Weaning story

Breastfeeding is an unsentimental metaphor for how love works, in a way. You don't decide how much and how deeply to love - you respond to the beloved, and give with joy exactly as much as they want. (Marni Jackson)
Two weeks before she turned two was the last time she latched on. I have to remember it.

Wasn't a smooth journey, if I must say, not because I didn't have enough, but because I was fighting with my inner self to terminate our breastfeeding journey early. I intended to take medicine for my vitiligo, which contained steroid, and it can't be taken while breastfeeding. I felt like I was torturing myself by not taking medicines that I needed. On the other hand, I know it's not fair for my baby if I took away breastmilk that I still can provide - while lots of mother out there are struggling to give their babies breastmilk but they couldn't.

So, I chose to continue breastfeeding.

I won't say it's the best choice, because I have conditions. But I will say it's the wisest choice, for our relationship as a mother and a daughter. I feel like she's attached to me enough, we enjoyed our skin-to-skin contact every single day and we appreciated every minutes spent cuddling before napping/sleeping time. I'm thankful I chose this way, because it can't be repeated again, it's once in a life time between her and me. Now, that she's already weaned off, she becomes more independent; sometimes I feel like she can live without me (sad!) and for that I relieve we had that two years time inseparable.

The process of her being weaned off was very surprising, I didn't expect it happen so fast. At first, she cried a lot (obviously) for quite a long time, after she calmed down a little I asked her to climb to bed, and then she cried again (ps: I started it during night time - while others usually start during nap time). I distracted her with story time, then I asked her what she did the whole day. She listened to me while I was summarizing the whole day's activities to her, and then after a while she started to dozed off while starring at the window. The crying still continued after a while, but the length was decreasing each day. And until one day, she didn't cry anymore, it got easier with the bedtime routine each night.

After I win during night time, I started the daytime sleep training. It didn't happen as easy as night time sleep training, as expected. Daytime was the time when she was active and her brain was full with stuffs she wants to do, sometimes she was sleepy but refusing to sleep, then she got cranky.
Sometimes she was sleepy before the nap time, but I didn't realize it, so we passed her "sleepy" time. And when it's nap time, I tried to bring her to sleep but she wasn't sleepy anymore.

My trick was to let her asleep on my chest. For weeks, that's what I did. Until one day, I got a terrible backache and couldn't move for days. So we stopped the trick and went on with the basic way. I told her that my back was really hurt and if she sleep on my chest, I won't be able to bring her out to the playground. She understood. So she dozed off while holding my hand.

One day, I realized that it was it, it's the end of the breastfeeding journey, so I let her to latch on for the last time and I cried a little. We did it! We were in the finish line, finishing the long two years journey together, hand by hand.

Thank you for letting me sharing love, Iola. And yes, I miss you.


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