I didn't want to lump this in with my recent "another milestone every day" post, because I felt it deserved a post all its own. I'm finally ready to say it: Reid is done nursing.
I don't know why this makes me a little bit sad, but it does. In the moment, parenting a little one can feel like it's taking forever, but somehow that first year always manages to slip by. And then suddenly one day you realize you can't remember how your newborn smelled, or what it felt like to nurse him when he weighed just seven pounds. Suddenly you have a toddler. An independent, silly, clumsy, I-can-do-it-myself toddler. I'm not sure I'm ready for this!
|Big brother busting in on a nursing sesh|
Despite having to fight feelings of sadness, I am so proud of myself for making it almost fourteen months. Believe me when I say that breastfeeding for that long is not easy, especially when you're working full time outside the home.
There were so many days that I had to drag myself to the little conference room that HR let me use to pump. I felt a bit like a dairy cow. There were many times that I squeezed in an extra pumping session before bed, just to be sure my baby would have enough for the next day at daycare.
There was a NICU stay in the very beginning where I couldn't nurse my baby.
A lactation consultant who said within earshot that I may not be able to do this.
A hospitalization at 5 weeks for RSV, when I stayed by my baby's side day and night so that he could nurse on demand.
I had so many opportunities to throw in the towel and quit. And it would have been fine if I had just given in.
But I didn't.
I pressed on, wanting so badly to be able to provide my baby with breastmilk, wanting to prove to myself I really could do it.
And we did it.
At the end, I thought every time might be the last time. Reid was clearly not getting much milk anymore, and he wouldn't nurse for long. Still, knowing that our breastfeeding journey was nearing its end, I savored those moments with my baby. I snuggled him close and rocked him. At one point, I looked down at him when he unlatched himself and asked "are we done?" he smiled and said "all done." Oh, sweet baby. Please don't grow up too fast.