In a few days, it will be 24 months since I started breastfeeding my son. I’m proud of this feat and I’m happy to provide my child with brain-building, immune and nervous system-boosting, dental-health guarding breastmilk.
But you see, 24 months is already a long time and surely a night of uninterrupted sleep is not too much to ask at this point, no? We co-sleep with a toddler bed attached to ours and he crawls in to feed, usually 2-3 times at night when he’s rustled by either thirst, nightmares or just for comfort. He can’t sleep without nursing too, if that’s worth a mention.
When he lifts my shirt at night, I am just too tired to stop him and just give up, like saying, “Ok, go on, help yourself!”
Mind you, during day time, I can distract him from constantly climbing up to me to feed. He eats well and is thriving ok without breastmilk, especially when I am at work. But it’s at night when he becomes unstoppable.
During my 4 days of off for the Islamic holiday we had here, I prepared for Operation: Weaning. Me against the toddler! I thought I am prepared for the battle but it involved a lot of crying and tantrums and I went soft. This breastmilk addict child of mine is no way giving up his stash. But what is most difficult is that he kind of developed a trauma – the idea of saying goodbye to the boobies resonated to him like he was saying goodbye to mom. Like it’s not only the boobs that will be gone but the whole mom thing.
And of course he didn’t like it.
He became very clingy, wouldn’t go to his nanny when I am around. It became difficult for me to go to work because he would chase me to the door and let out a cry that will break your heart. And yes, I now take a bath at home with him sitting at the corner of the bathroom, playing with his toy car and constantly peeking if I am still in the shower or if I disappeared into thin air. These past few days, I cannot even sit down to eat properly without Benjamin clinging to me like a baby chimpanzee.
I say, enough.
So for now, I give up on weaning my child off the boob business. And it’s ok. I’d give him a little more time. We will go slow (but hopefully not until he’s going to kindergarten!). Cue that Time magazine controversial cover on extended breastfeeding.