We welcomed our second son into this world on September 26, 2019. There was no doubt in my mind that he would be breastfed. I was determined this time around to breastfeed as long as he would let me. With our first son because my supply dropped after I had to return to work I was unable to strictly breastfeed him and I felt like a big fat failure.
Fast forward 6 months later and I was working from home at the start of Covid-19. Our family chose to remove our little ones from daycare, so they were home with me. While being home daily I was able to breastfeed our son on demand. Unlike with my first son, my milk supply was in hyper drive! I was able to pump and store even while breastfeeding on demand.
My goal was to strictly breastfeed up to 1 year and then start to wean, well my son had other plans. We started the weaning process shortly after his 1st birthday and It wasn’t until he was 17 months old that my son no longer needed the comforts from breastfeeding. It was a frustrating 5 months of weaning. The late night tantrums from not being able to nurse, the cries from both he and myself, the giving up and starting over. Even now at 23 months he still has to lay his face against my breasts when he’s sleepy.
Thinking back on my breastfeeding journey this time around, one of my favorite moments that I miss the most was the way that my son would lay in my arms, looking up at me, smiling, and how his little hand would caress my cheek as I would sing to him. Those moments are long gone and I now have a spunky 23 month old who wouldn’t dare let me hold him too long.
Although both breastfeeding journeys with my sons were different, because for some reason I thought that they would be similar, both times gave me a very special bonding experience that I miss dearly but am ever so grateful I was able to have.
Breastfeeding is no easy task for mothers, whether it comes naturally or if you have to go it another way. I will leave you with this, be patient and be kind to yourself along this breastfeeding journey whether you are in the beginning or nearing the end. Frustration will happen and it’s okay.
“A mothers love endures through all.”
~ Washington Irving
Join Women AdvaNCe for Black Breastfeeding Week, August 25-31.