Got milk Mommy?!
In December 2009 I was blessed with my 4th (and final) son. I remember doctors and nurses coming in to check on me and L and commenting how baby 4 would be a piece of cake for me since I had 3 others at home. You must have this baby thing down they would say with a smile. I don’t know if it was the Perocet (L was c-section #3), pain or the lack of sleep but I actually believed those people and thought I did have this baby thing down.
NEVER have I been so wrong about something!! Not only did I NOT have the baby thing down, I seemed to have forgotten everything I had learned with my 3 previous kids.
L was a high maintenance baby from the minute he came out. Jaundiced he was confined to the nursery to sleep under the yellow light, only to come by and visit mommy for a bottle every 3-4 hours. The formula the nurses started him off on didn’t go over well so we switched on day 2.
It wasnt any easier when we came home. For the first 2 weeks we were at the pediatrician every 2 days for blood work and at 6 weeks L developed a pyloric stenosis which required surgery and a 4 day hospital stay.
By this point sleep deprivation was an understatement for what I was feeling. I had to do something to function and take care of the other 3 kids. It started off slowly, letting L sleep with me in bed, rocking him to sleep or making sure he always had a binky nearby (even buying every brand of binky sold at Target until we found one L liked).
The months went on and gradually L became more self-sufficient. On his first birthday he was walking and had given up baby food in a jar. He still kept a tight grip on his bottle and binky though. It’s ok, he’s still a baby I would tell my mom. At his 18-month check-up the doctor asked me if we had done away with the bottle. Almost I said ignoring the look she gave me. Do it soon, she advised.
Well here we are at 2 years 2 months old and L still has not bid farewell to his beloved bottle. L goes into the fridge and brings the gallon of milk to me and even knows to look in the dishwasher for a clean bottle if there are none on the counter. I know the time has come, once a child can practically pour his own bottle it is time to say good-bye.
The problem is that I just don’t know if I can break L of his bottle addiction. I have done it 3 other times and it was pretty painless, unless you count M screaming at the top of the stairs for 4 nights straight, but things are always a bit harder with L. He has a temper like no other child I have seen and can not be easily distracted. Last night he cried for over a half hour after I refused to give him a bottle before dinner.
I almost gave in several times, I knew that one little bottle would make it all better. L would be happy and I would be able to finish dinner in peace (relatively speaking). L eventually passed out on the couch (lack of a nap will do that to a 2yo). He looked so cute all cuddled on the couch, even the husband commented that I should have just given him a bottle, it’s not like he will start school with a bottle in his lunch box. he said.
I know it is time for L to give up his bottle and I know it is my job to help him do this. I just don’t know if I am ready for the fight. I will keep you posted on our progress.