The only thing I'm very un-hippie about is vaccinations. Sofia has had all her vaccinations and she will have everything that is recommended by her doctors. My mom is a public health nurse and I talk with her about these things, but in the end, my kid gets her vaccinations. I know there are TONS of people out there who are militantly anti-vaccination, but for me, I'm going to go ahead and NOT take my medical advice from a Playboy bunny who did dating shows on MTV.
No offense to any Playboy bunny who went on to become a doctor. I'm not talking about you, Dr. Miss January.
But that's not what I'm talking about. No, I'm talking about the other major hippie mainstay: Breastfeeding.
Thank God in Heaven that I've able to breastfeed. I'm fully aware that not every woman is able to, and I count my blessings all the time. From day one, I was committed to it and I was determined to make it work. The health benefits, the bonding, the immunity - all of those things were major reasons for me, but real talk, the A-Number 1 reason why I stayed with it was the FOOD. My hatred of cooking is legendary and to have an out like that? Straight up, that's the main reason why Sofia was almost 8 months old before she had her first solid food on a regular basis. To this day, that's why we haven't stopped; I can get a couple extra hours in the morning if I bring her to bed with me to nurse and I breathe easy knowing that she's still getting her nutrients from my breastmilk. She's a picky eater and I don't worry as much when she doesn't get the exact recommended amount of fruits or veggies, because I eat super healthy and I know she's getting it through nursing.
Now before I had kids, I knew I wanted to breastfeed but I also said I'd stop when they had teeth, bit me, or could ask for it. Sofia has done all three and we're still going and there's no stopping in sight. And that's kind of my issue.
After I had her, I was super committed to letting her self wean. I saw no reason to force such a drastic behavior change on her before she was ready.
Get your flaming torches ready, hippies.
I've changed my mind.
You guys, I'm effing tired. The only time I got more than two full nights sleep in nearly two years was when we went to Kauai for ten days. It was the best ten days of my life and those blissful nights of sleep are nothing more than a distant memory. And I'm effing tired.
So I want to night wean. I'm fine with nursing during the day but good LORD, the kid goes to bed at 8, wakes up at 11, doesn't go back to sleep until close to one, wakes up again at four, which is when she comes into bed with us because I'm too effing tired. Because she's in bed with us, she's up at 5:15 because that's when Drew gets up, and if the angels are smiling on me, she'll go back to sleep when he leaves at 6:30 until nine or so. Otherwise, between 6:30 and 7, she's up for the day. Every night.
There has only been one time that someone else has put her to bed without incident. When she was about nine or ten months old we went to a birthday party and the babysitter was able to put her to bed by herself. I thought she had the magic touch, but the next time she sat for us, Sofia cried for two hours before going to sleep. And that wasn't crying it out, because I don't do that. The babysitter literally carried her around for two hours while she screamed.
I'm super familiar with that move because that's what happened last night. The night nursing is wearing on me and last night was one of those nights. Who knows why she wouldn't sleep. Maybe she was teething, maybe she was going through a growth spurt. Maybe she wanted to watch tv. All I know is she just wasn't going to sleep and nursing was killing me. I was feeling really touched out and my nipples felt like hamburger meat (tmi, sorry); she just couldn't be satisfied. I was so tired I was getting frustrated and losing my patience. That's when I knew Drew had to step in.
Sofia never really took a bottle and it never bothered me because I was all, breast is best blah blah blah but I didn't think it through. 'Breast is best' means that the person with the breasts will put the baby to bed until said baby is done with said breasts. No nights off EVER, unless you're cool with hysterical screaming. EVER. Therefore, Drew has only put her to bed a small handful of times and Sofia is not a fan because it's not what she's used to.
But DAMN. I'm effing tired. I need an effing break! And last night was one of those nights. I just couldn't take it anymore and I put her in her crib, walked out and got into our bed. "I can't do it. I can't. She's going to have to cry because I can't. If you want to go in there you can, but I for real can't."
I woke him up out of a dead sleep, and naturally he wasn't pleasant about it. He may have said something about me not needing to have an attitude about it, but I don't remember because smoke and fire and sleep deprivation and frustration and profanities spilled out of my mouth and my head started spinning.
I was going to put up the Exorcist picture
but it scared me too much.
My husband is a frickin saint for putting up with my crazy.
Bless his heart, he tried for over an hour to get her back to bed, all while she was screaming her face off, going Mommymommymommymommy. She was PISSED and at one point Drew brought her in to bed with me and she was clawing at my shirt, trying to get at my boobs. Normally, I would have just given in and let her nurse, but my hand to heaven you guys, I couldn't. I just couldn't nurse her in that moment and trust me, the guilt would have eaten me alive if the sleep deprivation hadn't already shut my body down. I had to sleep.
He finally got her to bed after an hour or so, we nursed this morning and she doesn't appear to be any worse for wear.
I've looked into gentle night weaning but I'm here to tell you: there's NOTHING gentle about weaning of any kind. I'm taking away something that my kid wants and she's at the age where she will let everyone within earshot know just how PISSED she is about that.
I've tried explaining to her that nursing has to go night-night too and she laughs in my face and undoes my bra. I've tried telling her that she's a big girl, that she doesn't need nursing in the middle of the night and she just screams louder. One time, she was trying to lift my shirt and get at my boobs and I was trying to block her. She looked me dead in my face and said "Stop that." I've tried explaining to her that I need to sleep so I can be a better mommy to her and she pretty much says Sounds like a personal problem. I've tried sippie cups with water, giving her a lovey, giving cuddles, and none of it works. She gets up in the middle of the night and wants to nurse until she falls back to sleep and if I even THINK about trying to put her back in her crib before she is completely and totally asleep, well, Sucks for you Mom! I'm going to scream for two hours now! Hope you're not tired!
I seriously don't know what to do. It's messing with my mental health. I need to night wean and it's for me, not her. But the screaming - holy balls, the screaming. I don't know if I can handle more nights of that, but I know I can't handle more night waking and taking an hour or more to get back to sleep in the middle of the night.
I've read stuff that says suck it up, the time will go by and you'll be sad when it's over. I totally get that and I hate that my frustration is preventing me from enjoying our nursing relationship. But I'm So Effing TIRED.
Right about now I'm jealous of all the moms who had kids who self-weaned or who were actually able to gently wean. Because the way it's looking, I'm going to be nursing Sofia in the car right before I drop her off for kindergarten.
As I sit here typing this, with her happily nursing.
I need a nap.