Haven’t Exactly Enjoyed Breastfeeding this Time Around

I think I’d like to stop breastfeeding my 13 month old soon.  I nursed my son until he was 16 months and we stopped very gradually and naturally – we were at  twice a day at 12  months, then once a day from 14 months and then one night I wasn’t there to nurse him before bed and that was it.

Right now I nurse my daughter 4 or 5 times in a 24 hour period.  And I can’t say I enjoy it.

I’m having a very different breastfeeding experience second time around.  I feel very physically uncomfortable when I nurse her for longer than 10 minutes and I always have.  I start to feel very constricted and my breathing gets shallow.  I sometimes get this feeling like my skin is crawling, it’s physically very uncomfortable and I’ve had moments where it’s made me feel anxious and even angry.  And then as soon as I unlatch her the feeling goes away.

I looked into it early on when I started noticing these feelings as they were nothing like I had experienced with my son. Turns out this is actually a thing called breastfeeding/nursing aversion and agitation (BAA).  I felt better knowing I wasn’t crazy and I wasn’t alone.

If you click on the link you’ll see they offer a few different theories as to why this occurs. I think my aversion is linked to sleep deprivation and having very little time to myself.

It’s not just the BAA that makes me want to stop  (it’s actually  not nearly as bad as it was a few months ago), it’s how she nurses. As she nurses she is hell bent on sticking her other hand down my shirt and pinching my nipple.  This is a pretty new thing and it’s so fucking annoying.  I now have to nurse her with one hand firmly over my other breast.  She still tries with all her might to get her hand in there.

I’m going to think about it a bit more before making any changes.  I like that it happened gradually and naturally with my son but I have a feeling I’m going to have to be more proactive with this one.



What My Morning Looked Like

My days really begin with the night and last night was pretty bad.  My son (3) woke screaming at 1am.  I went in and gave him a cuddle.  He then cried out again at 2am asking for dad.  I told him I would go get him and I just went back to bed and he fell back asleep.  I’m such a liar. My daughter (1) then woke at 2:30 and I went in and nursed her till 3.  She woke again at 4 and I went in again.  I heard her cry at 6  but I was too tired to get up. I was woken up by one of them, can’t remember which one, at 7:15.

And so the day began.

This is not typical.  Usually my daughter wakes at around 6:30 and I bring her into bed with me and then we go downstairs together and hang out/eat/drink coffee until her brother wakes.  But this morning I got up and because no one as freaking out I went downstairs and made a coffee and then brought it up and into my daughters room.  She was happy so we stayed in her room playing.

My son was not happy.  He wanted nothing to do with me and only wanted dad.

I drank my coffee and we all eventually made our way downstairs by hopping in the “batmobile” (3 year olds imaginations are seriously the best) and bumping down the stairs on our bums one step at a time.  Lots of giggles were had.

I changed my daughters diaper (thinking I should have done it upstairs but was incapable of doing anything before properly caffeinated) and then put her in her high chair while I made oatmeal with blueberries for breakfast. She got started on a banana and my son got grapes and some apple.  He also wanted frozen blueberries and juice which I dilute with water.

Somewhere in there my son got a diaper change and I got him dressed.  I brought the garbage out.  We left the house at around 9 for the daycare drop off.

Came back had a snack, made  plans with a friend and had more coffee.  The rest of the morning was a bit of a blur but I know I spent a lot of time playing with my daughter on my bedroom floor.  She is the happiest, sweetest little thing.

I have to be honest, I’m kind of falling asleep writing this so I’m going to end it here.  It’s 7:45 pm and I am drinking a glass of wine ready to pass out.

Hopefully tonight no one wakes me up.

Listening and Trusting

When my daughter turned one I thought our sleep issues were  behind us.  She slept through the night on her birthday and continued to do so for a few days following.  Then some time in the last few weeks things began to fall apart again.  She started waking once, then twice and is often up for hours in the night.

My son was a horrible sleeper too, but only for the first few months of his life. He slept through consistently from 10 months on, but my daughter is different.  She’s extremely attached to me and soooo inconsistent.  What works one day doesn’t work the next.

I think the hardest part in this whole sleep thing is not so much the exhaustion (and that shit is brutal) but the constant questioning.  Constantly trying and wondering: What am I doing wrong?  I’m always thinking of ways to ‘fix’ it and that in itself is exhausting.

Yesterday I picked up a book I haven’t looked at in a while – Healthy Sleep Habits Healthy Child – and became convinced that I needed to do something (again) about our situation.  I decided I needed to just let her cry.

And so last night I did just that.  And she cried.  And she cried.  And she cried.  After half an hour I was so agitated.  My stomach was in knots and I could feel the stress seeping out of  my pores.  After an hour I started to feel sick.  And angry.  And annoyed.  And sad.  I questioned my decision but didn’t want to go in and “teach” her to cry for an hour.  After 1.5 hours I couldn’t stand it any longer and I went in and nursed her to sleep.

Now, just so you don’t think I’m  totally heartless, she wasn’t scream crying the whole time.  It was a lot of protest crying and it was kind of on and off.

Today is another day and I don’t want to do that again tonight.  But I don’t know what to do.  And so I meditated on it, because at the end of the day, no matter what the books say, I need to do what feels right for me.  And last night did not feel anything close to right.

After I put her down for her nap I sat on my bedroom floor.  I closed my eyes and took five deep breaths.  I then posed the question: How can I get my baby to sleep better at night?

And I listened. And this is what I heard:

Go to her.

Comfort her.

This phase may be extremely difficult but it will not last.  She will eventually sleep through.

I will not be breastfeeding her forever.  For not much longer in fact, so relax into these final late night nursings.

She is my last baby.

And she is growing so fast.

I opened my eyes and felt my eyes well up.

Yes, I’m tired.  I’m also confused and conflicted.  The books tell me that I am not helping her by nursing her in the night.  Her paediatrician suggested sleep training.  My husband wants me to let her cry.

But my heart tells me otherwise.  And as a mother I trust that more than anything else.

At least I’m trying to.





A Little Self Love

It’s 8:15 pm and I am laying in bed exhausted and unable to turn my mind off. These past two days have been so hard.  Not just because I’m sick, but because it was such an emotional couple of days.

As a mother to my two littles I find I’m quite good at putting my own personal, physical, ailments to the side.  When they reach for me I pick them up without second thought to my twitchy back. I wore my son in the ergo for hours when it hurt my hips because it was the only way he would sleep.  I’ve spent countless nights in an uncomfortable position so to not wake a dozing baby laying in my arms. I stayed up all night with him when he was throwing up, even though I was in and out of the bathroom too.  I’ve had my hair pulled, my chest scratched, my eyes poked and have had more things thrown at me than I care to count.

These things do not keep me up at night.  I just accept that it’s part of the package and move on.  Such a martyr, I know.

But the emotional stuff, it’s the emotional stuff that I can’t handle.  Not only do I not know what to do with my sons temperament, which when he’s sick is just so incredibly trying, but more importantly I don’t know what to do with my anger that rises so quickly when the outbursts just don’t stop.

I’m laying in bed right now feeling so much guilt.  So much sadness.  He’s sick.  He needed me and I couldn’t be there for him in the way he needed me.

Today he was exhausted but wouldn’t nap.  My one year old is also sick – we all are – and needed to be in my arms all day.  I managed to get him in his bed. He wanted me to cuddle, but he didn’t want his sister in the room.  I was torn.  I couldn’t do two things at once, be two places at once.  One of the babies was going to be unhappy.  I put her down and she screamed and screamed.  He seemed placated by this, happy even.  Once he was calm, I told him I have to pick her up, and he  screamed. I even tried nursing her laying down in his bed but she just wanted to crawl on him, which, you guessed it, made him angry.

There are no options here.  I don’t know what the loving thing to do would have been.  The more he cried the angrier I got.

God I feel like shit about that. Here I was getting angry when all my sick baby needed was me.

Things had been building all day.  My daughter was extremely clingy (which can be trying all on it’s own) and the more she clung to me the more upset he got.  He threw his food (and grinned at me after he did it), he hit his sister, he scream cried when I gave him a smoothie that he didn’t like and then threw that across the room.

I find this stage to actually be harder than when she was a newborn. At least then she slept or would just lay contently on his floor while I gave him the attention he needed. I mean, how do you discipline a sick child who is clearly lashing out because he wants my attention?

Having two kids under the age of two is hard. It’s really fucking hard.

[Cue self talk: I am doing my best. I am doing my best. I am doing my best.]

Usually wanting to be better is a good thing.  It can really fuel you.  But when it comes to motherhood, it never feels enough, it just feels suffocating.  Especially when you add it to the pile of all the other stuff that’s not working right now.

I opened up my computer tonight to remind myself that I am a good mom.  I am a good person. I love my babies so much it hurts sometimes. I am capable of having so much compassion, but when I’m strung out, as I am now, it’s impossible.

So instead of sitting here wracked with guilt and other not so helpful emotions right before bed, I’m trying to cultivate a little self love.  A little forgiveness.  A little compassion.

And when the babes wake in the night, which the inevitably will, I will go to them and cuddle them and kiss them and whisper in their soft heads how much I love them.  And pray that we all get over this awful cold/flu soon!!!

Side note: how fitting is it that my husbands vasectomy is tomorrow? More about that another day….


A Little Birthday Tradition for my Kids

My baby girl turned one yesterday!!!!  We had a such a great day and I only had one, ok maybe two, emotional moments.

Ahhhh one years old.

Longest and yet shortest year ever.

Also, she slept through the night last night.  After a few weeks (months?) of pure torturous sleep, we all finally slept.  Yes, I slept too.

So all I need to do is throw a party, change her sheets, run the humidifier in her room, and let her take only one nap – every day.

For real though, we are now on a one nap schedule.  Hopefully this fixes all of our sleep problems.

And so yes ,she’s one now and we had such a perfect day celebrating her.  The house was full with family (so many cousins) and friends.  She devoured her cake. Oh man, that girl went. to. town.  Made me a proud mamma haha.

Before I went to bed I wrote her a letter, as I’ve done for my son on his birthdays.  I wrote to tell her how much she is loved and how truly amazing she is.  I also wrote her things like where her dad works, what our days look like, what her favourite foods are and things like that.  On her 18th birthday I’ll give her the box of letters.  I hope it gives her some insight into what she was like at each age growing up, what our (me and my husband and our family in general) lives were like and most of all, how much she is loved.

That girl is so loved.

Happy birthday sweet baby girl.

No Vision to Work Towards

I had a one hour chat with a life coach the other day.  I guess you’d call her a life coach.  She works predominantly with woman who feel a little lost in motherhood.  A lot of her work focuses around weight loss, which is a shame really because there’s so much more to coming back to the woman you are than getting back to an ideal weight – but I don’t have that issue, so who am I to say.

Anyways, I got in contact with her because I wanted to feel inspired.  I wanted someone something to spark a little motivation in me to be more than just a mom right now.

I can’t say I got very much out of the call.  She was new at the whole coaching thing and it kind of felt prescribed. She asked a lot of hokey questions and even though we had a good chat, I didn’t leave the call feeling any different.

It was a start though. I was nervous going into it and it’s good to do things that make me nervous.

One of the things I feel like I’m missing in my life right now, and I talked to her about this, is that I don’t really have any clear life goals.  I don’t have a vision of the life I want.  I don’t know what I want.  And this isn’t like me.  I’m used to working towards something. I like the feeling of visualizing something, working towards it, and then achieving it.  And I’m good at that….once I know what it is that I want.

I’m funny that way though.  When I did yoga teacher training (I went to Costa Rica for three weeks a lifetime ago) we were to pick a word that we wanted to feel or exude.  Mind was ‘present’.  I felt at that time I was always looking to the next thing and I wasn’t taking the time to truly be present and grateful.

I am now more present than ever and here I am wanting to have or thinking I need something to strive for.

Perhaps this is a good thing.  My pendulum has swung and I feel in time I will come to a happy balance.

And like I wrote in my Acceptance and Surrender post, perhaps now is not the time to manifest dreams.  If I accept that and continue to just be present with my kids while on maternity leave, if I surrender to the guilt or whatever it is that’s nagging me to achieve, I can then relax and maybe my vision will just come.  And that’s when it will be most powerful, I truly believe that.  I don’t want to work towards something just for the sake of it.  I want it to be completely what my heart and soul desire.

So I’m going to just sit back, relax, and listen.  Maybe I don’t really need to do much more than that right now.

And now, onto the sleep log….


5:40 she woke up, I tried to get her back to sleep but she was wide awake, chatting in my arms so at 6 am we officially started our day
9:30 went down for her nap with no crying (I laid her down asleep)

It’s 10:15 now so we’ll see what the rest of the day brings.  Hoping for an afternoon nap, even though it didn’t really help her night sleep all that much last night.  She didn’t sleep through, though she didn’t wake for hours last night so that’s something.

I just realized, I do actually have a vision I’m working towards – getting my baby girl to sleep through the night. Maybe not so big picture, but it would be life changing for me at the moment, so yeah, kind of a big deal.

To be continued…

Losing my Mind and Sleep Log Day Three

Has it only been three days?  Time does a funny thing when you are severely sleep deprived.  Did you hear about our night last night?  If not, check it out, it was a fun one.

I’ve kind of been losing my mind lately.  OK, not kind of and I have been for a little while.  All joking aside, all is not well.  I know it’s partially, if not entirely, due to two things:

  1. Our sleep situation.
  2. Winter in Canada.

Yesterday was an especially trying day. My husband called in sick so that he could help me out (so grateful for that) so I decided to go write my drivers license test.  My license expired some time ago and it’s been on my to do list for ever and my husband gives me such a hard time about not having it that I thought, kind of as a favour to him, that I would just go do it.

Have I mentioned how sleep deprived I am?

Writing the test was SUCH A BAD IDEA.  Not only was I extremely tired, but I hadn’t studied.  I flipped through the manual while waiting and none of it was sinking in.  It was like I was looking at it through a foggy window.

So this test, not so common sense.  It asked things like ‘how close to a fire hydrant can you legally park’ and ‘how many demerit points can you accrue before your license is suspended’.  I was sitting there mumbling to myself ‘I don’t fucking know’.

Needless to say, I failed.

But the good thing is you can do it over, right away.  So hells yea I was doing it over, I made it all the way out there I was getting this done.

Second time around I was presented with a new variety of ‘I don’t fucking know’ questions.

I failed again.

Guys, I cried.  I’m that fucking tired that I cried.  I have never, and I mean ever, in my life failed a test.  It’s not that I’m a nerd (ok maybe a little) but I ALWAYS show up prepared.

Or I used to.

I am so off balance. I feel so far from the person that I used to be.  My husband thinks it’s a good thing I failed, kind of like a wake up call.  I need to take care of myself.  I need to tend to my needs and find my footing again.

I also really need to get my fucking license.


I’m writing this at 2:30pm and my daughter is babbling in her crib, not sleeping.  At least she’s not crying.  So here we are, day 3:


6:30 up for the day – she would have slept longer but her brother woke up the whole house with his screaming, I think the poor guy had a night terror
9:15-10:40 morning nap.  Cried for 10 minutes, babbled fora bit more then fell asleep.
2:10 laid her down for a nap, cried a little but mostly babbled
7:30 pm asleep. She started scream crying while in my arms before I even laid her down. Once in her crib she cried for 5 minutes then fell asleep
11:10 pm woke up and cried out on and off for 20 minutes, was hoping she’d get back to sleep on her own..but nope, I went in at 11:30 and laid her back down at 11:45
(I then tossed and turned for quite a while…)
5:40 work up, tried to get her back to sleep but she was not having it so we officially started our day at 6 am


  • Total sleep = 12.5 hours
  • nursed her 4 or 5 times
  • went outside this afternoon after lunch <- kind of a big deal ’round here
  • ate a big dinner and had a nice bath but she was emotional at the end of the day (she tried to stick her finger in a socket and my husband gave her a very stern ‘no’ and she lost it, never recovered)
  • really only one wake up and a quick one, so not bad all things considered
  • I realize she’s going through some pretty bad separation anxiety right now, that and perhaps in the middle of Leap 8 of the Wonder Weeks – I didn’t follow this with my son, but she seems to be right on track with that whole thing, displaying all of the behaviours listed…perhaps this means there’s a natural end in sight coming in the next week or two?