A late post- Late because for many days I wasn’t sure if it was over.
I thought I would give in and like always we’d start all over again; but it didn’t happen. He kept coming back to me, pleading, asking if I was okay and if I could offer him his favourite aadudu( his word for breast/breastmilk)
It broke my heart each time, but I denied because it was getting tough for me to continue our breastfeeding journey, tougher than it was to control myself from starting again, giving in to those yearning eyes.
29th January 2019 was the last day he nursed, Just when he completed 34 months of breastfeeding.
I started conditioning him long back (can’t recall) but it’s been many months. He would talk to aadudu, sing songs and say things like “I’m so happy to see aadudu”, “ye mera aadudu hai”, “I love you aadudu”.
I asked him that soon aadudu will stop as he was growing up and that he must thank aadudu for nurturing him, for making him a strong and big boy from a tiny, feeble baby that he was. He would say “aadudu thank You, aapne mujhe chhotu baby se big boy banaya”. On asking “baby when will you stop having aadudu”? He would promptly reply- “Tomorrow”, a tomorrow that never came! A tomorrow that came months later!
I have a heavy heart as I write this, but I know I did my best.
We ‘ve come a long way and we loved our nursing sessions, despite the occasional bouts of frustrations because sometimes you feel that that’s the only thing you do through the day, sometimes the back does ache from being in a certain position for long.
Weaning needs a lot of strength and determination and that is why it took me so long. I just did not have the heart to do it. With cracked nipples and toddler reaching 3, I realised that it was the best time to do it.
Sharing my weaning journey and few tips for moms who are nursing older toddlers or older kids.
How I weaned my 34 months old child from breastmilk?
There is nothing that will help as much as talking to your child will. At almost 3 yrs I could easily to talk things out to him, he however had difficulty falling asleep without nursing.
He knew he was a big boy with teeth, a big boy who could chew on to yummy food and didn’t need breastmilk, but somehow wasn’t ready. Finally I resorted to putting band-aid on my sore nipples and told him I was hurt.
This continued for weeks and he stopped asking for it. Some stories, lots of cuddles helped us get through this phase.
Weaning is easier with spouse and family support.
Here are a few things you can do to make it easy for you and your child.
Distract- When you know your child is going to ask for it, just distract. For example, it is her naptime and you know she needs it for her naps; distract by reading a story/ singing to her and rock her to sleep. I know of some parents, who would take their child on drives and make him fall asleep in the car. some took for stroller rides, some carried their kids in the Carrier and made them sleep.
Once the day feeds have reduced, it is not so difficult to distract them.
Take a break -I know of someone who took a 4 days break and traveled with friends only so that her son could get off the breasts.
Ask your husband or other family member to help-
Spouse can be the best support. Let him take over the bed time duties till the child has weaned.
You can start some new bedtime rituals while you are still nursing so that your bub feels normal and the transition is smooth.
few things to ensure-
See that the change is gradual, to help both -You and the baby. Your breasts should have reduced the supply when you plan to completely stop nursing. You don’t want to end up with plugged painful ducts. If you face engorgement use heating pads to comfort yourself.
Take it slow and easy.