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still nursing my sweet girl

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DSC07950 Nothing is better than snuggling my girl against my breast.  Her sweet skin next to mine.  Her tangled curls and sweet, soft cheeks.  And now (ah) her kicking feet and wandering hands.  She is my delight.

I had to stop nursing my John when I was about 3 months pregnant with May {weaning my first born}, so it is wonderful to be able to nurse for that much longer.  Nothing to come between my girl and me.

With both of my nursing relationships, I have intended to gently wean by the age of two.  I know some children want to wean much sooner, and some still, probably my girl, who want to keep nursing until they are three or four.  I think two is a good age for us.  We have a few more months to relish in our nursing bond.

We nurse in the mornings on the couch, with her nestled close.  I will read to my son, if he’s awake, or usually have my laptop open, to take care of emails and blogging.  But I also remember to kiss her face and just listen to her breathe.  When I look down at her, she smiles and giggles ever so slightly, and then gets back to nursing.  That is what I want to remember.  These moments are fleeting.

For May’s nap, we snuggle in her bed and nurse to sleep {her montessori baby room}.  She falls right to sleep at the breast, usually after about 20 minutes.  I normally fall asleep too!  This is the time that I let John watch a 30 minute Bible or Letter Factory video.

May is still a great napper at 21 months.  She sleeps from about 1 to 3:30pm on days we are home.  We cut out her “after nap nurse” just due to the nice weather and sometimes being out and about.  This hasn’t seemed to bother her.  It bothers me a bit, because I can only nurse her on my left side on the couch.  I can’t lay on my {broken, yes, to me it will always be broken} arm, so when I nurse her to sleep, I am always on my right side, and right breast.  So I am nursing twice a day on the right and only once on my left.  I know I’m not producing all that much, so there is no soreness or size difference, however.

At night, we lay down together.  She usually begins wailing {very dramatic-like} until I ask, “Do you want to nurse?”  And she says, “Na, na!” {Which was one of her first words, a wonderful breakthrough because she isn’t quite the talker that my son was.} And then we nurse.  I usually will nurse with her for about 15-20 minutes, and then for night time, the norm lately has been that she won’t fall asleep while nursing.  I’ll gently take her off the breast, and 9 times out of 10, she is fine with it, puts her little arms over her head and lets me rub her chest for a minute.  I give her at least five or ten kisses during this time too — on her forehead and cheeks and lips.  Even in her first days and months, this girl adores to be kissed.  Then I sneak off, and she is fine.

I have had to be gone a couple times this year, due to my Army Reserve commitments.  The first time was in March and I was nervous that she would “forget” to nurse after three days.  I pumped three times {morning, 5pm-ish, and night}, and only got about 1-2 oz.  She has never taken a bottle, so pumping isn’t the norm for me.  I really, really dislike it.  But I’m glad that I kept my milk going {somewhat} during those days.  When I came home, she got right back to nursing, and the pit in my stomach went away.  I was so, so terrified, because we both were not ready.

{When I was packing for my trip, John saw me get out the breast pump, which he hadn’t seen in a long while, so we talked about it. And he made a breast pump out of his Saxoflute and was pumping all afternoon for “Hippo and Cow when I’m away from them.”  He “nursed” them and “pumped” before, but this just tugs my heart.  Have you heard of anything more tender?!  “You’re such a good daddy,” we told him.  And he was so proud of himself.  His breast pump has been out ever since, and he occasionally pumps “bottles of milk” for his Hip and Cow.}

And again this June, I had to be away for three days until I could see her again, and this time I got less than 1 oz per side.  I was disappointed because I know that she would have gotten more out, had she been with me, and I wondered if that time away would really “dry me up.”  But as soon as I saw her, we nursed and she seemed happy.  I have let her nurse a couple more times a day to try to make sure that I at least have a little milk for her.  I think this time did stop a bit of my flow, but I think {and hope} that she brought it back.

I have decided to nurse until this year ends.  My husband and I want to go on a get-away vacation, and it would be great to stop nursing, and soon get pregnant again after that {yes, we do want another baby.}  For me, two years old seems like a good stopping point.  I know I can’t be pregnant and nurse at the same time from my experiences with John.  A lot can change in the next few months; I see signs of her slowing down.

But still, my little nursling may not be happy.  She loves these snuggles so much.  She still could nurse for two hours {like she did last week when she woke up at 5am and I let her nurse and doze.}

She is my sweet angel.  She is so silly and playful.  She rubs my chest, and lately, likes to have her “baby!” with her, too.  Oh I love nursing my sweet baby girl.

Oh my precious babes, I am honored to be their mother.  I pray, every day, that I raise them up with love.


I feel that I should write, as an endnote, that I believe in all ways to care for and feed babies and toddlers.  I have friends who nurse. Friends who chose not to nurse.  Friends who didn’t produce milk.  Friends who adopted and couldn’t nurse.  Friends who use formula.  Friends who make homemade formula.  Friends who nursed three months.  Friends who nurse five year olds.  Every family and child has different needs.  I believe that what is best for mom and baby is best.


more breastfeeding posts:

breastfeeding through pumping for 6 weeks and a tongue tie

generations of breastfeeding joy

breastfeeding through thrush and teeth

weaning my first born 

my second nursling: nursing through bleeding and a tongue tie

and :  can I love my second child?


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  1. The countdown to stopping nursing is always bittersweet… sad but exciting — because you know you’ll get to bond in new ways after. We stopped around two as well, and while I thought it’d be harder to replace that part of our relationship, it really hasn’t been. Kids are so adaptable and resilient.

  2. My 7 bio kids, I gradually nursed longer and longer, even nursing through my last pregnancy and tandem nursing for a year. My last bio baby nursed 4 years, and is still a huge snuggle bug at 10.

    With our 3 adopted kids, there have been so many times when I wished that I had them from the beginning and could have nursed them. Sometimes a boobie can make everything all better when nothing else can, you know? It’s very different parenting a non nursing toddler.

    Enjoy those moments! I used to love when my Bubba would stagger into my room in the mornings and crawl into bed with me for his “toddler coffee.” After a while, he’d pop off and start chattering, ready to face the new day. :)

  3. Such a sweet post. I nursed Elli and Bo both until 2 1/2 and then I was ready. I actually weaned Bo for a month (to do a detox) and he started nursing again and nursed for another 9 months before I weaned him. I’m still so thankful that he loves to snuggle still. I would miss that terribly.

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