Well, it finally happened: My 22-month-old is officially weaned. It was a rough process, and we hit a few roadblocks along the way. But the deed is done.
Now that my milk is dried up and I no longer have someone attempting to lift up my shirt every time I sit down, here are 5 things that surprised me after I weaned my toddler:
1) Holy vaginal wetness. Sorry, TMI, I know. But seriously. Because of a decrease in estrogen, breastfeeding generally suppresses ovulation (or it least it did for me,) which can also lead to vaginal dryness -- something I had apparently gotten used to. So yeah. There's no more dryness down there, for sure.
(Calm down, it's a photo of water flowing through rocks.)
2) Oh, hello there, deflated bags of skin. My post-nursing breasts throw me for a loop every single time I wean. On one hand, being small-chested is definitely an advantage for this marathon-running mama. (Less bouncing and chafing, for sure.) On the other hand, I should probably invest in some new bras that actually fit me. And I look like a 12-year-old.
3) I'm less annoyed by my toddler. Every time I sat down on the couch, my daughter would take it as her cue to run over to me and lift up my shirt to nurse. You know, just because my boobs were there and easily accessible. And before I finally weaned her, she had taken to suckling all night long while lying across my body. Ugh. With breastfeeding behind us, let's just say I'm waayyy less touched-out these days.
4) And yet, the nipple twiddling continues. It's true that my toddler no longer tries to nurse. However, when she's tired she sometimes grabs for a nipple to absentmindedly twiddle. Weirdo.
5) It's liberating AF to have my body back. I was totally ready to be done breastfeeding my third child. Yet, a part of me was still sad this special relationship would be coming to an end. With that said, there's a definitely a sense of freedom that comes with no longer growing or feeding a child with my body. It's just me now, no longer physically sharing myself with another person. And it's glorious.
Images by iStock, Michelle Stein
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