Yes. I am nursing for me.

When I was a new mom, everyone was so happy to see me nursing. I was congratulated, told I was making the right choice. People often inquired how it was going, if they could help, offering advice on the best nipple creams and how to nurse while laying in bed.
Then we hit 6 months and Bug began to eat real food. People started asking when I was going to wean him and if I was going to begin pumping to give him a bottle.
Then we hit a year and I began to get the looks, glances, and exasperated sighs whenever my son came over and vocalized he wanted to nurse. If he could ask, if he could walk, if he had all those teeth, why in the world was I continuing to nurse him on demand?
By the time we got to 18 months the jokes about how he would nurse until he’s 10 and the proclaimed worry from “caring” others came forth at the mention of tandem nursing both the newborn and Bug come March.
And here I am, still nursing him as he wants, at 21 months. I’ve gotten used to the numerous comments and questions.

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When am I going to stop?

When he’s done.

You should really wean before the new baby comes. Because tandem nursing isn’t a totally real thing that many people have done.

And one of my absolute favorites-“At this point, you’re nursing more for you than for him.”

To which, I ask, so what if I am?

The health benefits of nursing a toddler aside, I challenge you, what if I am nursing for myself now?
What if I truly enjoy nursing my son after 6 weeks of tears, pain, and actual blood? What if I love the bond nursing has given me with my toddler son? What if nursing my 21 month old makes parenting easier on me.

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Parenting is a hard road. When Bug is tired, nursing him to sleep is a soundproof way to settle him down enough to lull him to sleep. When he has been hurt, he often finds comfort in me breast feeding him. When he is teething, breast milk is a natural pain reliever that helps soothe the teeth poking through. When he wakes up in the middle of the night, I can snuggle him right in, offer him a drink, and he’s back to sleep in less than 20 minutes.

I can announce all the scientific reasons nursing past a year, past two years, into early childhood is healthy. I can cite a few different articles that highlight why America is one of the only places in the world that nursing a child becomes sexualized and anything more than providing your loved one with nourishment. But what if I don’t want to?

I’m nursing for him.
I’m nursing for health. I’m nursing for his bones and immune system. I’m nursing for the decreased risk in health problems in both him and myself as we grow older.
And I’m nursing for comfort. For a bond. And because it makes parenting and mommying easier most days.

I’m also still nursing for me.

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12 thoughts on “Yes. I am nursing for me.

  1. Kelly says:

    This was an excellent read! Unfortunately for my youngest I only nursed a year and a couple weeks. I really wanted to nurse much longer but nothing was coming out. The bonding is amazing and it IS the healthier choice and helps kids in so many ways. My son has only been once in 3years and he had a 24hr bug. Breast milk has been the best choice i made for all 3 of my beautiful babies! 😀

    • ljmarceau@gmail.com says:

      It’s such a wonderful thing! My older daughter was breastfed and even at 12, she’s almost never sick!

  2. I’m two weeks in to nursing my newborn and I have to say, I’m just starting to enjoy it! I hated nursing my first baby and only made it three months because of it. But this time around, it’s much more enjoyable. You do what works for you and your family! Nevermind everyone’s dumb opinion on how you decide to feed your children 🙂

    • ljmarceau@gmail.com says:

      I was so close to stopping with Bug. It was so hard, but it came down to just being a better choice for us all so I forced myself through.

  3. I think this post is beautiful. You are doing what’s right for you, and your little one doesn’t seem to mind one bit. You two will have such a sweet bond throughout life, and these moments will be a lovely memory to reflect on.

  4. I think it’s so important that you are making a decision to do what works for you and your son! Parenting is a different journey for every family and it’s difficult enough without the judgement and opinions of everyone else – I also know how awesome it is to have a “tool” that comforts a child! Go, momma!

  5. You make me excited to nurse our little one! I know it will have its challenges but I’m excited for all the ways it will grow me, grow my heart for our son, and help our son to grow healthy and strong. I agree with Paige…whatever way you choose to feed and nourish your children is beautiful!

    • ljmarceau@gmail.com says:

      it can be really hard for the first couple weeks…but it’s so worth it after you make it through that.<3

  6. You’re doing what is right for you and you’re son and that is a beautiful thing, regardless of the comments and looks you might receive from others. Good for you! Oh how nice it would be if we could all just put our preconceived notions aside and commend one another for doing what’s best for our families. Go momma!

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