Bittersweet Endings

 

Hey mama--I'm a big girl now.

Zoe and I stopped nursing a few weeks ago. I thought it was going to be a traumatic event for her and had put it off since we found out I was pregnant because I didn’t know how to do it without a lot of upset.

But then one day, we just did it. Didn’t give her a bottle, didn’t nurse her, nothing. She got a sippy cup with milk and that was it.

I was ready for tears. I was ready for naptime and bedtime to turn into a sobbing, messy disaster.

Instead, she didn’t care.

Apparently she was ready to stop nursing. I was the one who ended up taking it hard. It’s always been our thing — every nap and bedtime was always my job  – and she would nurse and get sleepy and play with her hair while I played Scrabble on my iPhone. For 15 months that was our routine. Giving it up was another sign — on a daily list of growing signs — that my little baby is growing up.

But now we have a new routine. We read a few books while she guzzles milk, then she turns around, throws her arms around my neck and cuddles in close while I sing her a song or two from her lullaby CD. Then in the crib she goes with no complaint, one arm wrapped around a stuffed animal. She tucks her feet under her and sticks her little butt straight up in the air. Love it. It’s so easy and sweet.

Mark has started taking charge at bedtime more often than I do because he loves cuddly Zoe. He said last night she even lifted up her head at one point and gave him a kiss on the lips before nuzzling in close again. Then she started waving bye-bye at him, clearly telling him he’d overstayed his welcome. She was ready for bed.

Our little baby is gone. We have a toddler now.

And now I have to find a new time to play Scrabble.

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2 Responses to Bittersweet Endings

  1. I remember that process with my kids!! Teagan was 25 months and I was pregnant with her brother and nursing was PAINFUL at that point. We were down to just bedtime and I hadn’t ever intended to lead her weaning at all. But the pain was unbearable so one night, I offered her a sippy of warm milk instead of the breast. She took a sip, wrinkled her nose and handed it back, and went to sleep without an issue and never asked for breastmilk again. Zach was 15 months and just stopped asking. And if I offered, he refused. He was just done.

    Good for you for nursing for 15 months!!

  2. Jenny Steadman says:

    Sadie and I made it to 12 months and 2 weeks of nursing. I was the one hanging on, even though it was just at bed time. She tried to give it up a few weeks prior but she had been sick and we were traveling and it didn’t seem like the right time to me. Then, I was SO glad we were still nursing as we sat in the ER in Florida. That helped both of us, for sure.

    But now we do the same thing you do. We sit in the chair, rock, we read a book… and sometimes she asks so go to bed even before the little book is done.

    Oh, how they grow so quickly.

    Congrats to you for making it 15 months. That is amazing!!!

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