25 months, 2 weeks and 6 days.
That is how long I nursed my son. It’s funny because that was never the goal. The goal was 365 days. One year. I figured a year was plenty and I would just be done after that. Oh, how naive I was. There were so many things I didn’t know…so many things I have since learned.
I have learned that breastfeeding is more than just a means to feed your child. For me, it turned into a relationship rather quickly. There were times that I looked forward to it just as much as he did. It was our special time that no one else had and I loved that so much.
I learned that a quick nursing session is a cure all. Hungry? Nurse. Upset? Nurse. Hurt? Nurse. Need to calm down? Nurse.
I learned that breastfeeding doesn’t come easy. I struggled in the very beginning and the pain I felt was almost unbearable. I pushed through the pain, fixed the things we needed to fix and continued on. I am so glad I did.
I learned that you can’t “schedule” your nursing sessions. When baby is hungry, he wants to eat! I was so worried about keeping track and keeping him on a schedule in the beginning that it was driving me crazy. Once I started to feed on demand, it made my life so much easier. Grey was happier, too!
I learned that clogged ducts are absolutely miserable. They come out of nowhere and suddenly you feel like you have the flu. Chills, aches, fever, pain. It’s horrible. I’m so thankful my clogged ducts never turned into mastitis and I was able to get rid of them quickly. Nurse, pump, nurse, pump, nurse, pump until those things are gone!
I learned that breastfeeding meant very little freedom…especially in the beginning. I was on call 24/7 and never spent more than an hour or two away from him for a very long time.
I learned that nursing came in handy for surviving a plane ride with a baby. For the majority of our flights, I would just nurse him right to sleep and it was smooth sailing from there on out. This is the same for hotel stays. If he woke up crying in the middle of the night, I would just nurse him right back to sleep. I never had to worry about waking up the neighbors!
I learned that night weaning is not for the weak. I had to do it twice…and both times are experiences that I would like to forget.
I learned that it would be as hard, if not harder, for me to end our breastfeeding relationship. There were so many times I contemplated it…but decided it wasn’t time. Some days it felt never ending…but when I really thought about weaning him, I just couldn’t do it. Our journey lasted 781 days…and now that it’s over, it feels like it went by in the blink of an eye. I will forever treasure those times I had with my little boy and I feel so thankful that we were able to share that special bond for such a long time.
It wasn’t always easy…but it was always worth it.