A Good Thing Goin’

May 9th, 2011 by Dionna | 12 Comments
Posted in Breastfeeding/Lactivism, Carnival and Special Series, Compassionate Advocacy, Feed with Love and Respect, Guest Posts, Joys of Breastfeeding Past Infancy, Just for Fun/Miscellaneous, natural parenting

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Today I am happy to host a guest post by Sara. Sara is the “me” of bonzo, chooch and me. chooch is her husband, bonzo’s their baby. Sara writes about parenting, cooking, living, learning – and life with with bonzo and chooch! Here is her breastfeeding guest post, number 34 in our “Joys of Breastfeeding Past Infancy” series:

bonzo’s a toddler alright. there is no denying it.
but, to me, he’s just my baby who i met for the first time 19 months ago.
sure, he’s a little – make that a lot – bigger, he walks and talks, and has changed in almost every imaginable way.

except one: he still needs and wants to breastfeed. often.

i’ve changed and grown in so many ways, too. it’s been quite the journey.
but in the midst of all that change and growth, me and bonzo have an unspoken understanding and a trust in each other and ourselves.
i trusted my body to give him exactly what he needed to grow throughout my pregnancy and to do what it was made to do to bring him into this world on his birth day.
and i trusted my body would continue to provide perfect nourishment for him after he was born – and it did all of those things miraculously and i am so grateful for that.
i also trusted that bonzo would know instinctively what to do with that nourishment, and he did. he knew exactly when and how to latch on and knew exactly what to do once he had – and neither one of us ever looked back.

he’s always known just how to ask for what he needs, when he needs it.
it went from rooting, fussing and crying… to squeezing his little mitts, signing as he nursed… then squeezing his mitts to tell me he wanted to nurse… to saying “meemees” while he signed… to saying “meekees” and “ah-meeks” (for “other milkies”) and today, at 19 months and change, with his ever expanding language and affinity for the word “it”, he says, “nurse it!” when he’s ready to get down to business.

i never really think about when i’ll stop breastfeeding – and i have been asked numerous times. it’s always seemed to me, though, that bonzo would arrive to the end just as naturally as he arrived at the beginning.

true, he’s only one half of the story… like any relationship, it takes two to make it and two to break it.
i’m his other half, and he’s mine – we’ve been at this together the whole time and i can honestly say that i am happy to follow his lead. in fact, nothing makes me happier.

i have absolutely loved the evolution of our story.
nursing eight pounds of warm, smooshy newborn baby is a completely different experience than nursing a busy, squirming toddler and they’re both awesome.
these days it’s a little bit of everything…
sometimes me and bonz joke around while he nurses, his eyes squinting with delight, devilishly smirking and chuckling, all the while careful not to let go… same reason he likes being asked questions while we chat as he nurses – he loves to answer with a “mmmm-hmmm!” without letting go.

sometimes we tell secrets and share the sweetest kisses…
sometimes he hums a tune while he nurses…
sometimes we snuggle in so close and cozy that we fit like puzzle pieces and sometimes he flops around from side to side and lassos his little legs around my neck like an acrobat – all while latched on…
and when he’s sleepy he methodically rubs my earlobes between his fingers and thumb.

naps begin and end nursing – i love to watch his bright blue eyes get dozy and his eyelids get heavier and heavier until he finally closes them and falls asleep in my arms….
and, when he stirs, he likes to be scooped up to nurse his way awake – or sometimes back to sleep.
at night we have co-sleepy, cuddly, milkies laying next to each other, drifting in and out of sleep together.

i have always loved to hold him close while he sleeps in my arms after nursing. the look of absolute peace and contentment on his face makes my heart ache from the tidal wave of love that comes over me – there is no place in the world he’d rather be than in my arms at that moment.

and i’m thankful every single day that i get to experience this.
it’s precious time. fleeting time.
and i’m soakin’ it in every chance i get.
we’ve got a good thing going, me and the bonz.

Breastfeeding past infancy is full of laughter, joys, and heartbreaking tenderness. I am publishing a series of posts dedicated to the beauty of nursing toddlers in an effort to normalize this healthy and beneficial nursing relationship. But this isn’t just about me – I want to hear YOUR joys. If you are nursing a child who is older than one year, please contact me and tell me about your favorite moments. I will include them in the series and credit you, your site, or post it anonymously if you so desire. (This series was formerly called “The Joys of Breastfeeding a Toddler.” I changed the name to reflect the fact that we are celebrating women who breastfeed past infancy, regardless of the age of the nursling.)

12 Responses to:
"A Good Thing Goin’"

  1. MomAgain@40   karentoittoit

    I love the fact that you call it an evolving relationship! Beautiful post!

  2. Cassy

    I nursed both my boys, now 8 and 10, up through the age of 4…and yes, I tandem nursed for more than two years. I was not rigid or militant or in any way deterministic about any of this. I simply trusted the process to unfold as it should, and it did…and it was beautiful. Both boys have happy memories of that time, as do I, and without question, I know that it was and has been and will continue to be an important part of the close, trusting relationship I share w/ each of them.

    Thank you for posting this.

    • Dionna   CodeNameMama

      Cassy I would love to get a “joys of breastfeeding past infancy” post from you that included your sons’ memories – I’ve always wondered what little ones remember of their nursing days! Let me know if you are interested!

  3. Vicky

    Thanks for this. I too am still feeding my 19 month old son and I have to say I’ve been struggling with it the last couple of weeks. I always said I’d let him self-wean but I’d started wondering if he ever would (and of course other people make those comments all the time too!!). Recently he’s gone from feeding 2-3 times a day to more like 6-7. He’s gone from just feeding off one boob to wanting both sides each time. He’s gone from 5 to 30 min feeds. He’s rough and squirmy and very forceful about how he wants me to hold him and it was starting to feel rather one-sided. But you’re right, it won’t last forever and there is so much I do love about it! I am going to stop moaning and just cherish feeding my squirmy, demanding little monkey :-)

    • Dionna   CodeNameMama

      Vicky – good for you :) At those times when my little one reverted to more infant-like nursing tendencies, I tried to keep in mind that they still up nursing during growth spurts, teething, developmental milestones, etc. Remember that “this too shall pass.” Good luck!

  4. Jenn

    This is absolutely BEAUTIFUL! My LO is only 6 months but we are looking forward to at least 2 years of breastfeeding, largely inpart to this series “Joys of Breastfeeding Past Infancy”. The moments you shared are so precious, and while relating to some, I look forward to the many more to come. Thank you for the series Dionna, I found it about a year ago, and this being my first child and having no other exposure to breastfeeding, I’m certain these wonderful stories are how regular-term breastfeeding has been normalized to me. You and Lauren have got me NIP EVERYWHERE! :) Z and I thank you ladies!

  5. Amber Morrisey   birthroutes

    Sniff. This is so beautiful. <3

    Thank you so much for sharing, and I am now following Sara's blog.

  6. Vidya Sury   vidyasury

    This whole post sounded like a beautiful, melodious song to me. My son’s 13, now, but it took me right back to those early days. Mmmm. It is like a mental holiday to travel back to those particular times. I nursed him until he was two and a half years old and we enrolled him in playschool. Even then, he’d want to cuddle close and lay his head on my breast regardless of whether he wanted to nurse or not. And we really enjoyed all those cozy times, with our own little games and code language. Today we share a wonderful relationship of 100% trust and love.

    Thank you, Sara, for such a lyrical description. Happy Mother’s Day to all you wonderful women here. Am blessed to interact with you.

  7. Cady

    My son is 17 months and this put perfectly into words what I think about our nursing relationship and how it has changed over time.

    I especially love your description of how nursing a toddler is different depending on mood. It can be serious, conversational, loving, silly, etc.

  8. BirthingService   birthingservice

    Breastfeeding is such an amazing journey, I am so that glad that you have made it 19 whole months! I love how you see him growing and changing, from how he first asked to nurse to Nurse it! and all the while the safest and most perfect place for him to be is in your arms!

    Good job and keep on nursing!

  9. just a quick (and belated) thanks to dionna for posting our story and to everyone for the sweet and supportive comments!

    xoxo sara

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