Monday, March 22, 2010

Breastfeeding is how I connect with my little one after work

Welcome to the March carnival of breastfeeding! This month's theme is "the joys of breastfeeding".

When I started breastfeeding, I was amazed, and amused, at how my baby would automatically turn his head towards the breast of whoever was holding him, and reach out with his mouth for a drink. Especially when he was fussing already, obviously hungry, he'd try to latch on and suck. But now that he's older (almost six months!) and can clearly see who's carrying him, he only turns his head for a drink with me.

As a full-time working mom, I always miss Jack-Jack when I'm at work. There's a constant fear I have, that he'd be more closer to his caregiver, with whom he's with and sees all-day... Than me who he only sees early in the morning before I go to work, at night when I go home, and on weekends. He's growing up so fast and sometimes, he wouldn't immediately come to me when I get home. But then he'd give me a sweet smile and then I'd feel just a little bit of relief.

So I always look forward to bedtimes. I'd give him his bath, a light massage (to which he'd fuss by the time I'm dressing him), and then off to nighttime feeding. He'd be turning left and right, looking at me, as tho, voicing out his want, his last feed for the night before drifting off to sleep.

I cherish these moments with him, especially in the wee hours of the morning when he'd wake up a bit hungry, mouth pouting, and when he feels me turning him for the proper position, his mouth starts searching for my breast. He immediately quiets down after latching on. These moments with him at night lets me wind down from a busy day at work and focus on my little one. It lets me reconnect with him, as we both soothe each other as he nurses, letting me relax and bask in the moment, as he in turn gets his nourishment, comfort, and sleep. It eases the fear in my heart when I'm not with him, and it's like he's letting me know that he knows I'm his mommy, and that nothing can ever change that.

Check out these posts from other participating bloggers (updated throughout the day):
  • Hobo Mama: No need to count calories when breastfeeding
  • Melodie @ Breastfeeding Moms Unite: Poems about the joys of breastfeeding
  • Whozat @ Lucy & Ethel Have a Baby: Nursing My Little Person
  • Maman A Droit: A Joyful List
  • Chronicles of a Nursing Mom: Top Five Things I love About Breastfeeding
  • Dionna @ Code Name: Mama: Milk Songs
  • Sheryl @ Little Snowflakes: The Joys of Nursing to Sleep
  • Sarah @ Good Enough Mummy: You Don't Have to Be Crunchy to Like Breastfeeding
  • Tanya @ Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog: Things I loved about breastfeeding my son
  • Mandy @ Living Peacefully With Children: Nursing Haikus
  • Elita @ Blacktating: What Makes Breastfeeding So Great

    Jenny said...

    hi pat! great to see another pinay mom out here :D. like you, i'm also a working mom and i always look forward to bedtime and snuggling with naima :)

    Melodie said...

    Night times are some of the most beautiful times for connecting with your nursling. And the release of those relaxing hormones mamas get by nursing at night and in the wee hours of the morning make for some wonderful memories.

    Lauren @ Hobo Mama said...

    Oh, sweet! I didn't even leave my baby that long when he was that age, and I still had those fears that he'd stop preferring me whenever I did. But there's such a connection at the breast, isn't there? Beautiful story. I'm so glad you have such special times together.

    Maman A Droit said...

    I love that you mentioned nursing soothing both of you-it's so true! It seems like when I am having a bad day or am just frustrated with something, nursing makes it all melt away.

    Dionna said...

    I love this sweet picture you've painted. Nursing at night is absolutely one of the best times to connect.

    ~Dionna @ Code Name: Mama

    Olivia said...

    I'm a full-time working mother, too, and the night time nursing is a such a wonderful thing. I crave it at least as much as my daughter does.

    Pat Grace said...

    Jenny - Hi! I've been following your blog and decided to join the carnival as well. :) And yes. I always look forward to the time I can finally come home and be with my baby, even if it's just to put him to sleep already.

    Melody, Lauren, Dionna, Olivia - It is a beautiful time to connect. All is quiet and it'd seem that it's just you and your little one.

    Maman A Droit - So true. It's like all the bad things disappear and all you can see are good (and cute!) things (the baby!).

    Anonymous said...

    I love hearing about WOHMs nursing and reconnecting. I think it's important to let others know that you can make breastfeeding work even if you work away from home or have difficulties.

    Anonymous said...

    Even as a stay-at-home mom it's still nice to reconnect with your little one through breastfeeding. Peanut just turned one and she is running around like crazy all day. Sometimes she goes hours without nursing and without even really caring that I'm there, but when she decides to nurse we sit there calmly and she plays with me and we get to reconnect.

    Elita said...

    Breastfeeding saved my sanity once I went back to work. That serious surge of oxytocin was what I really needed after a long and stressful day at work. I remember my son would often choke because my milk would letdown the second I got him in my arms!

    Anonymous said...

    This is beautiful! I am working now too and my favorite part of each day is when I get home and hold my son in my arms and nurse him! It is such a wonderful way for us to reconnect after a crazy and hectic day apart. Plus it gives me a few minutes to rest and put my feet up before the toddler chasing begins!

    Pat Grace said...

    Elita - My son would sometimes take a break from nursing at the start and then I'd see milk spraying like crazy and I'd yell at my husband to get me a towel or something so Jack-Jack wouldn't soak until the letdown would be a more manageable level for my son.

    Alexandra said...