Okay, nothing new here for me except some rather interesting developments from Gavin’s point of view…
As I mentioned earlier, I was going to continue nursing Gavin through the pregnancy unless he decided weaned himself and I have been. Well, I have continued nursing him and Gavin hasn’t shown any indication of wanting to wean. Although he has increased his intake of other fluids – most especially milk and water at night – he still asks for the breast straight after. Sometimes I am able to get him back to sleep without having to nurse him, other times, he still needs to suckle to get back to sleep. I’ll usually let him decide and follow his lead.
Recently, something happened and I haven’t quite figured out what to make of it. Gavin woke up in the middle of the night and I offered him milk. After drinking the milk, he seemed ready to fall back to sleep. Then, to my surprise, he started crying. His eyes were closed so I wasn’t sure if he was awake or asleep.
At this point, I think I should add that Gavin’s word for breast milk is “nen nen” – which is the Chinese word for breast milk.
Gavin continued crying and saying, “I don’t like nen nen, I don’t want nen nen any more.” He kept saying it over and over while crying. I tried to calm and said he didn’t have to have it if he didn’t want it, but he just kept crying. Finally, I took a different approach and asked if he wanted nen nen. To my surprise, he nodded. I offered him my breast and he fell asleep almost immediately after latching on.
Since then, there have been a second incident when Gavin told me quite specifically that he didn’t want nen nen any more. However, the strange thing is that he seems quite ambivalent about it. Although he insists he doesn’t want it, everything about his actions still indicates he wants it. And if I offer him my breast, he’ll take it.
Being new to this whole nursing during pregnancy experience and personally knowing only one other mother who has done this before me, I haven’t got much to go on regarding the whole psychology of how this is affecting Gavin. Clearly he seems upset by the changes in my milk production, but yet reluctant to give it nursing completely.
Although I know my milk production has decreased in quantity from the fact that Gavin gulps down milk in the middle of the night like a traveler drinking water in the Sahara desert, I think something else has changed recently. Very likely, my breasts have shifted from milk production to colostrum which is something that is supposed to happen around about the fifth month of pregnancy – or so I read somewhere. Perhaps that is what has been bothering Gavin?
During the first trimester, nursing Gavin was a little sensitive, but hardly what I would describe as within the realm of pain. Lately, however, nursing has begun to hurt a little more. Gavin also seems to be making a nasty habit of biting my nipple in his sleep. I suspect this frustration must be due to the lack of breast milk and the difficulty of extracting the colostrum.
I’m still trying to figure out how to deal with this information and what I can do to lessen the emotional disturbance it seems to be giving Gavin. I have asked him if he wants to stop nursing and he doesn’t. I don’t want to wean him because it seems he still really wants the comfort of nursing. I guess, we’ll just keep going and see what else develops.
In the meantime, if you’re a mother who has breastfed a toddler through your pregnancy, feel free to share your experiences in the comments below. I think I could do with some additional thoughts on the matter right about now. This isn’t exactly the sort of information that is easy to google.