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The end of an era.

The End of an Era.

When Little R turned one, I stopped feeding her. She wasn’t really interested and I was more breastfeeding because I wanted to continue, rather than because she wanted to continue. I was feeding her in the morning because I was too lazy to go downstairs to make her a drink, and I would feed her before her morning and afternoon naps. Since finishing breastfeeding, Little R hasn’t asked for milk once, and she hasn’t been bothered that she is no longer able to have it. I, on the other hand, am gutted. The night that she had her final feed, I sobbed and I sobbed to my husband because I wasn’t ready to stop. I understand that people have different opinions on breastfeeding but for me, it was the greatest achievement of my life. I struggled so much at the beginning and it was husband that helped me through it. He was the one who would be awake with me until the early hours of the morning whilst I sobbed my way through nursing Little R. When my chest was engorged and painful, it was my husband who would hold Little R whilst I went for a shower to help relieve the swelling. For the first couple of months, breastfeeding was the hardest thing that I have ever faced, but I am now left heartbroken that this period of my life has come to an end. I have received much advice on breastfeeding, since the day that I found out I was pregnant, until the day I Little R had her last feed. People felt that it was acceptable to tell me how long to feed her for, whether I was feeding her enough, whether I had fed her for too long.

Now that breastfeeding has come to an end, Little R is much more independent. Whilst she was nursing, we could have cuddles in the morning and before naps but now Little R is becoming a little girl and no longer needs the cuddles that we used to have. Unless she is poorly, she spends all of her time exploring and playing, and she can entertain herself for such long periods of time, I rarely even get a backwards glance. It scares me how quickly she is growing, and my heart aches because she changes so much every day. She is unrecognisable as the newborn baby that I brought home just over a year ago. (She has much less hair now, too.)

Obviously, there has been a few benefits to stopping the breastfeeding. I no longer have to wear nursing bras and my lingerie collection has massively expanded. I can wear whatever I want to and my wardrobe is no longer planned around convenience – I sometimes even wear high neck tops! It also means that I can drink properly and in two weeks’ time, Little R will be having her first ever sleepover whilst I husband and I go away for the evening! I am a bundle of emotions: I am so excited to spend an evening away but I am also terrified: what if something happens?! If I had continued breastfeeding, however, we wouldn’t be in a position to give Little R away for the evening.

I am so glad that I fed Little R for as long as I did, and I can safely say that it is the greatest achievement of my life. I miss the baby that she used to be, but I am proud of the little girl that is becoming.

 

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37 thoughts on “The end of an era.

  1. I admire you for completing an entire year of breastfeeding. I lasted 6 months with my first. Had to quit with my second at only a couple months because I found out I was pregnant with my third and by the time my third arrived I lasted around 4 months and then the fact I had an infant, 1 year old, and 2 year old was just too much. Oh and add mastitis in there 3 times as well 😁. Breastfeeding is truly a great bonding experience though. Have fun with your night away with hubby! #KCACOLS

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    1. Haha mastitis is the worst thing about breastfeeding, definitely! I got it and I was literally in tears everytime Little R latched. Six months is still an amazing thing to do, you should be so proud so well done! It really is an amazing thing to do! Thank you so much, I cannot wait to be a husband and wife instead of a mum and dad!

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  2. Congratulations to you Mama for your breastfeeding achievement! I’m feeding my 8mth old at the moment and I know I’ll be much like you describe. It’s such an emotional experience and bond- when we have our last feed it’ll be tough but I never would’ve thought we would’ve got this far. I’m so proud 🙂 lovely post to read #marvmondays

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    1. That is incredible, well done you! Apparently only 19% of babies are breastfed until six months so you should be really proud of yourself! I love the fact that I did it, it really is such an achievement and I think it is one that only other breastfeeders will understand! Keep going, you are incredible!

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      1. I didn’t know the percentage was so low! Thank you very much! I completely get it when you say only other breastfeeding mums get it- it’s such a journey but I love every moment. Thanks for your lovely comment x

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  3. It’s always a bit bittersweet finishing breastfeeding. It’s the end of an era of that special time of nursing but also nice to have your boobs back and wear nice bras again! #marvmondays

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  4. Oh there are so many eras that we go through on raising our children and it is sad when one ends and another starts but I adore your positivity at the end about being proud of the little girl she is becoming – and so you should – so many exciting times and eras ahead #MarvMondays

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    1. Thank you so much, that is such an amazing comment to receive. I definitely need to sort myself out and stop being so emotional though, I do just miss it an awful lot. I think I would have breastfed until about ten if it has been up to me though, so it is probably a good thing that she has stopped!

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  5. I breastfed my first for a year and my second for only a few months. She was just never really as interested. Its funny the emotions and opinions breastfeeding stirs in us all though. I confess the main reason I did it was laziness as much as anything else, but I suppose looking back I am quite proud of it. Stopping it is a step forward in reclaiming a little of yourself back again though, which I think is a good thing! #kcacols

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  6. Ah I am feeding my 7 month old and I think I will feel the same as you when we stop. I would like to get to 1 if we can so he can go onto cows milk. You should feel so proud of yourself, and how lovely about how your daughter is becoming more independent – I totally understand the bittersweet feeling but there are lots of exciting things still to come. #fartglitter

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    1. Seven months is an incredible length of time to feed for though! You should also be proud, it is such an amazing thing to do! Well done you! You are right, I am just sad because she is growing up! Thank you for visiting!

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  7. I admire you for breastfeeding for a whole year – that is amazing! It didn’t go well for me so I can’t comment on that feeling, but I can imagine how the change must be so strange. My little girl is a similar age and I have noticed a sudden shift in her independence now that she can walk – the cuddles are so much less, unless she has fallen or is ill. I miss it! xx #marvmondays

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    1. I know, I miss it too! I am sorry it didn’t go as well for you but it isn’t the end of the world. I set out to solely breastfeed so I am impressed I managed to do it! Little R is poorly at the moment so she won’t let me put her down and it’s a little bit like having a newborn again – but so much heavier! It is heart breaking when they grow up but so exciting!xxx

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  8. It’s a strange emotion isn’t it. I enjoyed the bond I had with my two by breast feeding. I missed it when I stopped but was pleased to have the freedom of my own body back. I’m glad I was able to do it.

    mainy – myrealfairy

    #fortheloveofblog

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  9. I’ve just stopped after a year too! I’m sure I found it far harder than the little. High fives all round for an amazing achievement!

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  10. Well done on a year of breastfeeding, that is such a huge achievement! I am 5 days away from reaching that goal and am rather emotional about it. Alfie is less interested these days and I fear when I go back to work in 2 weeks, he’ll lose interest altogether. I have mixed feelings about it – I’ll be sad to stop but also feel like I might be glad our journey is coming to an end (but feel super guilty for admitting that). The one thing that I fear the most is not knowing his last feed is his last….I want to be able to cherish that moment #marvmondays

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    1. I set a date and decided to stop then. Really and truly, we were both ready and at least then I could prepare myself for her last feed. Good on you tough, it’s incredible that you have done so well and you should be so proud!

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  11. Aaah, what a beautiful post!! Even though you are heartbroken that this has come to an end, it sounds like you have just created the most incredible memories of your life, as well as your biggest achievement. The pride in your words is gorgeous, and I’m sure taking that away from the experience with you will hopefully soften the blow. A really, really lovely read!
    #bigpinklink

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  12. Well done for persevering despite your initial difficulties – I’m so glad you had a positive experience and whilst it will take some adjustment it’s the perfect excuse to treat yourself to some nice new tops and bra’s – after all you deserve them. 🙂 #marvmondays

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  13. This is such a lovely read, I really wish I’d of breastfed, but if i have any more i’ll be more open to it, it sounds like you have a lovely bond with your daughter. Thanks foe sharing such a lovely post! x

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  14. Take comfort in remembering all those special mummy and R moments that you did have. Better to have fed and stopped than to never have fed before (kinda! ) #kcacols

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  15. Well done for breast feeding for 1 year! I also just not long ago stopped breastfeeding my youngest daughter. She was about 20 months. It lasted longer than my first one but I guess each child is different. My journey also didn’t have the greatest start but then with a lot perseverance it become a beautiful journey that we both enjoyed. It was sad when it finished but at the same time I felt that I got my freedom again which was nice too. Thanks so much for sharing this at #KCACOLS. It is great to have you for the first time. I hope that you like it. It will be nice if you join us again, 🙂 x

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  16. As a breast feeding mum I had no idea the emotional roller-coaster I was stepping on to – REALLY difficult at the beginning, a joyful, bonding experience, the desire to have some independence again, the sadness when you can be independent again…such a mix! So its always good to hear other mums write about similar things, makes me realise its not just me being very confused about the whole thing!

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