Monday, June 1, 2009

The end of an era...

Do I have any male readers, I wonder (I dare you to comment if you're out there. Now that would be interesting.)? If so, you may want to go back to your ESPN site, weather.com, youtube, itunes, or wherever it is in internetland where you guys like to hang out.

As for this blog, it's time to get reflective, in a sappy mom sort of way.

I'm pretty sure I have nursed a baby for the last time.

(You can't say I didn't warn you, guys...)

Tess will be one year old this month... so hard to believe! It's time, I suppose, but it is still a little bittersweet for me nonetheless.

You see, Tess is the last one. It's a permanent sort of thing, unless the Lord, who is sovereign, chooses us for some modern-day miracle. That made me sad for a while too, but now I'm over it. I think the baseball schedule did it for me.

Nursing is not for everyone, I know this. But for me, it has been a wonderful choice.

And a lengthy one...

Four children, and almost a four year commitment. With each baby that came along, I swore I'd at least pump and give them a bottle every once and a while. Like when I wanted to go out on a date or something. But I never did. Before you get the idea that I'm that die-hard, I'm not. I'm mostly just lazy. :)

While this made for some excellent bonding, it also made for one land-locked momma. Especially early on when feedings are so frequent. Either I stayed or the baby went with me. Simple as that. Most of the time this worked well, but sometimes it did feel like a huge sacrifice. Especially as the older ones got older, and the juggling of the schedules became more involved.

But looking back, my did it go quickly. And now that I am leaving the childbearing years of my life behind, I am becoming sentimental. You know, of the 3am feedings that you think they might never give up... now those are some of the most precious memories I have. When everyone else in the house was asleep and all was quiet (I don't know about your house, but that's a rarity around here!), what a joy it was to have that one-on-one time rocking and feeding a sweet little one. And praying. Lots of opportunities to pray in the middle of the night for me over the years... :)

Are you a weary momma today? Whether you nurse or not, it's all hard work. But I'm slowly gaining perspective. I'm trying not to wish the days away anymore. Because there will come a day when they'd rather hang out with their cool dad instead of you. You'll compete with baseball schedules and friends down the street, messy creeks and all things Star Wars.

And you might just look back on those baby days and think to yourself, "Those were simple times," even though it didn't feel very simple at the time.

Just ask me.

Now before you start to think that I'm stuck in a retrospective rut - trust me - I'm already looking ahead. There is so much to look forward to! Fun, new opportunities that come with each new stage of parenting. And possibly my favorite part... date nights with my favorite guy that can begin before the baby is in bed for the night.

Yes, I think I'm starting to like this...

9 comments:

Amber said...

Thanks, Whitney! I needed that...
Love the picture of you two! So beautiful!

Theresa said...

You nailed it, Whitney -- nursing is indeed the sweetest of occupations, and the end is bittersweet. Our kids need love and nurturing in different ways at different times, and some of those ways are easier to give than others. Just as God gave us bodies that are capable of providing warmth and sustenance to an infant, He will provide all that our children need through us, if we can "get ourselves out of the way" enough to be effective channels. Nursing is good practice for the self-sacrifice that love demands. Your kids are blessed to have a mom like you.

Cory Costello said...

you wanted a guy to read an comment - back down a cup size - sorry Ty!!!

banannery said...

I guess I'll just take your word for it…

Andrea Roberts said...

Oh Whit I am seeing how quickly they grow. Addison is starting to hold her own bottle and I can't stand it! That is sometimes the only time we get where both of us are happy campers! I love spending that quality time with her and already I am seeing how fast they grow. I love you! Thank you for your blog, it always makes me smile!

panana said...

I have a comment.
I am a guy.
I am an old guy.
"AWESOME PHOTO!"
Pa Daugherty

Kenya Fitzgerald Lakes said...

I do not even have children yet and this made me tear up! I love reading your blog because it remains one of the few optimistic portrayals of parenthood, particularly motherhood. You capture every moment, good and bad, so beautifully; I love it!

Beautiful picture as well :)

Angie Vik said...

I stumbled across your blog because I wanted to find a picture of a bread machine, and google said your blog had one. Still haven't found the bread machine picture yet.

Anyway, loved what you wrote about nursing. I have seven kids and nursed the middle five. Didn't work so well with the last no matter what I tried but she is 10 now and thriving so I'm over it.

It's always sad to stop nursing. It is a sweet time. They get older and don't like to snuggle as much. I look at my 21 year old son and wish I could go back for one day to when he was little and hold and snuggle him. Blessings on your family.

Tyler and Whitney said...

Angie, just wanted to say hello! It's always fun to find out that someone other than my mom reads our blog. :) Seven kids... you sound like one amazing woman.