Let’s talk about WEANING!!
The weaning process can be an easy transition for some and dreadful for others. For me, it was rough. I wasn’t excited about the thought of weaning at all. We had been breastfeeding for over 2 years, and it was our norm. We had fully adjusted to the lifestyle, and now I was supposed to just stop, and wean her?! I wasn’t happy about this new step in our journey, but I knew it needed to happen… and for both of us.
When I decided to introduce the weaning process, my daughter had just turned 26 months old, had a mouth full of teeth, and was eating just about everything. My supply had started to decrease because I could no longer pump my milk at work and because baby girl wasn’t nursing as often. Not to mention our horrible sleeping pattern that needed some TLC. Because we co-sleep, I believe that made it even harder to actually wean, especially when it came to those nighttime feedings. When she was with me, she wouldn’t sleep unless she was breastfed. During the week while I was at work, she would sleep “like a baby”. My mom often raved about how great she slept. Yes, can you believe that?! Oh, but when I was around baby girl refused to sleep without the breast. It was so bad that at 2 years old she would still scream in the car until I pulled over to nurse her, yes at 2 years old. It got to the point where she just wanted to sleep with my nipple in her mouth. So much that my nipples had become raw from all the sucking.
Nights were a nightmare too. She would wake up every 2 hrs on the dot, screaming, and pulling at my clothes until I whipped out my breast. On a daily, she and I would wake up with dark circles under our eyes that I started to think were permanent. Yup, it was that bad. But hey, it all makes sense, right?! For over 2 years I responded quickly to her every cry, coo, and wail primarily by breastfeeding her. Let’s be honest, the breast was the cure-all it felt like. Breastfeeding seems to make everything better. However, because of this, I created a dependency on the breast that had nothing to do with nursing. Many nights she would nurse for no more than a second and back to sleep she went. This was another reason I knew she was ready to start the weaning process.
It took some time, but we were able to finally wean. It took about 2 1/2 weeks of tears, punches, and kicks, but we did it. Don’t get me wrong, we still have a few nights during the week when she may wake up and request the breast, however, I just kiss her and back to sleep she goes.
This is what worked for us. I made sure to take the right steps for us. I didn’t rush the process. It took us time to learn how to breastfeed, and it was going to take time to wean. What people don’t talk about is that mamas need time to wean herself too. It was a very emotional time for me. There were a few nights I gave in, crying at the same time and that is OK! No one told me that I would have to look my crying baby in the face while she begs and begs for the breast. Nope sure didn’t!! I had to figure out how to get through this part of our journey in a way that worked for us both. It definitely wasn’t easy, but I did it, we did it. At days shy of 27 months old, baby girl had officially weaned and mommy too.