Family Magazine

Is Breastfeeding Coming to an End?

By Monicasmommusings @mom2natkatcj
Is Breastfeeding Coming to an End?You might recall that I was worried about leaving my husband to cloth diaper this weekend for the first time.  Little did I know that I might have a bigger worry on my hands.  My breastfeeding relationship with my 13 1/2 month old daughter was also being affected by this sleepover with my middle daughter.  Oh how difficult it is being the parent to more than one child.  Always pulled in four different directions.  I know I desperately needed to do this with my middle daughter and I have no regrets about the time we spent together, but at the same time did I leave my baby too soon?
It started with a refusal to breastfeed!
Now I will admit there has been less and less interest in breastfeeding of late.  Most nights she does still get up to breastfeed and then I usually breastfeed her in the morning.  Generally speaking we are only down to twice a day.  Sometimes she'll want it more often, but for the most part it's twice a day.  So before leaving with my daughter Friday night I figured to keep up my supply I would breastfeed her, since I wouldn't be home to breastfeed her and even if I did pump I didn't really want to do it in the bathroom of my daughter's elementary school.  She refused!  I didn't think too much of it.  We had just eaten dinner.  She had a cup of milk.  She probably wasn't really interested because she was full and refreshed.  So I left with the hopes that missing our evening feed was not going to mess with my supply at all.
Still no interest the next morning! 
When I came home early Saturday morning I had hoped that she would want to breastfeed.  She was already awake and my husband had given her a cup of milk.  Not only that, but she did fine the night before without me.  I mean I knew she would do fine because it's kind of out of sight out of mind, but I guess I was envisioning her attacking me as soon as she saw me after going 24 hours without breastfeeding.  She was quite content with her milk though.
So I wonder... Is this the end of a good long run of breastfeeding?
I am proud that we went over a year.  I never did see myself going much past say the 18 month mark with breastfeeding.  And given the fact that she has been breastfeeding less I didn't think things would go on too much longer.  In all honesty sometimes I seriously wonder how much if any she is getting when she does breastfeed.  Maybe I'm a human pacifier.  Because even after going 24 hours I was not leaking or engorged.  I did feel slightly full, but maybe that was my mind playing tricks on me.  I know 13 1/2 months of breastfeeding with over 6 months being done exclusively is nothing to sneeze at.
But maybe there is still interest!
I was really beginning to think that either she was done or she was mad at me for leaving.  And after her waking up twice last night specifically to breastfeed I would say she was mad at me.  Okay, well not really mad at me.  I don't know that she has the capability to do that sort of reasoning.  She doesn't seem quite ready to stop though.  So that's a huge relief to me.  Because had that actually been the end I probably would have always wondered if it was because I almost forced it to be the end by not being there.
And again the time I spent with my middle daughter was just as important as all of these things are such fleeting moments in our children's lives.  Some day we will be empty nesters and I'll be wondering where did the time go?  Did I do enough for each of my children?  Was I there enough?  Did I give them the guidance and love that they need?  Did I give them the nurturing that they need?  What it all enough?
But for now all looks to be right with the world again.  My baby girl does still want to breastfeed.  I still want to breastfeed her.  So the relationship continues...
When did you know your little one was ready to wean?  Did you do self weaning?
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