I type "extended" in quotes because it seems a bit silly that nursing past a year is even considered extended. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics,
"It is recommended that breastfeeding continue for at least 12 months, and thereafter for as long as mutually desired"Hear that? AT LEAST 12 months. As in minimum. Why on earth would exceeding the very minimal recommendation be considered extended?
I didn't necessarily plan on breastfeeding past 1 year. It just happened. Which is totally crazy considering what a struggle I had with breastfeeding to begin with. It has not been an easy road, yet, at the same time, it feels like the right thing to continue with. I can't argue with the fact that C has been incredibly healthy through his first year of life, and with the risk of jinxing it: he's not had a single ear infection.
In the months leading up to C's first birthday, I thought about starting the weaning process, but nursing was just working for us...why change something that was going so well? Last week was the first time that a hint of C naturally weaning came into the picture. He's been eating more and more real food and at daycare he just started to seem uninterested in his lunch-time bottle. So I told them to go ahead and skip it. I brought the extra bottle the next day just in case he seemed to need it, but he transitioned to 2 bottles at daycare instead of the usual 3 like it was nothing. And in doing so, I transitioned down to two pumping sessions a day at work instead of 3.
He's been drinking some whole, organic, cow's milk from a sippy cup too. The problem is that he loves to just play with the sippy cup, so he mostly just gets milk all over the place. It's a balance that we're figuring out, but not stressing about.
If there's one trait of mine that I will totally own and proudly proclaim, it's my ability to just. be. mellow.
It's not often that I stress out. About anything. I'm a go-with-the-flow, easy-going gal. Which is probably why I worked full-time all the way up until the day before my due-date and then two days after my due date I woke up and casually declared, "I think I'm going to have a baby today". And then I did. Seriously, it happened just like that.
So we're going to continue breastfeeding for now. For how long? We'll just take it a day at a time and figure it out as we go!