So, our journey has finally come to an end. Last night, was the last night that I will have breastfed Aurora. We had been slowly weaning since December. She handled all the other transitions pretty well. The morning one, which we removed at the beginning of the year, she handled much better than I thought she would. She had a few fussy days, but overall, did really well. But, this one, the right before bed one, I worry.
She LOVES her right before bed feeding. Last night she was crying and trying to pull me to the rocking chair to start it right away, rather than to read a book first. We did finish the book, and then for one last time, we had our night time feeding. Now, these feedings have been getting shorter and shorter where they were lasting less than 5 minutes. But, I think she knew something was up, because she stayed on much longer this time. And then when she did finally finish, she just laid her head there and looked at me.
I had done really well at not getting emotional, up until that point. When I rocked her as she sucked on her pacifier and I tried to get her to sleep. The tears just ran down my face. I thought back to all the times I had fed her, many right in that chair rocking her, and just was sad and happy at the journey we had taken.
It was a long journey. Longer that I ever thought it would be. I was very nervous about breastfeeding and I did not know if I could do it. But, I tied and I kept at it, and with some help, we got into a really nice rhythm and I really enjoyed being able to feed and nourish her. I enjoyed those cuddles before bed. And while I enjoy my sleep now, I do sometimes miss those middle of the night quiet feeding sessions (not the middle of the night crying won’t go to sleep sessions!). I made it through a year of pumping at work and dealing with the panic of not having enough milk, of then feeding past on year and getting all the comments about why aren't we done, and now here we are 16 and a half months later finally finishing this special journey.
I think she knew at some level that something was up, because she woke up many times in the night screaming, MOMMY, over and over again. It breaks my heart because I know that is how she felt a special connection to me and how I could easily comfort her. Now, my hugs and kisses will have to be enough. I know the next few nights will be rough, but we will get through, and just lead her into the next stage of her being the big girl that she is becoming.