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I wrote awhile ago about Truman’s decision to stop nursing. He suddenly decided that he didn’t need or want to nurse anymore and though it was a little sad for me, I was also relieved to have a break between nursing him and nursing a newborn. Well…he has decided that he is not done nursing after all. Apparently, it was just a few weeks of vacation and he now wants to nurse in the morning and once in awhile before bed. I am a big believer in self-weaning and prefer a gentle parenting approach in all ways, so when he asked to nurse again, I asked if he really wanted to and then allowed him. I am not sure if he is getting any actual milk, but he definitely is getting comfort from nursing and seems very affectionate with me lately as well. I think something has clicked and he knows things are changing. I don’t think he can grasp that there is a new baby joining our family but I think his intuition tells him that my attention is being pulled away just a little and that something is happening. I wonder if coming back to breastfeeding is his way of holding on to something familiar, and ensuring that he has some quiet time with me.
I’m not exactly sure exactly what is going on, but now we are working on manners and boundaries. If I am uncomfortable or hurting, I let him know that he cannot twist and turn and he can only nurse for a few minutes. He gets a little crabby about it sometimes, but so far he is really responding well to discussion and me explaining my feelings. He has also gotten frustrated with what I can only imagine is my lack of milk supply. He pulls away and looks at me like I have three heads, pushes on my boob and whines, “ahhhh? ahhhh?” I tell him, “I’m sorry, it must be all gone. We can try again later.” He will usually be satisfied with that answer. It is such a different and unexpected turn in our journey. I don’t mind either way, but I am a little nervous about the possibility of tandem nursing once Grant is born. I know it is very possible, and I know I can do it, but trying to make sure that Truman doesn’t feel pushed aside or traded in for a newer model is my biggest concern. Grant will obviously need to nurse more often and his needs will have to come first, considering milk is his only source of nutrition, while Truman is able to eat and drink everything he wants. Will I be able to effectively explain to him the difference? Even if he understands, will it be enough to prevent him from having hurt feelings? Once I go back to work, I’ll be pumping as well. Will I be able to keep up with full time nursing, pumping and part time nursing? Maybe he will decide he’s done again and I won’t have to worry about it at all. Until then, I’m reading everything I can get my hands on about tandem nursing and nursing a toddler, and praying that Grant will be a quick learner. Did you tandem nurse?