I have always known this time would come. I just didn’t know that when I nursed my 21 month old on that Saturday morning, it would be the last time.
I have been struggling with the choice to wean lately. G tends to nurse ALL. NIGHT. LONG. Our usual routine would be: Get ready for bed, get in her bed with mama (8 pm), mama nurses her to sleep (the uses the “Pantley-Pull-Off“), mama quietly exits room, mama does ___ for the next 2 hours, then G wakes (crying) and comes into mama’s bed and nurses again, falls asleep with mama, and then does the wake, nurse, sleep routine every 2 hours until she wakes at 7 am. This left a very very tired mama who desperately needed alone sleep time. It has been like this since about January. Before, she just co-slept with us.
So, when I began the process of night weaning, it was a step in the right direction for me to get sleep again. However, night # 2, when the assistance of Dada was needed to go to her room and soothe her, dada gave up. He was tired, and wasn’t feeling it. So, we stopped. Mama can’t night wean without Dada.
Saturday morning (May 30th, 2009, 9 am) arrives, and I nurse my sweet milk-loving 21 month old in bed, brushing her hair with my fingers, smiling down at my happy not-so-little nursling. Had I known this would be the last time ever that she would nurse, perhaps it would have been different. I’ll never know.
I was on my way to Seattle for the weekend, alone. This would be only the second time ever that G and I were separated at night. I had a full weekend ahead, and was VERY much looking forward to sleeping in the giant king-size bed alone. Uninterrupted. I told Dada this had to be done. He would have to soothe and calm her, remind her she’s a big girl and could do this. Love her. Cuddle her.
I return on Sunday night to find G sleeping in her bed, alone. I thought, okay… here is the test. She woke many times that night, but Dada went in to soothe her. He slept in there with her most of the night.
Morning arrives, and we made it. She came into our room at 9 am with lots of hugs and love. She started to pull at my shirt, asking to nurse. I said “No more nursies, you’re a big girl now… All done”. I expected tears and a meltdown like previous times I tried to deny nursies. Not this time. She said “No more nursies”, and hugged me again.
That’s it? Really? Just like that? I didn’t expect it to last.
She asked to nurse again 2 more times that day and I said the same thing each time, and she said the same thing each time too.
Here we are, almost one week later. She has not nursed. Not even once.
To be continued.