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Breastfeeding Again

Nicole Grace
Jacksonville FL USA
From: NEW BEGINNINGS, Vol. 20 No. 1, January-February 2003, p. 10

I began to wean my daughter when she turned one. At La Leche League Group meetings I saw toddlers breastfeeding, but I didn't plan to do that. I thought that breastfeeding to one year was enough for my family and I didn't trust the idea of natural weaning. My husband was supportive of my breastfeeding Kaitlyn, but he followed my lead on the weaning. Kaitlyn was not so obliging. I had a difficult time saying no when she would cuddle against me, searching for my breast or when she fell and needed comforting. Eventually, breastfeeding was so infrequent that she accepted a bottle instead of nursing most evenings.

Within three months of this mother-led weaning, we were in the midst of nighttime fevers, crying, and horrible colds that wouldn't stop. One antibiotic gave Kaitlyn hives, and the others didn't do anything at all for her ear infections. Only one antibiotic actually worked for her and still the infections would come back. Finally, her pediatrician wanted us to consult with an ear, nose, and throat doctor to have tubes inserted in her ears in order to help clear drainage. I wasn't sure I was comfortable with that option.

I wanted information about a possible nonsurgical solution, and I was willing to consider alternative medicine. I found a practitioner who blended conventional and alternative treatments. Her main recommendations were quite simple: resume breastfeeding and remove dairy products from my daughter's diet. After one month our pediatrician was amazed at her ears. They looked absolutely perfect, with no trace of being filled with fluid. I canceled the appointment for ear tubes. The nights of fevers and crying were over! Now Kaitlyn only breastfeeds once every couple of weeks, the infections are gone, and this time she is choosing when and how to wean. It is working so much better!

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