Monday, August 2, 2010

I Don't Want (Him) To Grow Up

Today's post has nothing to do with writing. Right now, I'm focused on Jack, who for the past week and a half has been on what they call a "nursing strike," meaning he doesn't want to breastfeed. I think it started with the rapid increase in solid food that occurred on our trip to CA - it decreased his demand for milk, which got my supply screwed up, which led to him getting impatient and biting me, which made me switch to bottles until he got over it. I'd been able to nurse in the mornings and at night, but last night he wouldn't nurse, and I lost it.
The weird thing is, I've always said I hated breastfeeding. Sure, I enjoyed the closeness of nursing Jack (pretty much the only time I can hold him without him squirming all over the place) and I felt like I was doing the best thing for my child, but it's been a pretty big inconvenience for the past 7.5 months. I thought I couldn't wait to get my body back, to be able to leave Jack for more than four hours, to be able to sleep in, etc.
What I didn't realize was how much I liked knowing that my little guy was dependent on ME. Nursing is the one and only thing I can do that no other person can do for Jack. He's not one of those clingy babies that hates to be away from his mommy - he's a pretty independent little guy and he likes everyone. But to have Jack all of a sudden stop nursing - even biting me whenever I tried to coax him back into it - felt like such a huge rejection. I know I always said that I'd be happy with 6 months, but I was not mentally prepared for this to happen yet.
Today Jack has nursed all three meals so far, even falling asleep on me before his nap (he's sleeping as I type). Holding him close to me, feeling his soft little hands, hearing his breathing - I am going to miss those things more than I could have imagined. He's 7 months old and I already feel like he's growing up too fast! Sheesh!
So, for now, I'm going to take things one day at a time (I still hold to my previous statement that once those top teeth come in, I'm done). Pumping has its advantages, and so does nursing, and I'm not ready to commit to anything at this point. I still want to finish breastfeeding before the marathon, but I have a few more months before then. In the meantime, there is work to be done...

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