Can I Turn Back Time?

I am starting to panic a little. I have 2 more months until my nursing goal of one year is complete. I thought by now I would have given up or at the most be totally ready to wean her. I figured I would be dying to have my body back to myself. Oddly enough for me,  nursing has brought upon quite the opposite of feelings. Every night that my sleepy eyed baby throws herself lovingly at me and gropes around for my shirt, I smile. She loves her mama and she wants to be close. Every time she nurses I look down at her sweet head and admire her eyes, her cheeks, her hair. I laugh as she happily smacks my chest while she sucks away. Everything about the way she nurses is absolutely adorable. I get a tinge of saddness thinking about when this special bond between us will end. I mean, what better excuse to leave awkward situations is there besides, "I have to go nurse my baby"? This one has worked like a charm for me for 10 months... :D

I will admit I feel a little anxious about nursing past one for the main reason I know people are going to speak their minds left and right. People are already constantly asking me when I plan on weaning her. And I always recite the same answer, "I will wean when she turns one." And It hurts me to even say it, I don't think we are ready at all. Oh gosh, I used to always roll my eyes at those moms who referred to weaning as a "we aren't ready" thing. I never fully got it. I truly understand now. Nursing a child is such a mutual act of love. 

I have a feeling the two of us will have to eventually go into hiding to avoid the breastfeeding remarks once she hits 12 months. I don't know, who am I to decide how long she will nurse for? For all I know she could wean herself tomorrow. Oh Dear baby please don't do that! Now, now... I don't plan on nursing her until grade school or anything but I really don't see anything wrong with a once a day nightly nursing session until the age of 2. As it stand s now she only wants to breastfeed twice during the day. The rest is at night. Seems reasonable enough to me, right?
Besides just look at the benefits!

"Human milk expressed by mothers who have been lactating for >1 year has significantly increased fat and energy contents, compared with milk expressed by women who have been lactating for shorter periods. During prolonged lactation, the fat energy contribution of breast milk to the infant diet might be significant."
-- Mandel 2005 
Research reports on the psychological aspects of nursing are scarce. One study that dealt specifically with babies nursed longer than a year showed a significant link between the duration of nursing and mothers' and teachers' ratings of social adjustment in six- to eight-year-old children (Ferguson et al, 1987). In the words of the researchers, 'There are statistically significant tendencies for conduct disorder scores to decline with increasing duration of breastfeeding.'"
According to Elizabeth N. Baldwin, Esq. in "Extended Breastfeeding and the Law":
"Breastfeeding is a warm and loving way to meet the needs of toddlers and young children. It not only perks them up and energizes them; it also soothes the frustrations, bumps and bruises, and daily stresses of early childhood. In addition, nursing past infancy helps little ones make a gradual transition to childhood.
 Whatever- if people want to whisper about how obnoxious I am for continuing then so be it. But Phoenix will be a happy pumpkin and that is all that matters to me. 
And this coming from the girl who never thought she would breastfeed a day in her life and was completely grossed out by the mere mention of the word.
How far I have come.... 


Mommyof3 said...

I have plenty of friends I met through babycenter who are still nursing their 15 month old babies at least at night. I don't understand why people care why you breastfeed or not, like it personally affects them?

HelloKelly said...

I don't see why they care- to each their own is what I always say.

Adria said...

It's no one's business but your own! As long as you and your baby are both happy, don't worry about what anyone else says. :)

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