I have finally bitten the bullet, or to put it more accurately the bullet has bitten me. I have stopped breastfeeding the baby. It's not that I have any hard and fast rules on breastfeeding. It's just that I have been too knackered to stop. It seemed easier to keep going and at least get some sleep as I knew he was going to protest, and loudly. Plus there was always a reason to keep going, eg, colds. Double plus I was waiting for that epiphany mentioned in all the books where the baby lets you know that they are no longer interested in breastfeeding. After four children I have realised that either this moment never comes or I am really bad at reading the signs.
In any event, I decided this weekend was the right time since he has begun to bite. I have had various chats with him about being a big boy. This worked with daughter one. The baby does not seem convinced at all. He does want to be big so he can be independent. He is already able to open the back door with the keys [perched, of course, on a rocking chair. Why do babies make things so much more hazardous than they need be?], even though half the key is trapped in the lock because the key broke eons ago. He has been studying my driving habits and appears to know how the gearstick works. He has the iphone totally sussed. However, he does not appear to associate independence with breastfeeding.
So Saturday dawned and I decided to take action. I managed to keep him up a bit later than usual and then he fell asleep with me just singing to him. So far so good. Daughter one made a special plea before going to bed. "It's my last night of school holidays when I can sleep in. Can you stop anyone making a big noise so I can sleep in? Sleep is my favourite activity," she said. I said I would do my best.
Of course, the baby woke up about two hours later and yelled, but even then he eventually got to sleep by being rocked and we were downstairs still, slumped in front of the King's Speech, which I remember the first five minutes of before I succumbed to slumber. One day I may stay awake for the entire film. During the night, however, the baby woke several times and it was like struggling with Goliath. He screamed and screamed. Very little sleep was had, but I emerged victorious, if with a slightly inflated and throbbing chest.
Meanwhile, he woke up both daughters two and three very early and daughter two knocked the wedding photo off the wall, yelled at her sister and generally significant levels of noise were made. Daughter one emerged around 10am looking slightly peeved. "Good night?" I inquired.