Friday, November 20, 2009

Mourning

I am typing this standing up. I cannot sit down. It's not because of a bad back or other physical complaint, no, it's because I am weaning my baby. If I sit, she comes crying with a panicked, "I'm STARVING here, mother!!" cry. I watched the entire season finale of Project Runway standing up. I leaned against the door to write my grocery list.

This is my fifth time through the weaning process. You'd think I knew what I was doing. Turns out, each one of these creatures comes with a complimentary Confusion Packet downloaded in the factory. It is meant to knock us more experienced parents to our knees--just when we think we've got it all figured out.

(Incidentally, the longer I parent, the more I see of the evidence of this Confusion Packet. The designer of the software made sure to have irregular incidents of confusing occurrences spring up over a matter of years. They sometime come in bursts and other times lull you into thinking that you've beat the program. Do Not Be Deceived. There is more trickery to come.)

This beautiful child is not taking to any pattern that any other of my previously weaned children took. She seems to be an all or nothing kind of gal. I don't want to cause myself pain, though, so I am taking four days to reduce my milk supply slowly before cutting her off completely. We are down to two, maybe three more feedings. She's kinda mad.

At least I didn't use pepper or Tabasco sauce. I could have been much meaner!

I love nursing. I love holding my soft baby close to me, skin to skin, heart to heart. As I nourish her, I am also nourishing us. The warm milk combined with the gentle hold of her nursing mother soothes away any sadness or hurt. It is something only I can do, and despite my desire to be humble and selfless, I have a hard time chiding myself for this act of selfishness.

So even though I am ready to stop constantly whipping off my shirt (I know--thought I'd never get sick of that!), I am grieving the end of this phase. It's the beginning of not being able to solve every problem that creeps into her life. It is giving up some of my Motherly Powers. It is the first step in a long line that takes a person from complete dependence to complete independence. Monday morning, she will no longer need me for sustenance. I'm GLAD, but I am still so very sad.

Here's to sleeping full nights, wearing clothes that don't require access to my breasts and

sitting.

1 comment:

  1. I love nursing too...

    My girls have been pretty good...they never came up to me and lifted my shirt up in public or never said, "Drink!" while grabbing my boops- so I nursed them a LONG time...long enough to where we were both ready to stop...no tears- just a few pangs in the heart and on we went...

    good luck Emily.

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