Friday, 1 June 2012

No more bitey bitey*



She’s started biting, this little lady. My nipples, that is. And it hurts. Quite a lot.

Only recently I was sure that I would continue feeding Lila for quite some time, but now I’m not convinced.

There’s the biting, which isn’t much fun, but there are other signs too that
she may be ready to finish our feeding time together. After refusing the bottle for months, in the past week she’s taken to guzzling down a full formula feed in one hit. I wonder if my milk just isn’t enough any more.

She’s also not at all fussed on a midday boob-feed, but will happily drink a full bottle. I think this has something to do with not wanting to miss any part of the action, now that she’s so much more aware of what the action really is.

I was hoping to feed for a year this time. I’m not sure why. I fed Oliver until he was nine months, so perhaps it was a personal challenge. I'm also not working now, so why stop? But maybe the reality is that the nine-month mark is just how we roll. It’s good enough for me.

Part of me feels sad that it’s coming to an end. The breastfeeding-bond is beautiful. But the other part is looking forward to getting back to full health. I feel pretty drained. My chest is bony. My hair is still falling out and the re-growth isn’t pretty.

We won’t force things. We’ll keep going and let things happen naturally and slowly.  

And what will be will be.

But tell me… have you ever had to deal with a biter? 

*This line was pinched directly from the pages of the wonderful 'Doodle Bites' by Polly Dunbar. Such a great series of children's books. We love them.

7 comments:

  1. ouch! you're such a good mum for seeing all the signs and even though it's so hard, accepting that she may not need you so much anymore *tear*... remember how much stress your body has been under since your decision to move back home, its a huge, HUGE deal and your body has probably taken a battering, including your milk. I know it's so hard to know it's coming to an end, but look how well you've done - look at her beautiful chub!!! I was so lucky that none of mine were biters, once they had teeth I was very conscious of feeding time being business, no hanging around letting them play or soothe like when they were really little, letting them take their time... otherwise I think they would have nipped me! xx

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  2. Yes. I breastfed (not a biter) my son till he was a year and he weened himself off. My daughter ( the biter) was breastfed till she was about 15 months and I had to ween her off. I usually stuck my finger in her mouth while she was biting and that usually worked. But it is hard. Nipple cream was my best friend for awhile. I know the symptoms all too well. No one prepares you for this kinda thing. I suffered a lot with my daughter but stuck with it. This has always been a personal choice of mine ... its a huge thing but never feel guilty if you feel you need to stop. She will be fine.

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  3. Yes! No1 Boy bit so hard that when I expressed milk the next day at work, there was blood in it... yuk! He always took a bottle which was great as I had to go back when he was 5 months old. I still managed to feed him until a year just morning and night, which was lovely. My health visitor recommended either using you finger as Alma suggests, or saying "No" firmly and removing them for a moment.
    I ended up spending a total of 5 and 1/2 years breastfeeding and was so glad to get back to wearing pretty bras and clothes that didn't have to be easily accessible. It is a wonderful way to bond, but I totally understand your need to get 'you' back!

    Hope you're enjoying all the Jubilee celebrations, what a time to be on the other side of the world!

    Have a great weekend,
    Sandra x

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  4. I think you have done amazingly well to breastfeed for so long and especially with biting! I didn't last as long as that but I did miss it when I stopped. I remember one of my best friends saying that her little boy breastfed for much longer than her little girl - maybe girls are ready to stop earlier? Who knows! Hope you are enjoying the jubilee weekend - despite the rubbish weather!! How mean after all that lovely sunshine last weekend!xx

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  6. Oh dear Anna, ouch, that just sounds so so painful. Thankfully I never had to contend with biting, as both boys weened themselves at six months. At the time, I was sad to be stopping, as I also would have like to go for a year with each, but that's just the way some babies are... and my boys have ALWAYS needed lots of sustenance, haha, so I probably wasn't quite enough.
    Good luck with the weening process, although it sounds like your adorable little lady might just be an easy one to ween xo

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  7. Lily will be 1 on the 16th and she just got her 2nd tooth....biting has become an issue for us recently as well :( teething late was a blessing but I must say my bewbies aren't fans of her new additions.

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