After 25 months of breastfeeding it looks like Jack has finally weaned. We've gone three days and nights now without any breastfeeding at all and although emotionally both of us have found it difficult, the worst seems to be over.
We've been gradually weaning for several months now, but in the end I just had to stop abruptly. Last week I felt so drained and physically exhausted that I made up my mind. My skin had broken out in spots, I was short-tempered with everyone and the lack of any rest was killing me. I realised that I was suffering health-wise and it simply wasn't fair on anyone in the family. Jack is a good, strong, healthy little boy now but his mummy was anything but strong and healthy.
After visiting my sister-in-law who has just had a new baby girl, I suddenly saw Jack as no longer a little baby. Yes he's still my little baby but I have two other children to care for too. I made up my mind that it was time to get started on some strong vitamin pills and to enjoy the time we all have together. And that was it. No more breastfeeds...
Jack has been remarkably good about it and although on several occasions he has got a bit upset and whispered, "Mama Juice" to me, I have just had to stick to my guns. Occasionally he tries to nuzzle his way towards a feed but I can't give in. I'm trying really hard to be strong about this decision and it just wouldn't be fair on either of us, not to mention confusing for him.
It's important, I feel, to only continue breastfeeding for as long as you are able to and for as long as both of you want to. I didn't particularly want to quit yet but to be honest I don't know if there's ever a perfect time; this was about as close as I could get to one.
So we've reached the end of this particular journey.
I wonder if it's something I'll ever experience again?
If not, I'm pleased that in one of the countries with the lowest incidences of breastfeeding in the world, Ireland, I've breastfed for so long. And I will do so again if we do add to our family - although that isn't really on the cards!!
Now, how do I get him to stay in his own bed at night? :)