Tuesday, March 23, 2010

a subtle mourning

There is a lot to be excited about here at my house. My husband and I are wrapping up the purchase of our new home, I'm taking on a lead volunteer role in the nursery at our church and Ben is going to be in the Easter drama, Malakai is learning so many new things including a hilariously adorable army crawl.

Yet, I'm grieving.

After trying over and over to continue breastfeeding, I finally had to stop. I've been exclusively pumping for 4 days now and my heart hurts.

Just a few days ago I was able to nurse Malakai if he was asleep {and sometimes if he was just groggy} without being bitten. Then he started to chomp every time, but I pushed through. I've read in books and on websites how babies will rarely self-wean before 10 months.

My baby is rare.

I tried everything. I don't feel defeated and I don't see this as giving up. I persevered through a lot of physical pain.

I'm hurting because I miss the bonding. Malakai latched perfectly from the moment he was born and I experienced very little soreness when we were getting used to nursing, so I thought that we'd made it through the hardest part and it would be the same for the following 10-12 months. I'm here to tell you that it doesn't always work out the way you think it will...and while I'm grieving, it's okay.

Today I held him close while giving him his bottle and cuddled up, stroking the soft skin of his round legs. I can still bond with my son, I just have to get used to how different it is.

I'm doing my best to get excited about the stage he's entering and all the things I get to teach him. He's been  doing this funny "call & response" thing when he calls out and if you copy him he'll keep going and just giggle with delight. I'm also teaching him to use a cup. I do plan on giving him breastmilk until about 12 months if my body lets me.

I just felt like I had to share about this for anyone out there in a similar dilemma, whether it be nursing or something else. Parenting can be difficult, and that's okay. The joys far outweigh the trials.


  1. Even though my kids are 18 and 11, I do remember the special bonding moments we had when breastfeeding. I am sorry this has happened, maybe it's just a phase, but every baby is different. You will find other ways to bond with him. Don't let it worry you too much. :o) Take care.

  2. Congrats on making it for the many months that you did! I tried & tried with Brayden & he would never latch so I just had to be alright with pumping full time but after only 1 month my milk disappeared completely......I am jealous that I did not have the closness you describe with Kai with my own little man!!

  3. oh, sweet girl.

    I did the same thing to my mother - her last baby, she dreamed of nursing me a year.

    At four months, I weaned. Who knows?

    But he'll be okay :)

  4. Shandell,

    Grieve away my friend, grieve away!!! To some it may seem silly, but as a breastfeeding mom, I can understand! I dread the day when Abby's time comes to stop breastfeeding...I always new I wanted to BF but I NEVER imagined I would become so attached to that time together...it is the best (while it lasts!).

    So now it is time to enjoy cuddling and bottle feeding your little man...I'm sure that will end some day too as it would be weird to cuddle and bottle feed a teenager ;)

    Best of luck on pumping!!!


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