photo taken in April 2009
This week seemed to pass me by in a whisper of sorts even though something big happened: Kyan is now weaned. Our journey to this moment was filled with joys and tears, and the slow and steady pace that I am sure is how he will approach many future milestones in his life. This pace was not mine, it was his. There were moments of sleep-deprived delirium for me where his need for me and nursing made me feel like I may loose my mind, and then things would change slightly and we'd be okay again. Before he was born 2 years seemed like the ideal amount of breastfeeding time to me but as his second birthday approached I saw that I needed to make some little pushes towards weaning and take it one day at a time.
I had heard stories from both sides, of children who had weaned themselves and others who had needed some encouragement. I desperately wanted him to loose interest but he didn't. Our nursing relationship started off with the typical sore nipples and botched latches but after a few weeks we were a good team and he never looked back. This boy likes his "malk." In my ideal world he would have decided he was done and just lost interest but for whatever reasons that didn't occur and so I began to slowly work with Ky to help him let go of nursing one feeding at a time. Luckily he is very perceptive and good at verbalizing his feelings so we have talked through this process the whole way.
The process involved extra mama time, extra hugs, and repetition. Fevers and teething didn't help and were exceptions to any steps forward but such is life with a toddler. Last month as I sensed a slight disinterest from him at bedtime I came to see that nap time nursing would be the last to go. Emotions rose inside me as well because I realized that he would not remember this time. The residual effects will remain in our bond and hopefully give him a good sense of self in his life but the small moments, the cozy parts, the giggles and comfort, not to mention the nourishment are no more. As the time approached to give up the last nursing I felt sad and wished that somehow he would remember but nature creates these processes to get humans where they need to go. There is not much room for sentimentality in this journey. Life moves, breathes and grows and so I will carry this time with me forever as a glorious, often challenging and special memory. It was a gift to share myself with him for this long but now our journey continues in a different way. And my "little boy" as he likes to call himself, moves closer to being a "big boy" someday.
Amy at Progressive Pioneer is sharing birth stories once a week until the birth of her second child. Today she posted another version of Kyan's birth story from the one that I posted here on his first birthday. Head on over and have a read if you are interested.