Friday, November 4, 2011

Still breastfeeding after 2 years

Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (November). For this month, we focus on extended breastfeeding. Participants will share their experiences and tips on breastfeeding their child/ren beyond 12 months. Please scroll down to the end of the post and check out the other carnival participants."

When I first got pregnant, one of the things that I immediately decided upon was that I'd breastfeed my child. And if he ever self-weaned before he was two, I told myself that I'd pump and give my expressed milk to him until his 2nd birthday just so that he'd be getting all those wonderful benefits of breastmilk. Especially since my husband's side of the family has all those illnesses I don't want my son to have when he'd grow older.

Well, now, Jack-Jack's already 25 months old, and with no sign of weaning anytime soon. I admittedly stopped expressing milk for him around a month before his 2nd birthday, because it was admittedly tiresome to lug around a cold bag with milk in it everyday, and also because there wasn't a dedicated lactation room in our office at that time that I pump inside a toilet cubicle. Yes, it's admittedly not the best place but even the clinic is crowded. I recently heard that there's now a lactation room but I have yet to inquire if it's true. I supplemented my diminishing supply of expressed milk with fresh milk and powdered milk (which I forgot to up the amount when my stash was completely consumed until his pedia check-up, thus the dilemna on his weight gain which I posted here and moaned about it here). But despite that, he still nurses directly from me before he goes to sleep at night, and when we're together during the weekends and I'm trying to make him nap. Even now when I'm already pregnant with my 2nd.

So our breastfeeding relationship continues. Our still on-going journey is like this: having a correct latch from the onset, minor problems on sore nipples during the first month, no biting when he was teething but he loves pulling my nipples out when he was done, having to slowly take it out when he's already fast asleep since he doesn't have the habit of letting it go himself, pulling my shirt up or tugging the neckline down when he wanted his milk, playing with me at night like trying/joking to latch on with my shirt still covering my breast, and several other instances like acrobatic stunts while nursing himself to sleep.

At 5 months...

At 21 months...

It was, and still is, a pretty easy relationship, despite having those sore nipples at the start or the (what I thought then as) neverending sessions during the first 2 weeks or not being to sleep longer than 3 hours during the night as he nurses in the middle of the night.

I think we're slowly on the way to weaning, in my opinion at least, as he now rarely roots for the breast in the middle of the night. Of course, I still wake up due to my full bladder courtesy of my pregnancy. It's one step towards his self-weaning. But I'm in no rush. It's now one of the precious moments I cherish since he's already growing up and I feel that it'd be one of the ways that he wouldn't feel left out when the new baby comes out. Until the day he's ready to stop requesting for my breast, I wouldn't refuse him when he asks.

Check out these posts from other participating bloggers (updated throughout the day):
  • Chronicles of a Nursing Mom - Barriers/Myths vs. Extended Breastfeeding
  • J and the Three Boys - No More "de-de"
  • My Mommyology - My Extended Breastfeeding Experience
  • Mommyluscious - Breastfeeding For Two Beyond Two
  • Truly Rich Mom - Truly Rich Tips for Moms: On Extended Breastfeeding (a perfectly normal thing to do!)
  • Got to Belive - Breastfeeding Room Story
  • apples & dumplings - My Constant Challenge with Extending Breastfeeding
  • Mommy Kwentos - Challenges and Rewards of Extended Breastfeeding
  • The Odyssey of Dina - nurturing rafael: extended breastfeeding, stretching some more lovin'
  • Legally Mom - Breastfeeding Beyond 1 Year: Barriers and Issues
  • Mec as Mom - Shooting for the Benefits, Extending the Love
  • Homeschooling Mommy - Yes, I've Got Milk
  • SOlovelyN - As long as he wants, I can
  • Life of a babywearing and breastfeeding mommy - Still breastfeeding after 2 years

    Jen CC Tan said...

    i was always lazy to pump. after K turned a year, with the advise of an LLLLeader, i stopped pumping! K was eating well naman. Have you every thought if Jack-Jack would want to nurse when baby 2 comes? tandem nursing? =)

    Martine said...

    I stopped pumping when Vito turned nine months, simply because he refused to take the bottle anymore I only used my pump from the time he was two months to the time he turned 8 months, though he started refusing expressed milk at around 7 months. (I'd just put the pumped milk in his baby food.)

    Still breastfeeding my son V now at 24 months... :)

    Laya Isabelle Garcellano-Florendo said...

    Yay! I'm not the only one breastfeeding while preggo :) Ako naman I didn't pump at all with Olly, only during the first few months, then I took her and her Ate everywere when I was mobile na and breastfed in parking lots, naka-hazard sa may sidewalk or parking spaces in front of places where errands took us :P I have yet to try those lactation rooms n the malls too pero soon, tandem nursing na ako.

    Pat Grace said...

    Jen - not sure if he'd want to tandem nurse pero feeling ko he'd vie for our attention and would want milk when the new baby comes in. haha. we'll see. :)

    Martine - mega pump ako until I got too lazy. haha. he didn't like the taste of fresh cow's milk so I really had to keep up with his demands. :D

    Laya - yes! I was about to comment on your post but was in the office so I was just sneaking reading posts. hee :) I'm hoping to experience tandem nursing but it's still far ahead so I'll take it one at a time.

    Truly Rich Mom aka Teacher Mama Tina said...

    Congrats on your achievement, nursing during pregnancy! ;-) It's something that I started but was not able to continue after the 4th month. :-) You and Laya are very encouraging tuloy - I will really strive for BF during pregnancy till tandem nursing too ;-) God bless in everything!

    apples & dumplings said...

    Oh sometimes I wish I can stop pumping na (Y is 14 months) and give her fresh milk already. What fresh milk did you give Jack Jack?

    Jenny @ Chronicles of A Nursing Mom said...

    Pat, same as you, i'm thinking that N might want to nurse when baby comes more for attention and comfort! Good luck to us!!

    Pat Grace said...

    Tina - thanks! it's admittedly quite challenging but we're overcoming the challenges. I still have to see how well we'll do when my tummy gets bigger. :D

    Apples & Dumplings - I gave him almost all the brands na. Hehe. It's just nowadays that he's really enjoying fresh cow's milk. Siguro kasi it's from the fridge and it's cold. :)

    Jenny - Good luck talaga. I'm praying he wouldn't compete. And that I can nurse them at the same time. Hay.

    Mec said...

    oh... i swear, you will always miss holding your child in that way when he's weaned na... it's not the same kasi when you're holding them lang... nakaka-miss talaga

    and it's only then that you really, really, really realize HOW intimate breastfeeding is...

    so really... enjoy the rest of your days, for as long as you still can...