December 19, 2009

Hello Kitty, Goodbye Nursing

Well, it's time to wean. And, no, I'm not referring to weaning my 10-month old. That wonderful and successful transition actually occurred two weeks ago; finally, after almost four continuous years of a constant flow of being pregnant and nursing, both at the same time, then nursing again, my body is finally now my own. No, the weaning I am talking about here involves my 2YO who in watching me nurse my son, decided that when her little baby, "Kitty Kat" (a jumbo sized Hello Kitty) was hungry the ONLY practical solution was to also attempt to nurse.

The first day I saw it, I, indeed, did a double take. I had just finished nursing my baby boy and walked into my bedroom to find little-toddler-girl sitting on my bed and staring off at the wall with her shirt half up and her gargantuan Hello Kitty doll being pressed up against her chest. "What are you doing?" I asked thinking, surely this isn't what I think it is. "I nursing Kitty Kat!" She proudly declared ever so matter-of-factly and looked back at the wall to continue focusing on feeding.  "Oh," I said, and turned away so she wouldn't see my jaw drop as I tried to hold in a chuckle. This was an imitation I didn't expect.  I just assumed that little girls feed their babies a bottle, not thinking that she never saw us feed baby boy one.  Though, it was quite intriguing to me that of ALL the dolls she had to choose, she overlooked the authentic looking little baby girl and instead choses a white, hairy, not to mention LARGE, Hello Kitty.

And how do you respond to that? I facebooked about it in contemplating that very question.  One friend suggested I get her her own boppy pillow, and I even considered a nursing cover.  What better than to embrace my toddler imitating what really is a beautiful and natural and healthy gift we can offer our children.

But, all things are perfect in their own time. And today showed that it just might be time for weaning: Earlier, as Daddy was playing with 2YO in her princess tent, they were laughing and singing when she  abruptly pauses and I guess decided that it was time to nurse Kitty Kat.  Leave it to a daddy to be completely oblivious to the hunger cry of a baby--even if the cry was silently imagined by a toddler and the baby a stuffed cat! So, right in front of him, she lifts her shirt and shoves the white, plump animal up to her chest to "nurse." I'm in the bedroom getting ready when hubby comes in and tells me that it was a hilarious but awkward daddy moment in seeing your little baby girl attempt to nurse her cat.  And that's when the lightbulb went off for me, as Oprah would call it, an "Ah-ha" moment: It's time to teach little-toddler-girl how to wean Hello kitty. After all, how would this cute imitation look if it happened in the middle of Target, at church, dance class etc.

Thankfully, I have already bought 2YO girl a baby doll feeding kit for Christmas. All that's left is a short and sweet conversation about how now that Kitty Kat is older, she needs more nutrients from the bottle and even food, just like her baby brother.  It's ever so sweet that my 2-year-old is following in my footsteps--though I must admit, I never thought I'd have to teach my daughter to wean of all things, her stuffed cat. Maybe she and I can have a weaning tea-party to celebrate, during which we can both declare: Hello Kitty, Goodbye nursing.

Posted by Laura

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