It’s 3:00 a.m., and the room is dark, but not dark enough that I cannot see. Lying in my arms is the sweetest little bundle of terror; my screaming bear of a baby has finally passed out from exhaustion. Knowing the slightest movement will wake her, I try not to move. My body is stiff and sore, I haven’t slept in days, and I feel like I’ve been hit by a truck. Although I have never experienced this, the comparison seems spot on. I am currently in Day 12 of weaning my exclusively breastfed baby, and I’m sending out an SOS.
(This is where my dad stops reading.)
I made the decision to exclusively breastfeed all three of my babies until they turned one. AKA, my mom (lovingly, of course) pressured the heck out of me to breastfeed. In all reality, everyone said “Breast is best” so I thought, Well okay, let’s do that then. Luckily, my cup runneth over and I had no problem committing a full year to nursing.
There are so many pros to breast feeding, aside from the health benefits. A big pro for me was that four letter word my doctor so eloquently used: “It’s free!” Now that I am older and much, much wiser, I’ve learned nothing in this world is free. Yes, I may have saved thousands of dollars on formula, but my kids have literally sucked the life out of me via my Ta-Tas. I wouldn’t exactly consider that free. Because of my sacrifice, plastic surgery is the only way to restore these ladies to their former glory. When you do the math, it would have been cheaper to go the formula route and I would still look like a youngish woman.
What once was easy and convenient with my first two kids, has not been so with my third. Being a 24/7 diner is not all it’s cracked up to be. Waking up all hours of the night to nurse seemed normal, until we hit the nine-month mark. Never interested in daytime feedings, Amelia would turn into a bosom zombie by night, screaming until I finally fed her. After a well visit, the doctor informed me she was comfort nursing and further explained I was being used as a human pacifier. This revelation is what my nightmares are made of.
Hello, cabbage-stuffed bras. (No lie, it works.)
When the pediatrician said my child sees me as her “Patches”, that was the moment I decided it was time to wean her. According to the online mom forums, I’m a terrible mother for choosing to stop breastfeeding. If I took their advice, Amelia would be going into grade school before she weaned. Now that is a nightmare! While it seems that nightmare will be my life, I know that this too shall pass
and one day I will look back and miss it.
Three days into weaning, the feeling I’ve created a monster, fell over me. Over time, I learned Amelia would semi-calm down by watching Netflix specials about wild animals in Africa. Ironically enough, I related to the prey while my carnivorous child attempted to tunnel her way into my shirt. All I need is a charming British man to narrate my journey of weaning and we’d have a good NatGEO special.
Watch as the baby screams, pulling at her mum’s blouse, much like the unstoppable force of a small T-Rex.
I really wish this was an inspirational, I’ve-already-made-it-to-the-other-side story, partly for you but mostly for me. But alas, I am in the midst of this storm and can only offer words of warning to those who are going to go through this: Winter is coming, and I’m right here with you, Mama! Sending out an SOS on behalf of every mom who can relate. Let’s raise our breast pumps and cheers to a new day, because [according to the bible] joy comes with the morning light. Amen and Hallelujah . . . now, where’s the tylenol?