by Jennifer on December 11, 2013

I have a headache and I’m sleep-deprived but my “baby” is almost three years old.

What could be wrong, you ask?

My son has the habit of wanting to nurse all night long.  ALL. NIGHT. LONG.  After nearly three years, you would think I would be used to it and to a certain extent I am. But I think even a sound sleeper would wake up to tiny, cold hands fumbling with her nightshirt and grumbling in the dark.

And sometimes I just want to sleep.  And sleep for a good, long stretch.

I try to tell myself to enjoy this time because a year from now, things will be different and I will wish to be awoken by  little creeping toddler fingers on my chest…several times a night.

But I remember telling myself that exact same thing the year before that.  And the one before that.

Sometimes nursing him is my favorite thing in the world.  I love the quiet time to examine his flawless skin and beautiful eyes and his gentleness.

And sometimes I’m ready for it to be over.  But as soon as I say that, my body reacts and the voice in my head says “No!  Don’t say that!  You’ll eat your words.”  Blasphemy.

But sometimes I’m just tired and really want a night of uninterrupted sleep.  I’m not even sure I’m capable of that at this point.  I’ve spent every night with him for his almost three years (except for the three I was in the hospital for surgery and we all know hospital sleep is never uninterrupted).

I love him so much and I love the bond we have and I know it will end all too soon.  And I love how much he loves it too.  My oldest was fed formula so I never understood the attachment babies can have to nursing.  It’s safe to say S would choose to nurse over any other activity or food.

And I don’t want to resent these moments…but I’m tired.

Really tired.

And I’m only nearing the end of writing this and already I have that feeling in my stomach.  The one that says I shouldn’t say these things.  I should be grateful for every moment.  I should just trash this post because somehow saying I’m tired of it on occasion may cause him to stop and then think how sad I will be to see this time end.

I will be sad…but well rested.

And I am grateful for this time.  But gratitude is so  much more difficult when you’re freakin’ tired.

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that cynking feeling December 11, 2013 at 10:05 am

I understand tired. Not for the same reasons, but I get it. I’m sure all parents do. Still, is the lack of sleep affecting your health? Even though you may miss that closeness, is it maybe time to stop so that you can take care of you? If you aren’t getting enough sleep, the consequences could be more seriousness than the results of weaning.
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Jack December 11, 2013 at 10:56 am

It is bittersweet watching our kids grow up. Some of it is so very cool and then there are those times where you just want to stop the clock.
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Jen December 11, 2013 at 12:48 pm

I think every day about how much the babies are growing and find myself missing my oldest’s horribly colicky baby moments which is nuts because it was BAAAAADD. Being tired is no fun though.. you sound like a strong lady. I’m sure you’ll get through it. :)

Ben @ DadoftheDecade December 12, 2013 at 9:11 am

Lots of us posting these future-looking posts this week! I think you’re feeling something every parent feels. Good on you for being able to admit how hard it can be!
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Kianwi December 12, 2013 at 9:47 am

Okay, this is sooo not the same at all, but I have three cats that constantly jump in and out of my bed all night long. I am a light sleeper, so they wake me up much of the time. I am so tired sometimes, but when I think about locking them out of my room (not that it would do any good, they would scratch at the door) I feel bad, because I love to snuggle with them when they are in the bed.

Don’t worry, you’ll be able to sleep all you want when he gets to be a teenager, ha ha :) Or, maybe not, because then you’ll be waiting up for him to come home!

Samantha Shanley December 12, 2013 at 1:11 pm

I hear you. Most of us parents are trying to balance that line between gratitude and–dare I say it?–resentment. You’ll keep moving forward, and you’ll end up in the right place for both of you.

Joe (Kellie's World) December 12, 2013 at 5:17 pm

Did you know that in some traditional societies mothers let their children nurse on demand for as much as 4 years? My nipples get sore just thinking about that.
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Karen P December 12, 2013 at 6:58 pm

When the tiredness fades, what will remain are the memories of that unique bond that only a mother can have with her child. How precious!

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