Welcome to the Carnival of Breastfeeding hosted by Blacktating and The Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog. This month’s topic is Extended Breastfeeding. Please visit the links to all the participants at the bottom of this post.
Are you oh-so-surprised that I’m writing yet another post about full-term nursing? Yeah, I didn’t think so. I know it’s a general theme on the blog lately, but it’s a big deal to me right now. I’m constantly amazed at the extra stigma associated with nursing beyond X amount of months while simultaneously being amazed with how much better my life is because we still nurse.
This post goes beyond that though–specifically to tandem nursing. Tandem nursing is nursing more than one child at once. This can be in the form of birthing more than one child at once or having one child still nursing when you have your next. For me, obviously the second will be more applicable.
Don’t worry, I’m not pregnant. The idea is very much on my brain though. The actuality of having a plan to get pregnant in the future is amazing to me. I’m ridiculously excited.
The problem for me is thinking of how I’m going to handle Peanut and a new little nursling. I picture some logistical things like wearing the infant while helping Peanut in her My Gym class or spending a lot of time watching Disney movies, but it’s hard to picture the emotional side. When I think of birthing a child, I still think of Peanut. That’s what I picture. I’m so excited for another one to come, but at the same time terrified of how it will affect her.
That’s why I’m excited to tandem nurse. Of course, Peanut could wean before I get pregnant or while I’m pregnant, but I’m hoping we get to continue throughout it all. I’m sure that other moms think I’m crazy. When I told a friend who was tandem nursing that I was excited to hopefully do that one day, she looked at me like I was insane. But I am genuinely excited to have the opportunity, and here’s why:
1. Keeping emotional connection with Peanut. I’m not at all saying that mothers who don’t tandem nurse don’t stay emotionally connected with their older child, but I’m sure that tandem nursing helps. Tandem nursing can decrease the older child’s feelings of jealousy. It shows that they’re still just as important to you. It keeps one thing (and a very important thing at that) the same within all of the chaos of having a new sibling.
2. Peanut bonding with the new baby. I’ve already mentioned decreasing jealousy, but beyond that, they’re doing something together from the start. They’re sharing mommy together. They’re being nourished together. Nursing calms Peanut down and I honestly think that will make her more likely to be nice to the baby.
3. It will make my life easier. Nursing already makes my life easier. Even having one toddler running around you in circles all day is exhausting and having that break while she nurses is beyond welcome. In the case of tandem nursing, I’ll be exhausted with a new baby and a toddler to entertain. This toddler doesn’t enjoy sitting at home much. This toddler easily gets worked up and goes nuts. I’m sure this will just increase with age and thank goodness I’ll have a way to calm her, help her when she’s hurt, or just keep her happy when we’re all new together.
I’m sure there will be extra difficulties when it comes to nursing two. I’m sure that there will be days where I hate it. I’m sure that one day it will end. In spite of all of this, I will love it in the end. I am excited to have such an attached way to bring a new child into this world.
Please read these posts by the other Carnival of Breastfeeding participants:
Mamapoeki from Authentic Parenting: Extended Breastfeeding?
Mama Alvina of Ahava & Amara Life Foundation: Breastfeeding Journey Continues
Elita @ Blacktating: The Last Time That Never Was
Diana Cassar-Uhl, IBCLC: Old enough to ask for it
Karianna @ Caffeinated Catholic Mama: A Song for Mama’s Milk
Judy @ Mommy News Blog: My Favorite Moments
Tamara Reese @ Please Send Parenting Books: Extended Breastfeeding
Jenny @ Chronicles of a Nursing Mom: The Highs and Lows of Nursing a Toddler
Christina @ MFOM: Natural-Term Breastfeeding
Rebekah @ Momma’s Angel: My Sleep Breakthrough
Suzi @ Attachedattheboob: Why I love nursing a toddler
Claire @ The Adventures of Lactating Girl: My Hopes for Tandem Nursing
Elisa @ blissfulE: counter cultural: extended breastfeeding
Momma Jorje: Extended Breastfeeding, So Far!
Stephanie Precourt from Adventures in Babywearing: “Continued Breastfeeding”: straight from the mouths of babes
The Accidental Natural Mama: Nurse on, Mama
Sarah @ Reproductive Rites: Gratitude for extended breastfeeding
Nikki @ On Becoming Mommy: The Little Things
Dr. Sarah @ Good Enough Mum: Breastfeeding for longer than a year: myths, facts and what the research really shows
Amy @ WIC City: (Extended) Breastfeeding as Mothering
The Artsy Mama: Why Nurse a Toddler?
Christina @ The Milk Mama: The best thing about breastfeeding
TopHat @ the bee in your bonnet: From the Mouths of Babes
Callista @ Callista’s Ramblings: Pressure To Stop Breastfeeding
Amanda @ Postilius: Nursing My Toddler Keeps My Baby Close
Sheryl @ Little Snowflakes: Tandem Nursing- The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
Zoie @ Touchstone Z: Breastfeeding Flavors
Lauren @ Hobo Mama: Same old, same old: Extended breastfeeding
Tanya @ Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog: Six misconceptions about extended breastfeeding
Motherlove Herbal Company: Five reasons to love nursing a toddler