We have lots to celebrate this week with our baby turning 12 months. My husband and I are celebrating having survived the last 12 months of parenting (though we know the harder parts are yet to be experienced and coming up!). I’m also celebrating having made the one year mark in breastfeeding!
There were definitely times I did not think my milk supply would keep up. It has been a long and often hard journey of pumping a few times a day (including once in the middle of the night) especially in the latter months as baby’s intake of solids has increased and breastfeeding sessions dropped correspondingly. But it has all been worth it! I think there is definitely a sense of empowerment in achieving something that you did not think might be possible, and I’m extremely thankful we’ve been able to come this far!
As I now let up in my pumping, I am sad that baby and I will soon not be able to share these sweet bonding times together. I’ll always be grateful for these moments together though. It’s a strange feeling as well to suddenly realize that I won’t be needing that pumping machine for very much longer. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding till 6 months of age, and then continued breastfeeding with appropriate complementary foods up till 2 years of age or beyond. So though I’m winding down on my breastfeeding, you can keep breastfeeding for as long as you and baby desire!