In the category of "Mommy Blogs": a chronicle of my life in Chicago and wherever it takes me. Stories from my past.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Teeny Weeny Weaning

As we prepare for this life transition, and as Maya Bird is one year and 1 week old now, we've decided that it's time to wean her. Wean her from our love? No. Wean her from our affection? No. Wean her from our near CONSTANT attention? hmmm. Wean her from my breasts? Absolutely.
We have a small problem, though. This child is Willful. And when I say that, I mean that she knows what she wants, and does everything in her power to get it. And I mean that she is just like her father, Will, who knows what he wants and does everything in his power to get it. I've started by taking away her two morning feedings and replacing them with delicious (and insanely messy) peanut butter toast. Somehow, though, breakfast always seems to be followed by the hard skull of my baby crashing full force into my chest, pulling my shirt down as I pull her out of her high chair. "No, Maya, " I say, "Not now." This sends her into a super sonic wail accompanied by the most acrobatic contortions ever witnessed by man. Can you touch your heels with the back of your head? My baby can. Thankfully, she is extra sticky after the peanut butter, and I haven't dropped her yet.
I know this must sound familiar to Those Who Have Traveled This Road Before, but, for me, this is new and painful and difficult. As I write this now, I heat her waking from her morning nap. Time to start it all again.

Teeny Weeny Weaning


At 9:31 AM, Blogger Greenthumb said...

I'm just wondering what acrobatic moves Will has when you say, "No Will, not now..I have a headache."

I'll leave the advice to those who know.

At 12:44 PM, Blogger Circus Kelli said...

Mamaramma - I'm sorry I have no advice (good or bad) to give you on this. I bottle-fed our three little clowns.

Weaning kids from *anything* can be so trying, and frustrating, and just plain awful to go through.

I can offer you some encouragement, though...
Good luck, Susie. And hugs. You'll all make it through this.

At 2:11 PM, Anonymous Amanda B. said...

Argh. Finally blogger lets me comment. Only I have no advice either. Sorry.

I wish you luck with the weaning. :)

At 2:14 PM, Blogger Susie said...

Oh, this sounds tough. Our weaning was veeeerrryy gradual. I didn't need to wean for any reason, and I left it up to LG. I know the last to go was the before bedtime nursing, that went on up until about 18 months. Other than that, when she became mobile, she just had better things to do with her time than hang around in my arms, and she could take her sippy cup with her. I think that helped, there was never a bottle involved, just a big girl sippy cup. (That's a whole 'nother Oprah, the no-bottle-ever story.) Whatever you do, you'll both be fine, especially Maya. It's the love and nutrition that's important, more so than the spigot. (Is that the right word?)

At 2:43 PM, Blogger Andrea said...

Like Susie, I let my older one wean herself, but she was a bit older than LG's 18 months! However, I know of a good book called How Weaning Happens that's recommended by La Leche League; maybe your library has it.

Good luck, and good for you for going a whole year!

At 7:23 PM, Anonymous mrtl said...

Mamma, weaning Bug was simple (although not planned), so maybe you can use some reverse psychology and do what we didn't realize we were doing.

While nursing, have something really interesting/captivating/ spectacular going on in the room. Her favorite video? Daddy dancing? Stupid pet tricks? Something Maya would love to watch, but can't while nursing. She'll want to keep eating, but she'll want to watch, too. It will drive her nuts. (I'll warn you now, Bug wanted to constantly turn her head WHILE STILL LATCHED ON, causing me an immense amount of pain.) Sooner or later, you can offer a bottle/cup, and sooner or later, she'll realize that she can have her cake and eat it, too.

Good luck!!

At 6:45 AM, Anonymous Emmylou Harris said...

Dear Susie,

I enjoy reading your website, and thought I'd de-lurk today. It's de-lurking day in the Land of Famous People.

I hope you don't mind me using the nickname that your grandmother uses; I just feel so close to you, and admire you so much.

After you wean Maya Wren (beautiful name), and tell us how you did it, I'm going to write a song about it. A song that will help nursing mothers all over the world reclaim the breasts that are rightfully theirs. (And husbands will like it, too.)

Your fan,

At 8:22 AM, Blogger Cat said...

Whoa. MAJOR flashbacks, I'm telling you. Oh. Except, I weaned cold-turkey. COLD TURKEY. To put it mildly, "Ouch." Let's just say I single-handedly funded the Christmas bonuses for employees of ibuprofen manufacturers, shall we?

Anyway, I started on the baby cereal at around 6 or 7 months, and I started with the sippy cups at a year. I supposed the nipple just seemed like WAAAAY too much work to my children because the transition was pretty stress-free. On their part, anyway. Seriously. I just stopped nursing. I remember missing the closeness, but absolutely LOVING the freedom. Sweet freedom.

It's crazy how we all have different ways of doing things, eh?

Hang in there. :)

At 10:12 AM, Blogger Mamaramma said...

greenie - Well, le me tell you! He ***This response has been censored by the administrator***

CK - Knowing that this too shall pass is one of the best helps around. Thanks

amanda b - thanks; I know blogger is being a stinky whore lately

susie - I know this may sound horrible to some attachment parenters out there -within whose ranks I mildly include myself - but I think I need this more than anything. Sometimes I get angry that I'm the only one who can meet her needs (no bottle for Maya, either - she refused from day one (at 2 months) to day 264 and eventually we gave up), that I'm the only one who can put her to bed, that I can never be out of the house at night because she needs me at bedtime. I'm craving some freedom right now, but it's also hard because I don't want to make her suffer because of what I want. But is she suffering or is she just pouty because she's not getting what she wants when she wants it?? OH THE AGONY!

Andrea - Thanks for the book recommendation. I'll look into it. I have a feeling I know what they're going to say though - i.e. DON'T wean until Maya wants me to.

mrtl - I've actually tried that too, to no avail. She's wise on that one. And like her mother, she always chooses food over entertainment. Especially food of the dairy variety!

Emmylou! Oh my God! Thanks for coming by. I'm so honored that you're going to write a song about my weaning process.
p.s. Hi Susie???

Cat - That's what our Ped. told us to do - cold turkey. Instead, I'm cold turkeying my right breast - or "Righty" as I like to call her. She is THE PRODUCER and way bigger than her sis, Lefty through this whole process. I figure, if I kill her now, and left Lefty live, maybe they'll even out. Hmmm, I'm getting an idea for a new post!

At 11:20 AM, Blogger Greenthumb said...

LOL!!! I'm so dying right now...administrator. LMAO!!! that and blogger being a 'stinky whore'.


At 12:04 PM, Blogger Susie said...

OK, you know about the NEVER a bottle thing. Many people won't believe that's possible, but you know it is. Say this with me:

Happy Mama means happy baby!

The best thing you can do for all three of you is to take excellent care of you, physically and emotionally. I know exactly what you're talking about, with the NO ONE else but me. In emergency situations (there were a couple), I pumped and someone used an Avent bottle with a weird little rubber spout thing, to just pour the milk into LG's mouth (and down her body). NO WAY a rubber nipple was passing her lips. She refused. She did like the sippy cup, though. And used it earlier than any of her "friends." A year is WAAAAAAY longer than most. You are not doing anything wrong.

At 1:15 PM, Blogger Mamaramma said...

Greenthumb - (singin' Aretha-style) You make me feel, you make me feel, you make me feel like a natural blogger- Blogger!

Susie- Thanks for your support. Can you be my therapist? I agree with you on the happy mama=happy baby philosophy. You are so kind, generous, and wise. Thanks for your wonderful words - they mean a lot!

At 3:39 PM, Blogger Andrea said...

I'm with Susie! I'm pretty hard-core AP, but my overall motto is "you do what's best for BOTH of you." If you're not enjoying it enough to continue, you're going to start resenting it, and she'll pick up on that. Wouldn't contribute well to attachment then, would it? MY attachment parenting mama friends would nail me to the wall for this view, but whatever :) Do look at the book, I think you'll find that, though yes, it will encourage you to continue, it will also have some strategies for making weaning simpler.

At 11:15 AM, Blogger Annejelynn said...

oh my - may god be with you and your family as you approach this endeavor before you...

At 1:04 PM, Blogger Random and Odd said...

This crash test dummy didn't have to hit that wall, I only made it three months.

I will send you all my good boobless vibes though.

At 10:27 AM, Blogger Roy Naka said...

Cool blog you have going here, I will check in often! I have a similar site about dog breeding. It pretty much covers dog breeding related stuff.

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