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Random Advice Woman on Nursing a Toddler

on March 13 | in Extended Breastfeeding | by | with 5 Comments

Random Advice Woman was not actually expecting a question but received one anyway. Yipee!

How do you have the resolve to do it for so long? For some reason, I am not digging breastfeeding this time around and I have no idea why?! It’s only been 6 weeks, how am I going to last another minimum of 5 more months? I have made a pact to myself to keep going till at least 6 months and then after that see how much longer I can go. I know the benefits, but I miss the independence after awhile. – Destiny

Honestly, there are times when I wish I were invisible. Children have no sense of personal space. In the past I used to soak in the tub with a glass of wine. Now, I’m lucky to get a bath. When I do, it seems like the whole family ends up in there with me by the end (even the cat). But when it comes to nursing my toddler, it’s a totally different dynamic. There are so many reasons I enjoy nursing I don’t even know where to start. Actually, I think I do: Those feel-good bonding hormones that kick in during the early months. I don’t think those are really in-play at this point, but they were nice!!!

Nursing a toddler is definitely different than nursing a newborn. Katie sometimes crawls around like I am her personal jungle gym, but there are also times when she is so peaceful and cuddly. That alone is worth it for me. She is so active now that cuddling is pretty much out of the question unless she’s nursing. But for those few minutes she is my sweet baby again.

The health benefits are pretty awesome, too. I just survived a stomach flu that basically eviscerated my body. Because I was delivering antibodies via my breastmilk Katie didn’t even get sick. It is an amazing protective system that God has set in place. Which leads me to a lesser known benefit: the natural spacing of children. For a variety of reasons Daniel and I have chosen not to use chemical birth control. Before we had Katie we used Natural Family Planning with 100% success for over four years of marriage. Now, we are using ecological breastfeeding to space our children.

You might be surprised to learn that more and more moms are doing it. Not just granola-types, either. Regular women. Working women. Stay-at-home moms. Because I am outspoken about my position (that extended breastfeeding should be encouraged for moms and babies that want to), moms often confess to me what they won’t tell their church nursery workers, friends, and family.

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5 Responses to Random Advice Woman on Nursing a Toddler

  1. Des says:

    Thanks so much for giving me your take on it all. I so can relate on the whole doing nothing alone thing. I don’t even remember the last time I’ve pee’d without Lyric walking in saying “hi momma, you go potty? YAY!” which is kind of nice to get so much encouragement for pee’ing.
    But life passes too quickly and I know I’ll look back on these moments with a definite “awwww” factor.
    As for the nursing thing, I WILL push through! I need to get into a better mind set. I loved nursing Lyric and just stopped because of work. But with Shi it feels like a chore. I’m sure I’ll snap out of it as I refuse to stop right now. Plus formula poopy diapers STINK! :)

  2. I know this is an old post, and things I write now wont matter anymore, but I remember those early weeks and months. It was so extremely hard. It’s a huge life change, especially coming from a person who like to have my own space to lay on a bed and read the entire night if I wished too. I would not give it up for any good book that is for sure. All that justifies I made the right choice, he having my own eyes smiling back at me while she chants “I want a boob-e-ah, I want a boob-e-ah, I want a boob-e-ah”.

    • Heather says:

      They matter to me! Actually, I’d really like to thank you for commenting because it caused me to come back and read this post. My little girl is a lot older now (still nursing, though) and it brought back good memories.

  3. Momof2Groks says:

    Give up a good book for nursing? Sometimes that was the only way I got my reading in. My oldest was impossible to wind down unless swaddled tight and nursing for at least 30 minutes, sometimes an hour. In order to keep my sanity, I just brought along a book (or if it was dark in his room, listened to a book on my iPod). I loved nursing my older babies and toddlers. :-)

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