Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Nursing a Toddler

Nursing a toddler isn't quite what I expected. That said, I didn't expect much. I didn't really think about it at all. I figured I'd nurse as long as things worked out well. My frame of mind was that if something happened that made it too challenging, we would quit. Hopefully, we'd get at least 6 months.

I had a c-section, and I heard we might have trouble nursing as a result. We didn't.

I got mastitis, and it was really challenging to continue nursing, but it was also the best cure because it helped with the engorgement.

After that, nursing has been a breeze, and it's aided us through a lot of situations. It's served to feed MetaBaby when he was hungry, settle him in unfamiliar situations (e.g., airplane), and calm him enough to sleep when overly tired. It's also been a comfort to him when he's under stress, like when he's teething.

It's amusing to note the changes in how he nurses though. When he was really young, I cradled him with the aid of My Brest Friend (yes, that's what it's actually called, and it works like a dream because it protected my c-section scar) until he got too big for it. When he got too big and active for cradling, I tried a different approach that has worked quite well up until now. I sit him on my lap facing me, and if he's feeling cuddly, he can hug me. However, he usually feels more like dinner and a show, so he entertains himself by playing with my belly...the one he stretched out. And he laughs. Cute? Yes. Mean? Oh ya! He also lets me know he's hungry by walking up to me and lifting my shirt. Fortunately, he hasn't started doing that parlor trick in public yet. *le sigh*

I'm not sure how much longer nursing will last. Currently, he's only feeding once in the morning and once at night. It certainly doesn't offer him enough to stave off hunger since he usually ends up asking for "more" once he's finished. I figure he'll regress once teething flares up again. Only time will tell.