There are times when I just don't want to nurse Chase. Nursing is hard work. It takes a lot of time; and space. He doesn't just fit in my lap in a chair anymore. We have to get up and move to the bed where its most comfortable for us. Chase is the kind of nursling that can get into moods where he regresses to the infant days. Before any action, must have milk. After any action, must have milk. It's tiring. And taxing on my body. Keeping up my water intake takes time and lots of mental checking of my physical state. Cotton mouth? Better drink some water. Stabbing pain in my head when nursing, better drink more water NOW. Add to this another toddler that wants milk every time his big brother has milk and you get a whole lot of uncoordinated flailing little hands, accompanied with ear splitting screams.
Why do it if it's such a hassle?
Because my kids need it. Simple as that. Would I give anything in the world to have Daddy nurse them for a while? ABSOLUTELY. But that's not the way nature intended. So I buck up and do the thing that only I can do. Sure, I can wean them both. They are beyond the minimum breast feeding ages that the various health organizations recommend. Contrary to what we all want to believe, weaning won't absolve me of any responsibility. It will only take away a very valuable tool for soothing just about any situation. They will still scream and resist diaper changes, cry when they get hurt, cry when they fight, have emotional break downs because the internet isn't working and we can't watch Umizoomi videos. And hugs don't work nearly as well as a good nursing session.
Do you enjoy torturing yourself?
I write a lot about how people need to make decisions for themselves, work extremely hard, and get off the beaten path. Inevitably, people ask about normal people or people who don't have all the advantages that I have. Let me address that.
Any struggle I've had in my life is a joke. I was born into a great family who never had to worry about putting a roof over my head or food on my plate. I felt (and feel) loved by every member of my family, from my great grandparents down to my siblings. Any danger I've ever been in in my entire life was danger that I willingly put myself into. I was in good schools, had great friends, and was supported by everyone I knew. I've taken medicine once in my life, and it was 15 years ago for strep throat. I have had it incredibly easy.
The challenges in my life have been created by me. I have the incredible privilege to pick goals, set my own timetable, and then try to reach them. I don't have to worry about food or shelter or... really anything. So although I do try to challenge myself and work extremely hard, I am always completely aware that the level of challenge and effort I put out will never reach what some people deal with on a daily basis.
I watched a documentary called Inocente last week, and it made me cry. It's about a homeless teenage girl named Inocente. She was born into a destitute illegally immigrated family with an abusive alcoholic father. Her father beat both her and her mother. They left and became homeless. Her mother was so desperate that she tried to convince Inocente to jump off a bridge and commit suicide with her. Inocente lives by herself, in the park or in shelters, and spends every last free minute she has painting. Her biggest dream in life is to get married and have a house.