Sunday, April 11, 2010

To Be or Not to Be, That is The Question.

At 21 months old, Finn is on another nursing strike. He's got a cold and is cutting some new teeth, so I have no doubt that's what's behind his refusal to nurse for the last few days.

Sigh. It's probably time to throw in the towel and say goodbye to that chapter, but I'm having such a hard time with it. The fact that he has Down syndrome and because of the associated developmental delays, he's still not yet drinking from a cup is one reason. Although, in all honesty, I haven't really pushed cup-drinking with him because he's been nursing. The bigger reason I'm struggling with this, I think, is that he's my very last baby. And that makes me sad. I'll never nurse another baby again after him. I know the end of it has to come sooner or later, and no matter when it is, it's going to take some adjusting to, and a little bit of mourning probably.

When he went on a nursing strike six months ago (which lasted for a month!), I kept my milk supply up by pumping, and I persevered in trying to get him back on the breast, and eventually we got back on track. I could probably use the same strategy this time, but I realize that I'd probably be doing it more for me than for him.

Here's how I have it broken down in my head:

Reasons to Keep Nursing:
  • I really, really love nursing my babies. It's been a loving, joyful experience with each of them.
  • Finn is not yet drinking from a cup, so nursing is a way to ensure his fluid intake and guarantee superior nutritional content.
  • I'm scared to see what's going to be left of my boobs after 8 1/2 years of continuous pregnancy and/or nursing!
The Possible Upside of Stopping:
  • It might actually be nice to have my body back to myself after 8 1/2 years.
  • It would make it easier for Michael and I to go away, sans kids, like we've talked about since he finished cancer treatment.
  • Stopping nursing might actually trigger my body to let go of these last few pounds of baby weight.
Sigh. I'm not at all settled on what to do, although I am leaning towards stopping (I think). I think part of it, too, is that he still seems like such a baby to me. But I know I have to let him grow up sometime.


heather said...

Could he have an ear infection? I know he has tubes but can they still get infected? I should know the answer to that since Morgan had them too, but I don't remember now. It was so hard on me to stop nursing my last little one. It makes it all seem so final. No more babies.

Leigh Anne said...

i admire you for going this long,'s something i hope to be able to do w/ our next babies (if we ever get pregnant again, lol. oy.)...big hugs to you whatever you decide! and hope finny boy feels better soon!

Esther and Brian said...

Lisa, when you say "cup" do you mean sippy cups of any sort or a real cup? We can't do real cups yet, either..just sippies. I think that you've tried them, if I am not mistaken, right? The straw ones? Good luck in your decision!

Brandie said...

I'm chiming in a little late here. I think I'll be a wreck when I wean my last baby (Hank). Right now, I'd like to wean Goldie, but we still rely on nursing to be sure she is getting enough fluids.