12 months was my goal. Once I made it past the first 2 weeks, which I will openly admit were pretty traumatic, even for a seasoned professional like me, I set 12 months as my goal.
This was my last baby and so my last ever journey of providing on tap nutrition for my dependant little being. I did 12 months with Tween and although I thought he would be the last, I was ready, so by the rule of past experience, we’d get to that milestone and I’d slowly wean my boy onto a cup for his bedtime milk.
It would be sad but I would be ready, so I thought.
But 12 months came and went. 16, 17, 18 months and those milky moments were just as much a part of his life, as important and comforting as the day he was born. But as our breastfeeding journey had past, our breastfeeding moments evolved.
Gone were the guessing games or decifering if he needed food, nappy changes or cuddles, was he too hot Too cold or Too bored? For good reasons or bad, a toddler will tell you when he wants feeding!
Babies will root, turn their heads towards you, toddlers lunge! There’s top tugging, sign language and even head turning, I’m in position and you try and stop me moments which are very hard to ignore.
Babies snuggle, relax and sometimes doze. Toddlers play. They kick, they roll, they ticke and they clap. They fiddler, they tug and they twiddle ( yes I am talking about what you think I am!) Those once sleepy milk cuddles turn into boobie gymnastics!
Toddlers have teeth. Well most do. It’s a whole new sensation where the once toothless gums are now pearly whites. Couple that with boobie gymnastics and you’re living life on the wild side! And if you’ve got a fiddler. Wowzers!
And then there’s the opinions. “You’re still feeding!” “Is that natural?” “That’s just weird” “he doesn’t need that now” “you’re one of THOSE mums” Once you get past 12 months people’s opinions change, some more expressive, some less comfortable and most more OPIONATED!
But it’s not all bad, there are the days when the power of milk takes away pain, when he looks up, shoots me a smile as big as the Cheshire Cat and when a little hand reaches for mine, holds it in his and closes his eyes. That’s the moments I love, the simple side to breastfeeding a toddler.