I weaned my first daughter just before her second birthday, mainly because nursing was affecting my fertility. (I conceived the month I weaned.) Since my second baby’s birth, my daughter, now 3, has asked to nurse a few times at bedtime. I always nonchalantly give her the green light, knowing she just wants to feel like a baby again sometimes. And, really, a 3-year-old still is very much a baby.
One evening a few months ago we were cuddling at bedtime. The baby was already asleep. My oldest daughter’s room was dark and she curled close to me and began nursing. I expected her to stop right away and to giggle and to say something like, “I’m a big girl. Only babies nurse” as she had always done in the past.
Instead, for a brief moment, her preschooler defiance and indpendence vanished, and she was my needy baby again, finding comfort and nourishment at my breast. It was a beautiful moment.
It was also funny. When she finished, she asked me if I’d ever had breastmilk soup. I said I hadn’t. She paused for a moment and then said, “I bet it would be ‘weally’ good.”