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Wednesday, March 09, 2011

To Wean, or Not to Wean: That is the Question


Our youngest son, Joshua, is no longer attached to the boob.  It's been a month and I think I'm having withdrawals.  I miss the closeness, providing nutritional food, but not the teeth.  Ouch!  I went back and forth with the question of whether to wean or not to wean.  My girlfriends kept telling me that he would decide, but I couldn't figure that out.  How would our 14-month-old son know how to decide if he wants to stop nursing?

Being a stay-at-work mom, Joshua and I established a routine that worked with both of our schedules.  I nursed him in the morning, pumped at work, nursed him in the evenings, and during nighttime feedings.  Fortunately, my colleague and I met with college administrators and established a comfortable and mom-friendly lactation room on campus.  My milk supply adjusted to our schedules and we were "bosom buddies" for 14 months.  Just recently, he gradually stopped nursing in the evenings and during the night.

Reflecting back on my nursing experience, I had several funny and awkward moments. The moment that stands out the most was when the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) guards at LaGuardia Airport inspected my breast milk packages with their wands.  I wrote an article about it titled, "Breast Milk in the Sky."

For over a year, my body provided nutritional food for our son.  The process had its ups and downs.  I'm thankful for the experience, because maternal immunity normally disappears after 6-8 months.  Breastfeeding isn't for everyone.  Sometimes a woman's milk supply doesn't “come in,” her immune system might be compromised, life style choices, medications, etc.  If you've nursed and have funny and/or memorable stories that you wish to share, please leave me a comment.  For anyone interested in nursing your child and need helpful tips, please feel free to leave a comment as well.  Let's share this experience together.


Family Photos: Allen Cooley Photography

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