Monday, February 25, 2013

Bittersweet Boobie

Newborn Baby Adelia
Emrys hadn't asked to be nursed in nearly 72 hours. So instead of being a strong mom, I became a sentimental sap.

Fearing my time as a breast feeding mom had slipped away without much notice, I decided to cradle my baby in my arms one last time and nurse her. I wanted a moment to look back at my journey, and recall Emrys' and Adelia's times of nursing babies.

Anyone who has nursed for an extended period of time will understand and appreciate fully when I say this moment was so bittersweet it left me in tears. Yes, nursing can hurt. And yes, it is difficult. But to say it is rewarding is an understatement I won't bother explaining it.

"From the outside looking in, you can never understand it. 

From the inside looking out, you can never explain it."

Newborn baby Emrys
As Emrys did what is most likely her final nursing (and by default mine as well), I couldn't help but think of what nursing has meant to me over the past three years. How it has shaped me. Both in the literal sense as well as the metaphorical one. How it has changed me. How desperately I am going to miss these incredibly intimate moments. How breastfeeding advocacy, awareness and empowerment has become so deeply ingrained in who I am as a mother, friend and woman. 

As Emrys finished she pulled away, smiled at me and initiated her favorite toddler game of head shake and giggle. It was a sweet goodbye to this chapter of my life. A baby becoming a toddler, and a young woman forever changed. 

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