My breastfeeding journey…
About 4 weeks ago I stopped breastfeeding baby Noah, it feels a lot longer I got my life back.
I though would be a lot harder than it actually was, as baby Noah wouldn’t take bottled milk and dummies. I was so scared how I would put him to sleep and will he sleep though the night without me pacifying him.
Well, guess he adapted just fine with his new routine and when he realized there was no more boob, he took the bottle.
I decided to stop not to have my life back but mainly because he was using my breast as his pacifier and would be hanging on me all day and all night. So after I got back from Brazil with him I waited for him to settle back home and was very sure what I wanted.
Few days before he turned 16 months I decided to stop, I have never had a nightnurse or my husband have never put him to sleep before and having no family around I decided to ask my helper to help me for 4 nights as she was the only person he was familiar with and wouldn’t freakout with his new routine.
For 4 nights she slept with him in his room and he was actually really fine, first 3 days he didn’t take a bottle and I spend the day with him but always say “no more boob boob” one of his first words was “boob boob” ha ha ha
He eats really well and the need for milk wasn’t as important for him as my sleep was for me.
Day 5 I did the whole bed routine alone and put him down, he cried for a bit but eventually took his bottle and slept.
The first 2 weeks he still would wake up though the night looking for “boob boob” crying madly wanting but I turned my back and ignored him. (he slept in my bed this times)
Since I have stopped he has been sleeping so much better without waking up so much but when he is tired or hungry he still puts his little hands inside my top looking for it.
Breastfeeding was the most incredible journey with baby Noah, and I really followed my heart and didn’t care what people had to say. Lots of people would say “its time to stop” or “you should breastfeed until 2 years old”. I’m not one of those moms that wanted my baby to only have breast milk until 2 years old and organic food for life. I believed that my intuition would guide me to what was right for him.
Noah was born with pneumonia and spend the first week of his life in ICU, I felt insecure and the only thing I could help while he was there was bringing “The golden milk” I expressed everyday he was in ICU every 3 hrs so he could have my milk and recover quickly, he was too weak to suck and the doctors were very strict and most important was his health.
The day he left hospital he started sucking and was “0” problem the fact he was having bottles in hospital. He was still tired so he wouldn’t feed for long and my boobs were exploding with milk. I had to slowly adapt my milk supply to his needs. We tried dummies few times but he was not interested.
My precious little man was so vulnerable and all I wanted was to protect him, Vincent was only 19 months old when Noah was born so he was getting sick often and I though breastfeeding would protect Noah from all the winter bugs Vincent was bringing home. Also my husband was working so much and I had ‘0” help after 5pm and weekends. Bottles would be one more task for me and I only tried to give him a bottle when he was almost 3 months with didn’t work :/
Noah got really sick again when he was 8 weeks old, which resulted in 7 days in hospital. 5 ½ months we were 3 days in hospital and again 11 ½ months.
His first year of life was really scary and I became very paranoid/upset how much some parents are inconsiderate about keeping sick kids at home.
Breastfeeding was the only thing I felt that I could help my baby, with all the amount of medication he was taking he needed my milk and I know it helped him getting though all the pain.
When he was 10 months I left him for 3 nights and went to my best friend wedding in Namibia, when I got back home the first thing he need was look for the boob. I wasn’t ready to stop yet so I was expressing while a was there and my breast pump stopped working while I was there. Was not great but it all worked out on the end.
It was the most beautiful bonding between Noah and I, and I wish to keep all those memories forever.
I look forward to tell him one day that he wanted to be breastfed until 5 years old ehehehehe
I will always encourage mothers to breastfeed your child until the date it feels its right for you.
All my love
Juliana Vasconcelos xxxx
Picture taken by Devin Lester