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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Head tilt

He looks at me and tilts his head to his right. Aaangh! he says lowering his ear down to touch his shoulder. In case I wasn't listening he raises his head and then tilts it again. Do you want to nurse? I ask him from where I am sitting on the couch. Ye-ah! he yells.

Somehow tilting his head has become the boy's way of indicating that he wants to breastfeed. Most likely it is an evolution from when he would crawl into my lap and then flop sideways in my arms to get into the optimum position. The sideways motion has remained, but now it is his head tilting sideways that lets me know what he wants. I could probably teach him a sign, or even a word, for breastfeeding but I have never got around to it. I never thought I'd need to.

I told myself I would breastfeed the boy until he was the same age as the girl when I weaned her. When the girl was a year old I headed back to work. Shortly after that I found myself feeling tired and irritated when it came time to breastfeed, so I decided to stop offering unless she asked. She didn't ask and that was that. She was weaned at thirteen months.

The boy is now eighteen months old. I am still home with him and I wonder if that makes a difference. Breastfeeding is an easy and comforting thing he likes to do before his nap and bedtime so we do it. He asks and I don't say no. Sometimes he asks at other time during the day. I usually say yes if we are at home.

I think about weaning him. Then I think about how much he will hate that and how much I will hate fighting him about it. I told myself I would do it when we moved him to a toddler bed. I tell myself that I will do it when his last two teeth come in. I tell myself many things.

Until then he keeps looking at me and tilting his head.

16 comments:

  1. If he wants it and you don't mind doing it then I don't think you need to give yourself a deadline... K self weaned at 11 months but I always thought I'd go a lot longer.
    I feel like people EXPECT us to wean our babies at a year. I think we should all get to just go until we're ready to stop.

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  2. Awww, that's awesome. L was about 20 months when she weaned, and it seemed just right for both of us - she was busier and not interested and finally started drinking from a cup. It all just seemed . . . "right". No sadness or fighting or forcing. Everyone was just happy and I think that's how it should be. If he's not ready, keep doin' what you're doin'!

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  3. Ha. My daughter is only six months and tells me by sticking her fist in her mouth. And then screaming when I don't respond quickly enough! :D But I love it.

    I found your blog by following the Mabel's labels entrants list and really just wanted to say that I'm glad I did. I will be coming back for sure.

    I agree that you should go until you are or he is ready to stop - as you said in your post about the doctor's visit, you have to trust yourself.

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  4. Sometimes it's okay to take the path of least resistance. My daughter nursed until she was 2 and a half. She lost interest right after her last teeth came in and that was that. I'm glad we never had to "decide" to wean.

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  5. Too cute. I think it depends on the kid. My daughter weaned at 14 months and I think it was the right time for both of us. My son nursed till he was two. He was such a devoted breastfeeder I thought weaning him would devastate him. Hah--he gave it up with no fuss at all. I think I was more upset than he was. There's no rush, though...you'll know when the two of you are ready.

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  6. The head tilt? Ya, my little guy doesn't something just like that, only for him it's a tilt and lean when I'm holding him. I know it very well :-) I'm back to work now and we are still nursing, I think he would wean if I encouraged it, but I'm not ready. We're down to two a day. Sometimes he actively nurses other times it's just a few minutes for comfort.

    I say do what feels right, that way you can't go wrong.

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  7. I see nothing wrong with keeping with it :) Especially since it makes you both feel content and happy!

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  8. I finally stopped with Apple because I needed my boobs back. If I let her she would probably still be nursing today, but it was best for both of us that I refuse. It was tough, I will be the first to admit that.

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  9. You will know when it is the right time. I knew and stopped. My mom knew when I helped myself in public, by walking up at a bridal shower lifting her shirt and getting to it.

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  10. I breastfed my daughter until she was 34 months, and I'm currently (even as I type) breastfeeding my 19-month-old, so I say as long as it's working for you, that's all that matters. Plus, like every other step we take with our kids, giving up breastfeeding is really bittersweet. It can be hard to let go of it.

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  11. Ah, yes, I know this feeling well. I had no expectations for when I would stop breastfeeding but did not foresee that I would be feeding a two year old. We are however, progressing (with caution), dropped the bedtime feed at 22 months and we are now only nursing before naptime. I see the end of the tunnel...watch this space.

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  12. Good job mama. My son self-weaned at 11 months and my daughter at the same age is showing the signs as well. As much as I complain about breastfeeding my carnivorous breastfeeders, I am already missing it.

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  13. Awww, I was only thinking today how sad I am that feeding has come to an end. If nothing else it's a lovely excuse to have a sit down and a cuddle. My son was 26 months when we stopped. x

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  14. I noticed my daughter pumping her fists occasionally when she was nursing, so that has become the sign for it. I think it's adorable the way he communicates with you.

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  15. I'm kinda in the same boat. Margo weaned herself and it just happened so naturally. Maude was nursing once a day and now seems to be on the increase. I can't imagine fighting her over it. . but some days I think I'm ready. I just seriously didn't have to think of it the first time 'round . . so I feel I have no experience.

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  16. Oh, the head tilt. How CUTE. Kind of makes me wish I breastfed. Alas, it's something I spectacularly and overwhelmingly failed at.

    xo

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