A Leaking Faucet: Weaning and Other Spills

Dear Friends,
What do you do when your baby shows signs of growing up? Signs you can't ignore? Signs you'd much rather push into the back of your mind and not think about. Signs that leave you as a squeaking, blithering, leaky faucet?

Signs like... say, weaning himself?

He's ONLY eighteen months old.
Do you see a problem with this?
My heart is screaming,

"He's not ready!"

"I'm not ready!"

"We're not ready!"

He's been a champion nurser. At ten pounds fourteen ounces, he was hungry from the moment he was born. I figured he would nurse 'til he was seven or eight... OK! Maybe two or three, but still!

He's only a baby! I guess I'm just sad that this stage is over. I'm disappointed he needs me that much less. I'm weepy at the thought of him moving past this milestone.

We were a team.
How would you like it if half of your team just stopped doing their part? Huh?

Imagine... You wake up one morning, go to nurse your son and he's suddenly forgotten everything he learned in the Suckling Instincts 101 class-womb.

How do you forget how to eat?
How could this happen?
Has anyone heard of this happening?
I mean, I can understand if you forget how to STOP eating! I have to take refresher courses on this all the time. But I always remember how to start again.

He was my nursing pro. He had countless hours of experience. And he literally woke up one day and had forgotten how to do it properly. I don't know what he's doing wrong but I do know it hurts like the dickens. Oh, and it sounds a lot like a sump-pump with a blown gasket.

I made that up.
I don't even know if sump-pumps have gaskets.
Let alone what sound they make.

Have you ever had to call your best breastfeeding advocate (in my case, my mom) to try to explain your 'problem' over the phone?

"Well, ummmm... it sounds kinda like ssssllllip---sssssrrrrrp*sssskkkkkggggpppppph*"

On the other hand, if you've been on the receiving end of one of these calls, I commend you. You are a super hero... and you have a much better appreciation for what mechanics feel like when frantic women (read: like me) call to tell them about the strange sounds coming from under the hood.

We could get into all kinds of strange metaphors here, couldn't we?

But we won't. Because telling you too much information about my bodily condition, emotional instability and general leakiness over this situation is enough. I wouldn't want to embarrass you, or anything.

I think I'll be okay. We'll move on. I'll rock him to sleep just to snatch some cuddle time. He'll nuzzle his little nose in my shirt and smile sleepily up at me. He's healthy, whole and beautiful.

I'm leaking again.

Mostly because he won't ever remember what this time of our lives was like. He won't remember 'nye-nye' with 'ma-ma'.

But I will.

A Puddle in NE


  1. dear MamaPuddleDuck,

    Excuse me, MY EYES are leaking now.

    This Mama Remembers Nursing/weaning emotions
    SO well

  2. NO! He can't stop nursing just like that! Does he want to nurse at ALL?!
    Maybe it's just a phase he's going through. Maybe by the time the weekend is over he'll remember again! I think both of my kids went through stages where I though they were weaning but then they picked it up again. (and they both had plenty of opportunity to wean since I left them for weekends / extended weekends with Grammie's, while they were still nursing! <18 months though.)

    I would have a TERRIBLE time with that, I would be a wreck! Kyrie self weaned at 21 months and that was fine with me, I was pregnant with Trey and not really wanting to think about tandem nursing, so it was all good. Trey would have gone on nursing forever but I cut him off at 27 months - he was constantly getting distracted and not paying attention and it was starting to drive me nuts. We made it a month past his surgery, which was my goal. So both times, I was ready and really wasn't sad, although I was sadder with Trey because he was such a sweet nurser and he got all giggly and lovey when he wanted to nurse - but he still does that over other things so that's ok.

    Guess you'll just have to have another! ;)

  3. Awwww!
    I remember Jessi weaning. I was SO ready. And so was she as she's the one who did it. And then a few months later she'd stare longingly at me like she was remembering and it made me sad.

    I hurt so bad right now nursing B. But that's another story and more due to the fact that I'm pregnant, not that he's forgetting how to nurse.

  4. ok, ok, so my eyes are leaking now too. :( They've been doing a LOT of that lately, unfortunately. I just can't get the faucet to turn off. (Or keep the gaskets from blowing sometimes!) Our kids just have no idea what they put us through - or maybe I should say, what we go through because of our love for them. And you're right, they won't remember this time with us, but we'll always remember. Much love to you!

  5. oh! I'm so snorting with laughter at your descriptions, and sad for you at the same time! Brings back lots of memories!

  6. I say its time for another :)

    Our kids were all 14=1/2 mos apart. so at 6ish months, I was pregnant with the next one. I was thankful they were weaned, so I could exclusivly nurse the new baby, and so on. my youngest was a biter towards the end.. so we both were happy when we stopped. but its sad when a chapter ends. but then it's onto the next chapter of life!

  7. It is never easy to have any chapter come to an end...any chapter. But thankfully we have our memories of the sweet times with our babies.

  8. 1) maybe, just maybe, it's just a "window" and not the real deal. i went through that with m2.
    2) has he gotten a new tooth? it can change their suck and they have to re-learn.
    3) are you pregnant?
    4) has someone told him not to nurse? (cruel, but i've know cases of this - and they will refuse)
    5) will he nurse when asleep or sleepy? if so - and you want to - you may we be able to perseveres through this.
    6) IF he truly seems ok, truly seems not to need it or miss it...then remember that the word in the Bible for "weaned" means to be "filled up", ie to the point of no longer in need. you have done (that part of) your job, dear momma.

    your friend, B-kins

  9. Oh I have to say I laughed and just about cried reading this. I know the time will come with Little Bit also but most times I hope not soon. Its such sweet cuddle time and they are getting so idependent otherwise. Sometimes she can go all day without but when it comes to bed time or nap then mommy needs to be there. Feeling for you.

  10. Dear Friends,
    Thank you so much for your sweet words of wisdom. I'm so glad I have you all as friends/family.

    Here's a little more detail:
    1. He hasn't actually really nursed for about three weeks now so I'm pretty sure it's not just a window.
    2. I'm sad but coping. Kinda emotional... especially when he acts like he would like to nurse but then just doesn't "get-it".

    3. NOT PREGNANT ;) Really! No thrush or any other medical reason for this.

    4. He had been only nursing at night for sometime now

    Too tired for numbering...

    We started putting him to bed in his own bed and then he would wake up and come back into ours sometime in the night.

    He has two eyeteeth coming in on the bottom.

    His latch was WAY wrong and is kinda like a carp gulping and flapping and mouthing around NOT like the sweet baby boy nursling I had once!!!

    He's nursing like he drinks from his sippy cup.

    He wants to keep doing it but it just doesn't work. I hurt. He gets upset because it isn't right.

    So we don't do it anymore and he's fine.

    He's been sick.
    I'm getting sick as we speak.

    I was invited to go to Le Leache League on Tuesday night but as much as I'd love to see some of my long-lost friends from there... I can't go... I'll hide at home... a bit too raw right now to wanna play on that heart-string!

    I always told you I was a chicken.

    The Leaky One In NE

    P.S. Anybody have any questions... I'm unloading ALL I've got here can't you tell? Better get your bid in for my guts at the rate I'm spilling 'em!!! :)

    Love you all!

  11. Waaahhh!!! (wipe--snort)

    Poor you, poor him, poor us that have to read all about it and feel our milk letting down even though we haven't nursed in over a year (or is that just me?).

    Snuggling that baby is the only relief. Boo-hoo! Lisa~

  12. Fond memories... they do seem to know when it's time.


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