Five Times and Back Again: A Journal of a Sixth Pregnancy (Vol. 4)

Last week I promised I’d write something about nursing while pregnant… I’m in this moment really floundering at coming up with anything positive about it!! It’s been one of those days where I’m tapped out, touched out, and done.. Logically I know there are MANY benefits to nursing while pregnant. It keeps your little one connected and tandem nursing is an AMAZING bonding experience. With as young as my Marah is still she really needs that and so do I as a parenting tool. What starts to happen, though, is your milk dries up inevitably (though not for every woman) and you go through a spurt of dry nursing. That’s the uncomfortable part. It doesn’t hurt necessarily (at least for me) but it sure makes my skin crawl at times. I’m sure that’s a biological thing as your body and brain make way for the new baby/life you will be sustaining.

Sage tuckered out from her 3rd birthday festivities.

When I nursed Sage through Marah’s pregnancy it was a pretty rough ride, her latch was ALWAYS horrid and while it normally didn’t bother me much at all while pregnant I had to set limits. She was old enough (just over 2) to understand that Mama needed some boundaries. She’s the only baby that I nightweaned, she’s the only one that I told that Mama’s boobies were tired like the sun and could only give her milkies when the sun was up (which actually led to waking at the crack of dawn for a few weeks), she’s also the only one (thus far) that nursed right up to her 4th birthday! (that’s when I gently said… okay, I think we’re done..)

Tandem nursing 3 year old Sage and newborn Marah

This time around I was really quite worried about going through the same hell I went through last time but was pleasantly surprised when I made it through the first trimester and I still had abundant milk. If Marah had anything going for her it was her MOST beautiful latch, it really kept things flowing… sadly though eventually hormones take over and there’s not much you can do about it. There’s no herb, supplement, food in the world that will keep an abundant supply while pregnant. Eventually it will dry up and then comes the dry nursing. EEK!

Sleepy baby

I’ve been trying to capture more pictures of nursing Marah because when I look at them, it makes me feel/see the good parts and removes the negative emotions I have associated with the dry nursing. She looks like a beautifully contented, sweet baby girl and I truly can’t wait to nurse her and another sweet little one.  I’ve been so grateful that I’ve had other women in my life to share my experiences with who have shared the good and not so good of nursing while pregnant and tandem nursing. It’s not an easy ride but it is TOTALLY worth it in the end… I remind myself to take it one day at a time and try not to think too far ahead with it. It’s easier mentally that way.

Sweet little nursling, 24 weeks pregnant nursing 17 mos old

What Natural Parenting Looks Like With a Teen

This is my 15 year old daughter.

She no longer co-sleeps with us, but she will often lovingly let her younger siblings climb into bed with her for the night.

She no longer lets me carry her everywhere, and I am pretty sure we would both fall over in a heap of giggles if I tried.  But she does lay her head in my lap when she has had a bad day and let me stroke her hair while she tells me what has been bothering her.

She is no longer breastfed, and I no longer get to decide her meals for her.  She is, however, a wonderful cook and has a wealth of nutritional knowledge.  She makes the best veggie omelet you will ever eat.

She learned to read long ago, but some days she still likes to listen in while I read to the younger ones.  Often I will find her cuddled in a chair reading to her little brother or sister.

She doesn’t always decide to do what I would like for her to do, but she almost always asks for my opinion.

I no longer get to kiss her boo-boos better, but she knows how to administer first aid and has been a great help to her friends when others would have panicked.

I no longer can be the sole determining factor in how much television she watches or what shows she views, but she will tell you that she finds t.v. boring.

I don’t get to decide the clothes she wears, but I find I like most of her choices and she balks at the idea of buying something just because “everyone” is wearing it.

We still play, but the games have changed.  We traded Chutes & Ladders for Scattergories and Trivial Pursuit long ago.

We still sing together, but the songs are more complex, and sometimes we cry together over a song with sad lyrics, or laugh when something is silly.

We still don’t agree on everything, and we never will.  We are both very comfortable with that fact.

We fight, we cry, we dance, we bake, we laugh, we learn from each other.

This is my daughter, and her age will never change that.

~ Sasha

*Originally posted as a guest post at The Peaceful Housewife that was run by one of the nicest women you will ever meet, who now has a shop by the same name!  The Peaceful Housewife is also one of our sponsors for April 2012 check out her link over on the side bar to find some GREAT mama-made environmentally-friendly products for yourself and your home.