Children: the best excuse for a vehicle upgrade. Happy with our purchase today!
Wow! I can’t believe that my little Bambino is a year old already and I’m happy to say that the breastfeeding continues on. I breast fed Little Man until he self-weaned at about 15 months (I was an unprepared emotional wreck) and for this little one I planned on doing the same. But I’m going to be honest and say that I’ve been less keen on prolonging breastfeeding this time. I know, I shocked myself with these words as well, but let me paint a picture for you. I have 2 children under 4 and since they are close in age I also have to divide my time accordingly. They both need their momma for practically everything; from cleaning bums to kissing boo boos. And if any of you read my post “Reclaiming the Queen” you’ll understand that being a momma is truly 24/7 and results in little or broken sleep. Breastfeeding can be draining (literally and figuratively if you pardon the pun) and when so much of you is demanded all the time, it’s sometimes simpler just to stop. But, for those like myself who want to keep on going because they know of the benefits of extended breastfeeding, here are a few things that you need:
1. Support: Even the most seasoned breast feeder needs continued support. If returning to work, she needs a safe and comfortable environment to either pump during the day or have the child come to the workplace for feedings. Employers, caregivers, husbands, daddies need to respect this decision and do what they can to make it possible and to make sure its encouraged.
A mother also has no need for negative feedback or opinions from outsiders. How discouraging (and tactless) is it if someone suggests “You should really give that up now, your baby is too old to still be breastfeeding” or “Don’t you find it gross that they can ask for the ‘boobie?'” Well, did you know that the World Health Organization suggests breastfeeding to the age of two or longer? It is completely natural and accepting of anyone wanting to continue breastfeeding for as long as they feel is beneficial. So tell to the next person with a not so nice comment about you and your baby!
2. Momma Time: Breastfeeding can consume a lot of time and energy (and calories!). It affects you physically, emotionally and even socially. It is important that breastfeeding mommas take time for themselves to relax and to take care of themselves; time for peace and quiet or even a “Mommy Time-Out.” This also ties in with having a good support system. It is awesome knowing that my husband is totally ok with me taking a bath or reading in the other room while he handles the kiddos for a while. My favourite thing is when he takes the kids and gets them breakfast and plays with them in the morning and lets me sleep a little longer in my cozy bed. Sigh! That’s what love is!
It is also important for mommas to have socialization with friends or their partner without kids. After breastfeeding for so long it can be easy to place the focus on schedules and feedings. You may feel like an object merely created to produce milk and feed babies. My husband and I joke and say that “mom” is only a anagram for “Made Of Milk” or “Milk Only Machine.” Some of you won’t disagree. Right now your role may be first and foremost a mom but you are more than just that! Some of you have careers, aspirations, and hobbies or activities you enjoy. We need to have some time to focus on those other areas of our lives as well as building relationships outside of being ‘mom.’ Think of it, when our children are grown and we don’t have to tend to them any longer, what relationships will we hold close?
3. Ask for Help: It is totally normal to feel a little frazzled when so much is demanded of your time and energy. And it’s completely normal to feel emotional over the stress. For a while, I thought I was going through post postpartum depression, but what it really was, was the excessive stress and strain I was feeling trying to balance breastfeeding day and night with housework, another child and being the wife and mother that I wanted to be. Ok, so you’re not Supermom! But who cares? You shouldn’t expect it of yourself nor anyone else for that matter. It’s ok to ask for help whether it’s asking someone to watch your child(ren) for a few hours to catch up on housework or asking your partner to share the load or employing someone else.
If you are a breastfeeding momma – Awesome!
If you are a breastfeeding momma who has been breastfeeding for over a year now – Fantastic!
Whatever your breastfeeding status – Great job! Keep going! You can do it! Push on! I’m proud of you!
And your little one thinks so too.
I really love hearing my child’s interpretation (or misinterpretation) of things. It really makes for a funny moment.
After taking Little Man out of the bath, he was shivering cold and needed warming up.
Me: Goodness! You’re shivering and your legs are white!
LM: They’re supposed to be white.
Me: Why is that?
LM: Because God made me white!
And when recently, while arranging child care, I was talking to my husband about dropping the boys off at Nanny’s. Little Man became very upset which we found very strange since he loves going to Nanny and Poppy’s. When we asked what was wrong he said, “I don’t want to be dropped off!” Poor thing must have thought we were cruel “dropping” him! Thankfully, after a little explanation he was ok.
Have a great day! Remember to focus on the positive and remember even the littlest things that make you love parenting.