It’s official I have been breastfeeding Aoife for 2 years and it is going to continue until who knows when! I am very much a believer in following a child’s lead in their development and needs. I am encouraged to do so within my professional practice at work (working with nursery age children) so it’s only logical I do it at home!
I know a fair few of you will be thinking “but why?”. A lot of my friends and acquaintances that breastfed babies born around the same time as Aoife, stopped a while ago, although I do know a fair few friends and acquaintances that continued until at least 2 years or are in the same boat with feeding whilst pregnant.
Firstly, lets look at some facts. Most health organisations support feeding until 2 years and beyond! The UK’s NHS service supports the World Health Organisation‘s statement that “WHO recommends mothers worldwide to exclusively breastfeed infants for the first six months to achieve optimal growth, development and health. Thereafter, they should be given nutritious complementary foods and continue breastfeeding up to the age of two years or beyond”. Another interesting source of information relating the WHO’s stance on breastfeeding is this infant and young child feeding
“Extended” breastfeeding in today’s mainstream media is looked upon mostly (in my opinion) in a negative light. Why? I do not know because first and foremost there are only two people involved in a breastfeeding relationship and that is the child and the mother. I am incredibly lucky in the fact that Luke is very supportive of me feeding Aoife still. Just to clarify aswell toddlers don’t tend to feed as often as newborns… Aoife has between 3 – 6 feeds in a 24 hour period depending on whether I am at work and what sort of mood she is in!
I think I am in it for the long haul with my beautiful girl! Baby number 2 is due to arrive in February and i’ll begin another breastfeeding relationship but that doesn’t bother me if anything I look forward to the bond the three of us will develop and having Aoife’s help with engorgement when my milk comes in!
Thanks for reading!