Tuesday, January 8, 2013

New Year's resolutions

My resolution: Less screen time. More being present for my kids. Sometimes playing with kids is really consuming and sort of relaxing. Sometimes I think I could put together 20 piece puzzles, draw with crayons, and rearrange doll house furniture all day. Sometimes though, I feel like we are engaging in a child/adult form of parallel play and I would probably rather be checking facebook/twitter/pinterest. So I do. But then when a toddler tries to re-engage with me, I'm like: wait, hold up, this looks like an amazing crockpot recipe. And that's not cool. So I'm going to start instituting some sacred/phone free time in the evenings.
Hannah's resolution: to understand WHY. She is into the "why" phase, big time. And also, how. As in, "Mommy, how did we get out of your belly?" (looking at old family pictures). For once in my life I wished I had a cesarean. And no question is too small or impossible to answer. "Mommy, why do I have four M&Ms in my hand?" Um, because I put four M&Ms there? "NO! but WHY?!" uh...because...gravity? "NOOO! WHYYYYY?!"  
Maggie's resolution: To never stop breastfeeding, ever. Ok, it needs to be said. Self weaning is a LIE. And maybe I can't speak for all babies everywhere. But for this one, as long as there is a supply, there will be a demand; she will not be giving this up without a fight. And if I have one more male relative tell me she is too old, I will punch them in the face. First of all, she isn't too old as per the AAP and WHO. But more importantly, you have no idea, as a non-mothering dude, the pressure women face to breastfeed. "Breast is best" means nothing to you besides a rhyming thing about boobs and milk that you've heard. It isn't a threat against your womanhood or motherliness. I'm sick of breastfeeding. I've been sick of it since I first plugged in a breast pump. Since waiting for the colostrum to turn to milk. Since the searing pain in the early days. Breastfeeding is awesome and all, but like many things distinctly feminine, it is also kind of a lose-lose. You "lose" anytime you have to breastfeed in public. You lose when you miss out on a career/networking opportunity because you don't know where you'd pump or what you'd do with the milk afterwards. You lose when you are in so much pain in the postpartum days and some uselessly unhelpful friend says, "this is normal, you can't give up!" (IS IT NORMAL? Are you inside my nipples feeling the horrific pain I'm feeling?! The pain that made recovering from pushing out a nine pound baby seem like nothing at all?)  Conversely, you lose when you get a judging glance for mixing formula and water in public. You lose when your kid gets sick and the doctor/nurse asks if you breastfeed and it sounds like they are asking exactly how much of this child's suffering is your fault. Sure, the bonding thing is incredible (but breastfeeders don't have a corner of that market, FYI). And conversely, sure the ability to jointly share feeding duties is amazing (again, no monopoly for bottle feeders either, but also no need to pump first = a huge advantage). But still. She is almost two and showing no signs of quitting. Only signs of being one of those kindergartners people shake their heads and warn you about. But this kid has told my boob (since her first birthday, only one of them still works. So technically, I guess I'm halfway done weaning her! yahoo!) she loves it. My boob. She said, "I love you" to my boob. And the thing is, it isn't like it is a cigarette or a whiskey bottle. It's just a barely lactating boob. How do you take that away from a not-quite two year old?! No seriously, how do you do it? I need help.

1 comment:

  1. I gave Charlie a bottle of milk until he was past two - for many of the same reasons you continue to breastfeed Maggie. All I can say is, taking the bottle away ended up being no big deal at all to Charlie. It surprised me. I expected a battle and there was none. Moral: kids will surprise you. Sometimes they take pity on us and let us win a battle or two.