Celebrating Weaning

A few days ago, there was a Carnival Of Weaning. (Click on the link and scroll down for all the entries.) True to form, I didn't think of an article until... now. See, when the call came out, I shrugged it off because I really feel like I have said all I want to or need about weaning. I've breastfed three children beyond a year. I bottle fed one from eight months until 21 months. When it was time to wean them from the breast or bottle, we did it with love and respect, following their cues and our (mine, honestly) bodily cues and desires.

Cole has been weaned for about two months. I knew he would likely wean while we were in Washington for a trip. When I got home, he nursed. I was surprised, thinking he would forget but, given his launch into "nursing lift-off" (aka, the nursing position) and his insistence on nursing when I sat in my office chair, apparently, he had not.

The next day, he was insistent that I nurse him when I was sitting down. I tried, but it was like nursing him with a tongue tie. I heard clicking and he wasn't drawing the nipple back into his mouth. We tried a couple more times but it really hurt. He was done.

I am a little sad that this time in my life has come to an end. I bought some new bras, of course, but Adam and I did something else to mark the end of the breastfeeding and baby stage: we registered to become bone marrow donors.

I know, right? I am an organ donor; it says so on my drivers licence. I haven't been able to donate blood in forever since I have been pregnant or nursing. When the bone marrow drive came to our parish, it was almost too easy to sign up.

I was shocked when Adam agreed to do it. My hospital, needle AND blood phobic husband willingly have a needle shoved in his arm (if asked)? Get the smelling salts! I made up promise up and down that he would agree to donate if called. I didn't want him to be just a name on the file. He agreed.

Donating is super simple. We had to read through a form and then fill one out, paying special attention to the ethnic backgrounds. They looooved me since I have the most boring health history evah and I have a variety of ethnic backgrounds. (My dad jokes that my siblings and I are mutts and in this case, being a mutt is good!) Then we swabbed the inside of our cheeks for DNA and that was that.

Easy peasey lemon squeezey as Camille says.

Will they call me? I don't know. Will I donate if they need me? Likely, yes. Unless something else is going on that would make it too much of a hardship on my family for my to donate at that time, I will do it. I've always had it in my heart to be an organ or bone marrow donor and I am happy I am at a point in my life where I can consider it. My body has spent years giving life to and nourishing my children; perhaps I can help someone else too.