This morning will be the last morning that my baby will really be my baby. She’ll still wake up every morning and ask for me, and I will still be there, but I won’t offer her any comfort, snuggled in my bed, both of us with eyes closed, sharing those sweet early morning nursing moments.
It’s a hard decision to make, but the last week or so, she’s been demanding more milk and it’s just not there for her. I have tucked her back into bed with a still growling belly and it’s clear that it won’t be good enough anymore. This is our last feeding to drop, and it’s probably the one I’ve enjoyed the most. Opening my eyes to see her staring back at me, then her eyelashes flutter and she drifts back into a comfortable place in her mommy’s arms, safe and protected. Only I could give that to her. Only on me did she depend for that transition from sleepiness to wakefulness, or more likely, to drowse back into a light sleep to finish out the night.
I remember her eyelashes, so pale as to be non-existent, eyebrows barely showing through her skin, fuzzy head with just a wisp of hair. Now, her hair gets in her eyes, her lashes are dark, her brows turned brown, her skin clear and a rosy shade of peach. She’s growing up.
If you’re new here, you probably don’t know that I pumped milk for 3 months for her before switching over to nursing last Feb. 1st. Since then, she’s been fed by me for 14 months, except when I had surgery in September. It’s a constant in her life, probably the only one she’s ever known. I hate to remove that security. I hate to take away that easiest love that I’ve ever given.
I guess you could call the whole thing bittersweet. We’re choosing to do this now because in a couple of weeks, we will be moving. While I would be okay with continuing to nurse her for a while after we move in, it probably is easier now to go ahead and let it go, for both of us.
She will undoubtedly ask for a few days and then she’ll forget all about it. I’ll just be her mommy, not her source of nutrition, not her constant source of comfort. That immune protection that has kept her consistently healthy will be going by the wayside. While she has long since gained her own immune protection, I am glad that it is almost summer. Fewer illnesses to go around.
I know I will always be her mommy, and she will always be my baby, but things are changing, it will still be love, but different.