So I’m feeling totally enthused about this night-weaning idea … 90 per cent of the time.
I keep hearing stories about how quickly it can happen (one of them I published here).
Three nights seems to be everyone’s magic number. Three goddamn nights! Would it matter how unholy bad they were, if it meant that after I was through them I’d be sleeping through the night?
I can’t even imagine how good an unbroken night would feel …
Getting Mr A totally on board is going to be key; another thing I keep hearing is how much easier it is for the father unit to settle a little boob-junkie once it has become clear that the dealer ain’t dealin’. Which makes sense. As my wise mother said: ‘You just won’t be able to comfort her through her sense of loss by hugging her close to the focus of her longings’ (How wise is my mother?? What a perfectly succinct point. I’m picturing ‘helping’ a smoker through cold turkey by commiserating with them while breathing smoke in their face?)
But then there’s that other 10 per cent of me …
Speaking of my mum: she also mentioned that she got teary eyed just thinking about unlatching her (extended breastfed, all three) babies … over twenty years ago. And this is my wise woman mother I’m talking about here. She is not one to get dramatic about things or overly emotional by any means.
I completely understand it.
I can’t say this without cliche (this must be one of the most discussed things on the internet), but breastfeeding is … really, really special.
It’s my time with my daughter: when I express my love for her in the most tangible, perfectly symbolic way, and she receives every sort of nourishment I am able to give: together we are close, we are warmed by each other, we are comforted, we reinforce our identities in the context of each other … we just are. It’s perfect give and take, perfect symbiosis, the creation of a perfect circle. It’s like no other thing I’ve ever done. Or ever will do.
This quote from Paula Yount I once read on Kelly Mom has long remained in my mind:
You are not a pacifier; you are a Mom. You are the sun, the moon, the earth, you are liquid love, you are warmth, you are security, you are comfort in the very deepest aspect of the meaning of comfort …
Yes. But at 2 am??? I tend to be expressing these sentiments through gritted teeth, trying to convince myself …
I know night-weaning doesn’t need to mean weaning altogether … but Miss Bee only has her mook once or at most twice a day now … so this would represent a huge reduction in feeding episodes altogether. Would that mean she’s likely to want more during the day (as Stef found?) or less? (The purpose of night-weaning is to accustom her to the idea that she has the tools to comfort herself back to equilibrium. If she learns that too thoroughly, how much longer will she be wanting to breastfeed during the day?)
Can I do this?
Do I want to??