both of us!

I know a lot of people were freaked out that I still nursed past her first birthday. My mom, particularly, was disturbed when my daughter asked to nurse!

I think you just have to have confidence that you're doing the right thing for you and your child. No one else is walking in your shoes, and Mommy really does know best! Kudos to you for sticking with it, even if others don't agree!

Kate said...

I found you from Steph's Babywearing blog... :)

My first was 14 months when I weaned. I weaned her when I found out I was expecting just b/c I thought it was best for my body. I wish I would have thought harder about that, but don't have regrets as we were down to only 1-2 times per day. My second was weaned at 13 months as I just felt it to be the right time for both of us. My third is now 13 months and he still nurses about a few times a day and numerous times overnight. I don't see myself weaning for another few months with him at earliest.

I never really got any questions past a year, as mostly family knew about it, and it was less frequently with the first two. I wonder this time around, though, if that will change. Really, I don't care, though. We as mothers do what we think is the best thing for each baby. I hate those "magic" numbers. I think they influence way too many mothers to rethink their gut feeling and what's in their heart.

Congrats on nursing this long! :)

Pam, mom, honey, said...

i say the majic age is 10, no really who cares as long as you both are still happy. honestly nursing was my quiet time with my kids when i thought about this precious blessing for a few minutes. enjoy it they grow up fast and once you stop it is hard to start again

The Ashworth family said...

I nursed Trey til he was about 16 months, and I think that was the mutual time we were both ready to be done - I felt a lot of pressure to stop nursing him at a year - even from good meaning people that I respect - I don't know why that is. I have gotten wierded out by a couple moms that have breastfed for longer periods but it's more the way they have breastfed not the fact that they are breastfeeding - almost like they need to breastfeed even when their child seems to want to be done nursing. I won't give in to the pressure with this next baby - I will nurse him as long as I think he needs/wants to. I sometimes wonder if Trey was ready to be done because he will still try to nurse if he sees me come out of the shower. I don't want him to feel jealous of his new brother nursing. Not sure how to handle that.

Adventures In Babywearing said...

I don't believe there is a magic number. It is different for each child and mother. I nursed Gray as long as. We both enjoyed it and stopped when it was far too uncomfortable to continue in my pregnancy. He was 2.5. Ivy? Just turned 1 and we'll nurse however long seems right to us! I guess that will be at least until age 2-3.

Steph

Kimberly/Mom in the City said...

I nursed both of my sons until the were 2...my second son a bit longer. I think that as long as you, your kid (and your husband!) are alright with it, then it's all good.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Amy. I found you from the "Today Show" blog about the adoptive mom...saw you were from Knoxville, so curiousity led me to your blog!
When my son was born, my aunt said, "Don't nurse him til he's two years old!" Guess what, I did just that, although for the last few months it was just nap time and bed time. It was HARD, because he had acid reflux and the breast milk actually made it worse. I was a new mom and didn't really understand anything about all that until it was too late...anyway, I stuck with it and my son was the healthiest kid on the block. He would maybe get a cold once a year for a couple of days. The immunities lasted him until he was about 8 or 9 years old, maybe longer! The cuddling, bonding and easy bedtimes helped too. Don't quit until you and he are ready...even then, it's hard to give it up.