Am I unintentionally weaning?

>> Wednesday, October 28, 2009

As I write this, Hubby and I are driving to Jacksonville from my parents' house in Ft. Walton Beach to go to the Gator game. Hooray!! This is one of the biggest games of the year and I have ALWAYS wanted to go. This is the beginning of our 10th wedding anniversary celebration. After the game we are driving to a house on the beach for a couple days before we head back to my parents' to pick up the boys. 4 kid-free days, a Gator game, time on the beach, sleeping in, lots of quality time with Hubby... It is gonna be awesome!

There is just one thing I am a bit concerned about. And, truthfully, I am not sure there is anyone left reading this blog as I have been so unfaithful to post lately. But if there is anyone reading this, I could use your input.
I have never left Caden overnight before. And while he has been doing great at sleeping through the night lately, I feel a little nervous about it. I know he'll be fine. He adores my parents and they'll keep him occupied and soothed. I am not really worried about that. I am worried about the nursing. I left my pump at home so I went and bought a cheapie hand pump so I could attempt to pump while I am gone. But, will 4 days of no nursing be the end of nursing for Caden and I? Will he be done or will he pick it back up as soon as he sees me?
And even if he wants to, will there be anything there for him after no baby stimulating milk production for 4 days?
He is almost 15 months so it wouldn't be the end of the world for him to be weaned. But I am not ready and he still nurses several times a day. At least he used to. Lucas nursed until almost 2 so I thought Caden and I had more time.
I am trying to mentally prepare myself that this may be the end of nursies. And it would REALLY be the end since Caden is most likely my last baby. Should I let this be the weaning process for Caden or be diligent to pump several times a day with this little hand pump and try to hold on?
I can't save any milk pumped 'cuz I have no way to get it home. It would be pumping just to try to keep the milk flowing. And if you know me, you know that I HATE pumping and I'm not super good at it.
Thoughts? Anyone? I could use your advice and/or encouragement. If anyone is still there, I mean. :)
Thanks for sticking with me if you are here.
And Go Gators!! Beat Georgia!!

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TwoSquareMeals October 31, 2009 at 2:19 PM  

I have no idea what does and does not work, since I have never even pumped, but my response assumes that pumping works to keep up supply.

I would say don't stress about it and just do what seems best to you. If the thought of weaning really makes you sad, then pump. If you only feel bad about it because you are feeling guilty, don't let that decide for you. Be free not to pump, enjoy your time away, and return home to find new ways to connect with Caden. If you think Caden really still needs to nurse, then try pumping a couple of times a day just to keep the supply up. If you have less milk, this is a great way to start the weaning process.

Whatever you do, you are not going to ruin your child's future or your relationship with him or your value as a mommy. I know moms can give others a guilt trip about the whole nursing thing, but it is one little piece of a very big picture of motherhood.

So be free to do what works best for you and enjoy your time away. And your ballgame!

Terra Jones October 31, 2009 at 6:25 PM  

I agree with everything TwoSquareMeals said. Of course, both my guys just up and stopped nursing one day, so I know nothing about weaning/trying to stop, etc... I just know that I was heart broken when they just quit w/ no warning.

I know you're enjoying your weekend, either way, b/c those Gators just beat the snot out of GA, lol :)

Atwood-Family of 4 November 1, 2009 at 8:22 AM  

I think it could really go either way. I think if you pump or not, either way you might lose the milk supply you might not. (So even if you pump you may lose it, if you don't you may not and vice versa.) same for Caden. He may be done w/ no nursing for 4 days he may not. As a lactaction counselor (did you know I am certified in that)? one of the things we learned was this mysterious stage of nursing that comes w/ toddlerhood-after 12 months or so of nursing. It is where your body starts to make milk on demand rather than supply and demand. So you the therory is you have a finiky toddler who one day needs lots of comfort and nurses 4x the next day is mr. independent nurses 1x the next day 5x the next day none. And instead of making more or less milk each day-like you would have w/ a newborn-your body starts to make it on demand. So it will have milk when he nurses but on the same token you will not get engorged if he doesn't. so basically, while, personally 4 days is a lot not to nurse, there is a chance you would still have milk left for Caden if he wants to nurse when you get back. (Also, did you have a chance to notice that months after L weaned you could still have milk? When A weaned, for an entire year after, if i tried to hand express, i could still get drops of milk.) this is normal and supports the on demand therory. Good luck either way and like the others have said, do what feels best and makes the most sense for you, knowing either way you choose it may not matter in the end.

Shannon @ Lullaby Baby Carriers November 1, 2009 at 12:44 PM  

Well, it seems you have received some great advice from the previous 3 comments and I don't know if I have much more to add.

My own experience was as Atwood Family of 4 indicated - for almost a full year after weaning my son, I could still express some milk, so I would be inclined to believe that after only 4 days, your milk production will come back without too much trouble.

I think you just do what feels best and don't worry too much about it... it will work out fine. Have fun away with your Hubby!

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Melinda November 6, 2009 at 10:13 PM  

Hiya girl. I really felt this post because nursing is near and dear to my heart. It's just so very personal. I do think that if you don't pump for 4 days the quality of the milk will change and Caden may or may not like it. I agree with Two Square Meals, either way Caden will be just fine. Good luck to you!

BTW I am back online in the house now, so please come by when you can!


PS Loving the sling!!

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