Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Weaning- Part 2

Wow, I feel so flattered! It has been a really crazy spring/summer. I had a lot of emails asking for more posts, thank you for your interest, I'll try to be better at posting, so here goes.

My last weaning post was about taking care of yourself in the process of weaning, this is more about the baby.

My baby was weaned this week. We are leaving him for a week in July, so it had to be done. Not to mention the fact that I had a clogged duct every week, and I was getting really sick of it. The weaning process took 11 hours. Granted, he is the world's best baby, but he had never accepted a bottle in his life, so I really wondered if it was possible! This was so much easier than I thought it would be. It took hearing the experiences of others before I could finally accept that I wouldn't be nursing this boy until he went to scout camp. I realized that eventually he would get thirsty and have to drink milk from some source other than me.

My sister is here helping me out for awhile. She encouraged me, and told me she would help. That was key. Alone, I wasn't strong enough to hold out when he gave me that look and tugged at my shirt. My sister would take him outside or into another room every time he got that look.

Here is what I did:
11:00 am- last feeding
3:00 pm- rocked him to sleep after spraying milk into his mouth with a bottle. I wore my husbands puffy winter coat so he didn't snuggle up to me, and it didn't smell like me. Fed him lots of solid food throughout the evening.
10:00 pm- After 20 minutes of trying to get him to take the bottle he finally surrendered, latched on, and sucked the bottle inside out.
7:30 am- He woke up and after 10 minutes of trying, he took the bottle. Still wearing my husbands coat :)
11:00 am- My sister gave him the bottle and he took it after around 2 minutes
12:00 am- He took the bottle right away. This was his first bottle of formula, he didn't complain one bit!!!!

So hopefully this post will come in handy for someone else someday. I really needed it, but luckily I had some encouraging stories from friends to give me hope.

Some last pieces of random info that helped me:
-Use hot, fresh breastmilk to simulate nursing as much as possible.
-You need help. Baby knows that you want to nurse him or her, and can smell your milk. You need someone to distract baby so you can get that baby good and thirsty and desperate! And you need the support of others or else it is way too easy to give in.
-My sister-in-law recommended using the Playtex Nurser bottles because they are the most "breast like." I totally think they are. But she also recommended changing bottles until you find one that works.
-I gave my baby a shirt of mine to hold against his face while he took the bottle. But I didn't let him snuggle up to my chest. The winter coat really helped.

Anyone else have any advice? Please share.


Jocee Bergeson said...

Good advice & congrats on a successful weaning Erica!! Weaning was by far the hardest thing of all for me that first year (including labor), so I'm hoping for it to be easier this time around....please....I guess the trick is having that "help" you mentioned. I think it's key, but hard to come by. It is just so hard not to give in w/out help. Anyway, I'll try some of these tips here in about 1 year exactly. :)

The McKellars said...

The only thing I can think to add that I was really surprised about was the emotions I would go through! I totally didn't expect to have all these crazy emotions of wanting to but not wanting to ween. It really was kinda sad, but the nice thing for me was knowing that i'd be able to nurse my other children that come along too, so just be prepared for that part!

Erica said...

I totally agree Elise. I always feel like I'm losing my baby when I wean. It's so emotional. And yet it's totally back and forth like you said. You aren't really sure what you want to do. I've tried to really enjoy the bottle feeding now too. I love being able to look into his eyes while he eats. I think there is a soul-to-soul communication that takes place in through the eyes when the baby drinks the bottle in your arms. It's a different communication than nursing, and I try to feel grateful to be able to experience both with my babies.