Thursday, October 25, 2012

Breaking "Habits"

So, it's been almost a month since I quit nursing Eli...and what a tough month it has been! For a week after we stopped all he did was cry and refuse to sleep. It was like he had to relearn how to comfort himself since it was something we did often before bed time and nap time.

 Now, I am sure there are plenty of opinions on nursing a child as long as I did (27mos)...but if I cared, I wouldn't have done it that long.

I wanted a long nursing journey and I knew it was gonna be tough for us to stop. 
It took quite a few days for my body (boobs) to feel normal and then about a week after my hormones were through the roof!
 I was so angry all the scary angry.
And then I would cry for no reason...probably for being so ridiculously angry all the time!
Man, it was rough!

But I am glad that I put my foot down with him and stopped. I had played this yo-yo game with him for a few months of trying really hard to wean and lessening it and lessening it...but when it came down to it...
I had to just stop.

I knew nursing was an emotional attachment, but I really underestimated how much. 
What we are battling now is him constantly reaching into my shirt and in his words "I wanna hode" 
And the whole thing makes me so annoyed! I can't stand that he uses me as a cookie jar and even though he no longer nurses he still has somehow managed to find some comfort in it.
I've gotten so irritated that I have had to put him in timeouts for reaching in my shirt all the time! 

And then on the other hand, I completely miss nursing him.
Strange how that all works!

I realize this is a phase and will soon pass...but just wondering if there were other mommas who nursed an extended time and had a hard time breaking all the "habits"?

Leaving you with some cute photos from last week.

(Eli playing with the dog, throwing the ball around. He absolutely adores our dog, Jerry. Until, he takes the ball he was throwing him and decides to chomp it to bits.. sure to bring tears every time!) 


  1. Hi LeiShell,

    I nursed my son for 13 months.. I was basically his drinking bottle. Like you have said it is very difficult to cut the habit and the bond between mother and son is incrediblely strong!! Love every minute of that though..
    About reaching into my shirt, Yes i went though the same I moved his hand from the boob lavel to my tummy. This last for a long time and even now (he is 8 now) he likes to put his hand/face at my tummy.
    I had tough time leaving him at the kindergarten at age 3 coz we were just too attached to each other..It took him a month to stop crying for me.
    Beautiful memories.. i will do the same again given another chance ;P

  2. I have done extended nursing with all of my kids and it is always tough to quit. They seem to want to hang on. But, none of my kids ever liked or used pacifiers or loveys, or became attached to bottles, so I was their comfort. It was an adjustment to become more independent, just like many kids have trouble giving up other attachments. But they do grow out of it.

    Hang in there, it will get easier and this will pass ;)

  3. When we nurse our bodies release oxytocin (yep, the same chemical released when you orgasm), allowing the mother to relax and bond with her child. I could go on and on about how wonderful I think you've done by nursing Eli so long!
    On the flip side, you have to realize that, haha, you definitely are still viewed as his "cookie jar," but only because he misses the feeling of complete security that only nursing can offer. I wouldn't focus on punishing him for wanting this kind of security, but perhaps take it as a compliment - that your child wants you, and knows you're able to comfort him.
    With Lincoln, I exclusively breastfed for 12 months and we didn't stop for another 6. We introduced a "comfort object" (a stuffed turtle) early on, so maybe you could find something to replace your "cookie jar?" Next time Eli grabs for your boobs, offer a new stuffed animal and call it "hode." Make sure it smells like you - I stuck Lincoln's turtle in my shirt while I slept, and as weird as it sounds, young kids have a very strong sense of your smell, so it will be comforting to him. So maybe try replacement? It will take a while, but it's SO worth it!
    You've done awesome for nursing that long! Quit explaining that decision - anyone who doesn't "get it" doesn't really matter anyways. Good luck, and you did an amazing thing for your son :)

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