Over the weekend, your Grandma asked if you're still nursing. It must have occurred to her that she hasn't actually seen you nurse in a while. Thanks to her curiosity, it occurred to me that our nursing relationship has really been evolving over the last couple of months. I can't recall the last time you nursed anywhere other than in bed or on our couch at home. You are simply too busy when we're out in the world to bother with mama's milk! This past weekend, for the first time ever, you declined when I offered to nurse you. We were in the van warming up between your uncle's baseball games, and I asked several times if you'd like some milk. You were not interested and carried on climbing all over the van, a new adventure since you're normally secured in your carseat in there!
The other day while we were out walking, I had a delightful conversation with a little boy who was outside playing. He asked me how old you were, and informed me that he has a one month old baby sister. He declared you the second cutest baby he's ever seen, his sister coming in first place, naturally. He went on to inform me that "mommies have to make their own milk just to feed their babies!". I smiled and said "That's right!" and then he asked if I still make milk to feed my baby. I smiled as I answered affirmatively, but I couldn't help but wonder how long it will be before the answer is "No, not anymore."
A little over a month ago, I added the 18 Month Breastfeeding Milestone Ribbon to the sidebar on the left. My goal has been, and continues to be, to continue nursing you until you're at least two, and to allow you to self-wean when you are ready. Looking back, it has been quite an adventure. There were the early days when I was overcome with worry that my milk wasn't coming in fast enough, thanks to your surgical birth. The frantic calls made to the lactation consultant, afraid that I was doing it wrong, or that you were doing it wrong. Then the shift into confidence that we were succeeding, and becoming more comfortable nursing in the presence of others.
Here we are today, now over 19 months of breastfeeding behind us. Perhaps you sensed my emotions, as this morning, you reassured me that mama's milk is still the best thing ever. You snuggled and nursed for nearly two hours, both of us drifting in and out of sleep before leaving the comfort of the bed to have breakfast and start our day. It is bittersweet to realize that we are likely well over half-way through our breastfeeding relationship, and to wonder, how many more ribbons will we earn?