Motherhood is a rollercoaster of emotions and like so many aspects of parenting, breastfeeding had its own ups and downs. There were many times that I felt like quitting.
I felt like quitting before I’d even begun! I felt like quitting when reflux made all my efforts seem pointless. I felt like quitting during cluster feeds. I felt like quitting when he got fidgety and curious. I felt like quitting after a year of night feeds. I felt like quitting when people told me he was too old. I felt like quitting when I wanted just 5 minutes peace. I felt like quitting when I was suffering with morning sickness during my second pregnancy.
“Don’t quit on a bad day”.
That's what a friend told me and I am glad I listened to them.
We got through our early issues. Breastmilk made the reflux easier for him. The growth spurts, the fidgeting, the night feeds – they would have still happened even if I was formula feeding. People would have just found something else to pass judgement on. I wouldn’t have had any extra peace with bottle feeding. Breastfeeding was a good distraction from the morning sickness.
Eventually though, my sweet boy decided it was time to stop. He asked for milk less often. He dropped his feeds until he was only having milk in the morning, at naptime and at bedtime. Then he dropped his bedtime feed and instead he fell asleep with cuddles. Soon he dropped his morning feed, and instead he demanded breakfast upon waking. All that was left was his naptime feed. Our special milky cuddles were reduced to once a day.
Any day now could be the last feed.
He was 19 months old and I was 5 months pregnant. He started falling asleep at naptime without any milk. He’d lay down and hold me while he drifted off. He’d feed one day but not the next. I cherished each feed because I knew that I was on borrowed time.
When the day came I just knew. I stroked his soft hair as he nursed and drifted off to sleep. I knew it was our last feed and I felt so sad. I don’t know how I knew; just call it mother’s instinct. As he lay asleep next to me, holding on to my dress, I took a photo of us. It’s the picture above. I knew he wasn’t going to ask for milk ever again and I wanted to hold on to that moment. A bittersweet moment. It was the last time.
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Thanks for hopping over from Princess Poet and welcome to my post for the Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt Day 7 The End of My Breastfeeding Journey. Our sponsors today include Close Parent who are providing an organic Close Caboo Organic Carrier, a £20 voucher from Burble Baby and a breastfeeding necklace of your choice from Baby Beads for our Grand Prize winner. Over £700 worth of goodies are up for grabs - get your entries via the Rafflecopter widget at the bottom of this post.
Following on from my journey, please do hop over to Run Jump Scrap to see how her journey ended and be in with more chances to enter the grand prize draw. Full terms and conditions can be found on the Keeping Britain Breastfeeding website. UK residents only.