30 July 2007

got milk?

not for long.

bebe and i are embarking on night three of Night Weaning, which is when he mostly nurses these days.

i. am. tired.

it has been much easier than i thought in some respects. i spent the days leading up to the big first night telling him what was going to happen. he's only cried a little, both nights, and for the shortest of times - but he still wakes up a couple of times and asks for milk. i tell him that nursies are sleeping and they'll wake up when the sun comes up. i tell him to go back to sleep and there will be a little surprise for him in the morning. i tell him that babies nurse and big pirates drink water from a cup. i got him several little finger puppets, and i've been giving him one each morning in honor of his newfound big boy-ness... he is very proud of himself each morning.

no one told me what a bittersweet time this would be. last night, he asked if he could pretend to nurse as he was trying to relax. he sounded so sad. i can't help but wonder if i'm forcing him to stop before he's ready to based on some man-made societal ideal i'm subconsciously conforming to. he has nursed his entire life, literally, from the second he was born. nursing is as natural to him as breathing, and i feel as if i'm ripping it away from him in those moments when he feels sad... we will find new ways to comfort and relax, i know. all of the literature says to nurse, if you can, for the first two years of life. we did. and now that he is a few months past that, i get "the look" when i say he hasn't weaned - followed by a laundry list of how to and why i should. to be fair, i got that a lot when he was 6 months old as well. but i want to do what is best for him. always.

the thought of sleeping through the night for the first time in 3 years is an appealing one - i won't lie. and while i celebrate each of bebe's accomplishments with wild clapping, indescribable happiness, pride, awe and amazement in experiencing my once wee one evolve - i feel a sad tugging in me. it brings tears if i think about it for too long. weaning is yet another remarkable milestone in bebe's life, and at the same time, it is one that ultimately means that he needs me less and less as the days and months and years progress. i felt this way a little when he crawled for the first time, again when he walked, and again as the words came tumbling out. with each change, the tug gets a bit stronger. it isn't always there, but pops up briefly, as an exclamation point that jolts me to my core. as much as i try to live in the moment, knowing it is all we truly have, i can't help but see those tiny feet growing longer and eventually walking through the door to make a life that will be his own.

speaking of tiny feet, they are especially a-patter to and fro today. i think i shall scoop them up and cover them in smooches until he laughs so hard he wiggles away. these days and moments, they go by so quickly since he arrived. i don't want to miss a one. or take any of them for granted.

i never knew that i could love someone so very much... i'm humbled by its ability to choke me up like it does, like i'am right now, just saying all of this out loud.



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