Sunday, June 14, 2009

project wean...

s.o.s., please, somebody help me...

i have so much to blog about, but i'm going to blog about this first.
project wean has begun...
but i need all you veteran wean-ers (ha ha) out there to give me some advice.

i've nursed E all along...she has had one bottle at lunch time which i pumped.
this last week, i pumped all feedings except the night-time feeding and added/mixed in 2-3 ounces of whole milk on each feeding.

my questions are these:
1. should i still be giving her a bottle at every feeding? (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Bedtime)
2. if yes, when do i stop that?
3. if no, do i get rid of one feeding per day or per week or??
4. how much milk should she be getting now?
5. what are some of your favorite foods to give your little weaned one?

oh man, i've been so overwhelmed with this weaning process. because:
a. it hurts
b. i'm torn..i'm so ready...but a teensy weensy bit sad about it too. she's really not a baby anymore. sigh.
c. i want to make sure that i am giving her what she needs...but not making her attached/forming bad habits so that at 2 years old i'm the one with the kid that has separation anxiety from her bottle.

ahhh, so it's obvious i need your help :)

just a note: both M and i have milk allergies. i'm lactose-intolerant, and M is allergic to the proteins. this has made me extra-cautious/slow in the weaning process. this is also why i am hesitant to just give her 8 ounces of whole milk and wean cold turkey....

wow. no one can prepare you for all these crazy details of parenting, huh? i guess on-the-job-training really is best :)

thank you in advance for all your help and wisdom. how i love you, my blogging bff's!


The Fredy Family said...

Fortunatly for me my little gut stopped himself cold turkey at 9 1/2 months. It was sad but he didn't want to nurse anymore. I think it was easier that way. One week before turning one he refused to drink formula any more so on to whole milk he went. I was told that they get 24-32oz a day of dairy either in the form of milk, cheese, yogort, etc. My son loves water so that helped also. What about trying lactaid whole milk since you have the allergies in your family. At least you can get her on to milk and then introduce regular milk slowly.

As far as the whole how often do I give her a bottle question, they will wean them selves off slowly too with eating more food. Just take it day by day.

For the bottle weaning I introduced sippy cups with straws and had him use them at least once a day. At 14 months my ped. said it was time to start weaning from the bottle. I said ok and from that moment he never got another bottle. But he was used the straw cups also so he already knew what to do with it. He never asked for one again. Out of site out of mind.

yobaby yogurt, organic white cheddar cheese from trader joe's, gerber puffs, and frozen blueberries were all good snacks.

Sorry for the long comment!

Hilary said...

I have no advice to give, but just wanted to tell you how much I enjoy reading your blog!!! Every time I see you updated, it makes me smile. We sure miss our Chapman friends! When are you guys off to the west coast? I am coming home a couple of times this summer and would LOVE to see you! Love ya.

Mat and Brooke said...

I'm no expert, but I have learned, first of all, that all children are different and will do things at their own pace. If E isn't ready to stop nursing, or if you're fine pumping for awhile longer still, I'd say do it because it's obviously working :) She'll stop soon enough!
I never made it past six months with either one of my first two kids and I'm not nursing my third at all. I struggled a lot with having a big enough milk supply-- so I give you props for making it so long!
By the way, Savanna is a total milk lover so she started drinking it right out of a cup when she turned one...but Easton doesn't like it as much and the only way I could get him to drink it was warm in a bottle. I seriously gave it to him that way until he was two years old. I finally stopped doing that but he hardly ever drinks milk now; so that's why I say do whatever seems to work best and don't worry about what others think :)
Good luck to you! She's totally adorable. I love it when you put new pictures of her up on your blog! Miss you!

p.s my kids love frozen peas in a baggie!

ed and kelli said...

props to you marce for even nursing this long.. i already dream of the day i will stop:) i will be lucky if i last till 6 months! but i know that my sister did it for 11 months and about a month before just gradually introduced a bottle (like just before bed) and her daughter didn't get attatched to the bottle..and i think she only got that bottle for a few months.. then she just had normal meals during the day with milk or juice in a sippy cup. don't know if that helps, but i haven't reached the wean-er stage:)

JCW said...

No bottles after a year. Start her with sippy cups and offer them throughout the day, not necessarily with a meal. In fact it's better not to fill their tummies with liquid while they're trying to eat.

Use water or whole milk and let her practice, it might take a month or longer before she gets it. If you start bottles now it will just be another transition to go through...she's ready for a sippy cup and they make them for one year olds. If she rejects the milk at first and you're worried about calcium, fill in her diet with cheese/yogurts/cottage cheese. Fruits and other things have a lot of water in them to keep her hydrated so if she's not drinking a ton from a sippy cup, you can keep her hydrated other ways while she adjust to the drinking the sippy cup. But keep offering it!!

As far as weening, leave and see if someone else can put her down for her nap if you usually nurse her then. Make sure her belly is full from meals before she goes down so she's not hungry and wanting to nurse.

My baby girl was tough to wean (I nursed her until about 14 months)and when I weaned her I only nursed her at night and in the morning and then only at night. And then I cried my eyes out when one night she went in her crib and didn't mind not nursing. It will be harder on you than her when the time is right! But then you get your body back : )

Our pediatrician said TOO much milk is actually NOT good for toddlers, calcium inhibits iron absorption. Iron is important for good brain development too-that's why all the cereals and formulas add it. For a while Natalie would take less than a cup of milk a day but I would give her cheese and other things. It's okay if they don't like milk at first as they're weaning, they'll gradually get more and more used to it.

I know it's hard, good luck!

Amber said...

Agree with JCW, switch to sippy. They have ones with softer spouts that new users like.

As far as your hurting, don't stop pumping cold turkey. Pump a teeny bit every time you feel full, just to relieve the pressure. Your milk will stop soon.

Don't feel guilt about weaning; you're teaching your daughter a necessary skill in life, drinking like a big girl. And she knows you love her. You're doing great!

Jylaire said...

I cried and cried when I weaned my kiddos, and they were around 13 months. I just started cutting out feedings; like one a week for a while, then was just down to once a day; I think it was the evening feeding for one, and the morning for another. My kids never took a bottle, so I just went straight for the sippy cup, and it worked out just fine. My kids didn't take to milk right away, so I just made sure they were hydrated with lots of water, and that they ate lots of dairy products. The whole weaning process was way easier on my kiddos than it was one me! They adjust so well at that age! You'll be great. Just expect some tears...I thought it would get easier as each kid did it, and I swear my second was even harder! Good luck!

Linda said...

Interesting that you did not have any problems with milk tolerance as a child. This problem did not appear until your YW years. I say follow your own gut feelings... and when in doubt call your pediatrician. They were always so helpful to me.
I am sure Ellie will do great.
Miss you. Love, MOM
P.S Tu Papa tiene su llamada el Jueves. Te llamo entonces conlos resultados.Ora por el?

melissa said...

agree with JWC-you can wean straight to sippies now if you want. My girl didn't wean till 16 months though. We dropped feedings first during the day, then a morning one, and the last one to go was before bed. The ones during the day are easier to replace with food/distractions. And also, my girl didn't really like milk, but that's okay if you're doing yogurt, cheese, etc... whatever works for her and you. umm, otherwise, good luck! I found it was just a feel-it-out event.

melissa said...

oh, and for how often to drop feedings, it's good to drop one feeding and give your LO a few days to adjust (I don't remember what people say-maybe 3-5 days?). Good luck!

Lynne said...

You don't really need to wean her to a bottle because she is old enough to drink from a sippy cup. she was doing really well with that the other day. You have done a good thing by not nursing her to sleep. I like the way the you nurse her when she wakes up. So you can pretty much eliminate the bottle entirely. When she wakes up just give her lunch in her high chair and then some juice or milk in a cup. I totally understand your worry about the milk issues. You could give her formula in a cup for a few more months and then try regular milk again. Just watch her and see how she reacts to dairy products. If she is lactose intolerant she will have pretty painful stomach pains and the same is true if she has what Mike has. She will cry really hard and be pretty much inconsolable. That kind of reaction starts about 30 minutes after having dairy products and lasts for several hours. The other indicator is SEVERE diaper rash. Good luck. You are doing great. Take a deep breath. She is an adorable, happy, healthy, energetic little girl. You two have managed her very well.

Richardson said...

So, This is what my doc told me. Once they are drinking whole milk instead of breast milk or formula it is no longer a supplement for food. Milk is just a drink and a good source of calcium and a few extra calories. So make she still eats a full meal with her milk. At a year I started giving James milk in a sippy for breakfast and before bedtime. For lunch I usually try to give him something else to drink. Usually water. So, my point is milk is not her main source of calories anymore. Regular food should be. Oh ya, I didn't do it cold turkey. I transitioned into giving him milk just in the morning and at night. It's still his routin.

Amy said...

I am not a mom, so I have no 1st hand experience...

But with my sister's kids, especially Reef- he drinks from a sippy cup most of the time and he eats a lot of baby foods... but he loves mushed avocadoes, he sucks on grapes in those little net things, he eats mashed potatoes, applesauce- that kind of thing.

I know a girl who has a baby that is allergic to milk so they have her on soy milk and she does just fine.

But- when in doubt as the pediatrician and go with your gut. Mother's instinct is always best, right?