Sunday, December 10, 2006

nuh-nuh's = love

"Why haven't you weaned that baby yet?" Would ya'll like to know? Somewhere around Jack's first birthday, I read an article on extended breastfeeding. The article stated that there was a window for natural weaning around the first birthday, and if you don't take it, you'd better be prepared to nurse for a good while longer. I didn't notice that with my first child, but I definitely saw that window in Jack. Around his first birthday, he was eating table foods very well and only nursed once or twice in a 24 hour period. I definitely had the feeling he could take it or leave it, and felt like if we wanted to wean it could be done pretty easily at that point. We didn't wean. My first child nursed until she was nearly 4 (Don't be too horrified. It was just at bedtime!). Weaning at 12 months definitely felt too soon. Eventually he started nursing with more interest again, although he still mostly nurses at bedtime and maybe once during the night. Since his 2nd birthday, however, nursing has become an emotionally-laden activity for Jack. He *loves* to nurse. Whereas before he could, and often would, go to sleep at night without nursing, now he will actually cry for his "nuh-nuh's". When I lay down on our bed to nurse, he will smile at me and sigh, "nuh-nuh's" while he pats me through my clothing. And then, before he latches on, he says, "hug", and turns his head into my arm, and then, "kiss", and pucker up at my face for a kiss before he starts nursing. Nuh-nuh's equal love to him. And that's why we haven't weaned. :)

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