Friday, February 28, 2014

Celebrating a Milestone - Remembering a Year of Breastfeeding

On Monday, I reached one of my goals - I have been exclusively breastfeeding (with added solids) for one whole year!! I'm so proud of our journey and feel extremely blessed that I was able to give Nora the best start in life. What could be a better birthday gift than the bonding between mother and child; lowered risk of cancer for both; and immunities to protect your little one?

Birthday girl

As I think back on my first year of motherhood, some of my fondest memories include the special moments of love and relaxation spent with my sweet babe at my breast. When she needed nutrition, my breasts provided. When she needed comfort, my breasts provided. When she couldn't sleep and everything else guessed it, my breasts provided.

There were also struggles, namely mastitis, flat nipples, and an oversupply. And of course, we dealt with the usual issues like distracted nursing and teething. I remember being so nervous for her to get teeth that would inevitably graze my nipple (or worse). But we made it through all of the issues and challenges, and here we are on the other side.

Milk Coma

I always knew I would breastfeed. For me, there was no other option. As I learned more during pregnancy and then experienced breastfeeding, there was no doubt I'd nurse for a year and assess the situation. There was a brief time when I was feeling a bit "tied down" by nursing, and thought maybe I'd be grateful for the freedom after a year. As Nora was able to go longer in between nursing sessions, that feeling dissipated, and was replaced by me looking forward to sharing that special time together.

Breastfeeding on her birthday

Now that we're at the one year mark, I can't imagine stopping anytime soon. There is no doubt that the perfect situation for us is to allow Nora to self wean, when she decides it is time for our breastfeeding relationship to end. I know it will be a sad day for me, so I'm trying to slowly prepare myself for it. Now if I could only add a new squish so I could tandem nurse...

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