Baby led weaning

I feel like perhaps I have had a lot of somber posts lately, and while I want to be authentic and share my struggles, I also want to share the joys of each step in this journey.  

I realised after writing my weaning lament that a lot of changes happened in such a short time that week, and I’m sure that triggered some of those feelings.  The scary breath holding spell, two teeth in one week, and we started solids this past week.  Phew!Image

I was excited to start Cody on solids (although it’s a little bittersweet).  I had never heard of “baby led weaning” before having him, but my lactation consultant and doctor recommended this method for starting solids.  The idea is to ditch the purees and feed the baby what you are eating.  Use big pieces of food with a “handle” so they can reach and grasp what they want to eat and let them have at it!  

Of course, every parent’s thought is…won’t they choke?  I have been assured by the experts mentioned above that they will not choke, and the book “Baby Led Weaning” describes why.  A baby has a gag reflex toward the front of his mouth instead of toward the back like us, so when he eats normal food, he will start to gag on it long before it reaches the “forbidden area” of his airways.  If food does get down that far, coughing is the best method to get it out.  Still, I have adamently reviewed what to do just in case.Image

The book says to let them eat whatever you’re eating with the exception of nuts, salt, sugar, raw honey, eggs,  raw bran and bran products, peanut butter, milk, and pretty much any drinks that aren’t water or breast milk.  Because I have a gluten intolerance and my husband a dairy intolerance (although he doesn’t often admit it, ’cause we love our cheese), I am going to avoid giving Cody these foods until he is 12 months or older.  

So, my experience?  Well, it has been fun.  Watching Cody figure out how to pick things up, watching his face as he tries different foods, hearing his little exclamations that tell me whether he likes it or not, seeing him look at Daniel and me and try to imitate what we’re doing, realising that he is such a boy because he dumps his water out all over his try and splashes in it after immersing his food in it.  I guess the fun is the messiness of it and watching him discover and being able to include him in our meals.  

Image

 

Advertisements

The thought of weaning

I had a realisation tonight.  My baby is 6 months old.  I have planned to breastfeed him until he’s a year old…halfway there.  And I’m so not ready to think about weaning.

I thought I would be eager to wean.  I thought I would be ready to have my boobs back, my room back, my bed back…

but it’s not that simple.

I always thought it was weird when mothers said that they loved nursing.  I guess I just thought of it anatomically instead of the connection side of it.  

And now, I am that mother saying to you that I love nursing.  Nursing is a time when I can cradle my baby, cuddle him, and savour my moments with him as a baby.  As he gets older and busier, nursing is a time when he is still and cuddly.  Nursing is a time when I can breathe in and relax, forgetting my anxieties and troubles.  Nursing not only provides me with a sacred time with my son, but also I know I am giving him the best gift of nourishment physically and emotionally.  I am giving him the gift of antibodies, vitamins, minerals, lowered risk of disease, and a place of comfort and security.  I’m giving myself a decreased risk of breast cancer and, again, time to sit down and quiet my soul.

It makes me cry to think about giving this beautiful ritual up anytime soon.  Because my baby wouldn’t wean on his own for 2-4 years, and maybe that’s what he needs.  Because when he does wean, he will be a little less my baby and a little more grown up.  And both of those realisations sting.  Oh, my heart.

I will cherish every second and hope that we’re both ready when the time comes…whether that’s at 1 year or beyond.

T.G.I.F.

This week seems to be food related, and that could be because my focus has been on eating a healthy diet via Trim Healthy Mama.  Plus, the homeopath told me to cut out soda, so I’ve had to improvise.  

Image

Photo from gwens-nest.com (Also where this yummy recipe came from)

Yesterday, I had plans to have a few friends over for tea/coffee and girl chat.  I planned to make this dip.  They texted last minute and said they couldn’t make it.  I made the dip today and ate it all myself.  It tasted divine.

 

Another recipe I’d like to try is this grain free, sugar free tiramisu.  I love tiramisu.  Ever since I first went to Olive Garden, it’s been my favorite dessert (don’t judge).  So I plan to make this version of it very soon and give it a try.  I’ll let you know how it turns out when I do.

I don’t know if any of you follow The Skeptical Mother on facebook, but she posted an absolutely amazing, heartwarming story today.  It caught my attention when it said a mother saved an abandoned babies’ life.  Wow.  I immediately clicked and read about this pregnant woman and her husband who found a baby girl basically dead on the side of the road and tried to revive her.  Nothing was working, but it occurred to the mom that she already had milk she could feed this baby with.  Miraculously the baby nursed and started improving immediately.  I had tears in my eyes when I read through the story, and I hope that we would all choose the same for any sweet baby we found.  Go have a read.

And if you follow my pinterest, you’ll know how completely obsessed I’ve been with hair this week.  I cut my hair a couple of months after Cody was born and have regretted it ever since.  I needed to at the time, because showering took far too long since Cody wouldn’t sleep more than 30 minutes at a time, but I have missed my long hair ever since.  I’m working on growing it out, and until then searched for a new style.  I also think I’m going to color it red.  Now, I’ve had my hair red before, and it suited me, but that was a gingery natural sort of red.  This time, I want a bold red that no one can ignore.  I just want to make sure it’s a good reason not to ignore.  Anyway, all that to say, here are a few pins of hairstyles/colors that I fell in love with on pinterest this week.

 

Image

Image

 

Image

Image

 

I think getting ahold of my hair style again will give me a little more oomph in my step, but I’m also afraid that I’ll regret it like I did when I cut it.  Opinions?

Admittedly, I already bought a box of hair dye, I’m just waiting for a time when I feel spontaneous enough to use it.  And, I’m having a friend cut my hair on Monday (she is a hairstylist by trade), so I’ve been looking so I know what to tell her.  I sure hope I can get something nice that I like this time.

Have a lovely weekend.

Be still…

I started a breathing exercise for my anxiety in the past couple of days and was advised to think of a word or phrase to repeat to myself while doing the exercise.

Be still and know that I am God.

Today, as I went about my day, I did the exercise and repeated this verse to myself.  One such time happened when I nursed Cody.  Not a sound in the house, my baby was contentedly feeding, and suddenly, my heart was still.  Still.  

When you feel anxious and your thoughts gallop away, stillness is not an option.  At that moment, peace and stillness washed over me, though. 

And then I realised…God helped me to continue nursing for a reason.  He knew I would need these quiet moments with my baby to have a few minutes of peace every day…to be still…and to acknowledge that He is God and has everything under control, even when I don’t.  I am so thankful for my milk supply, a good latch, and my sweet time with Cody when he’s nursing.  It’s a time when I know that something I do is life sustaining and beautiful.  Thank you, Lord.

Letting go a little more

Daniel asked me “What’s wrong” tonight, and I didn’t know how to answer.  I knew I felt emotionally shaky but couldn’t figure out the source.  

Today, my little man took a bottle for the first time.  This might sound silly to get upset over, but with all the trouble I’ve had with breastfeeding, I want to be the only source of his nutrition.  The bottle was a madela calma, which works like a breast (in that Cody will have to suck to get the milk), and it contained breastmilk I pumped, so it’s not like it wasn’t coming from me.  But in that moment, I missed him.  I was sitting right there with him feeding him, but I missed him.  

I start working next week.  I teach piano and will only be teaching a few lessons after school 3 days a week.  It’s a wonderful situation for a mother, but I feel nervous nonetheless.  Daniel will watch Cody when he’s not traveling for work.  Enter bottle for feeding.  I will still feed Cody during lessons at times, and I’m not sure how that will go…how distracting it will be to the students and myself, and how hard it will be to not just be focused on my beautiful son.  When I’m not feeding Cody, I will miss him.  I will miss these days of it only being the two of us duding it through the day and not worrying about a work schedule or people showing up 3 days a week.  Who knows, maybe I will have to go back to this if working doesn’t work out–a tempting thought.  My wish is that I will be able to process this next step of letting go a little more and that teaching will be something of my own that I will enjoy in the years ahead.  When he’s a little bigger, it might be easier…because he won’t need me for feeding anymore and he will be too active to have with me in lessons.  

I think it’s true what they say…that when you have a child, it’s like having a piece of your heart walking around outside of you.  And mothering is forever a process of letting go a little more.  I just hope I can keep up and not be discouraged by the letting go but encouraged by the man my son will become.