So, if you are reading the sleep forum too, you probably think I'm a nut job who is overly stressed out about all things parenting. You are probably right and I am really sorry to just keep asking questions. I spent so much time and energy learning about BFing the first year that now I feel like I'm back at square one--I don't have a clue about BFing past the first year, other than I am doing it.
LO will be 1 year on Monday (the 3rd). I am super proud of making it this long and am so happy to continue. We've really grown to love our BFing relationship and I really look forward to our snuggle/nursing times.
I understand that nursing past a year looks different for everyone and I am okay with that. I just need/want to understand some of the science (not sure if that's the word I'm looking for) behind how it works. Mechanically, I'm fine. We have a good (and very active) thing going, and I am happy with his latch and feel my supply is well matched to his demand.
Here's what I am confused about:
1. The balance between BM and solids. So, we took the whole "food for fun, until their 1" approach. He likes food, he eats it, it isn't the main attraction. I read on Kellymom (I think) that baby should take 25% of his intake from solids at 1 year. What does that mean? How could you measure that? This really baffles me (and I'm sure it's a really stupid question).
2. BM intake. Right, so this really has two parts.
A. I pump two days a week while I am at work and have noticed my output lower a bit over the past months. I'm not worried about this--I think it is normal and I have no concerns about my supply. I've also read that their overall BM intake decreases (after 9 months?). His solid food intake hasn't (seemingly) increased substantially, so how is he getting "enough" nutrients and calories? Does he need less calories now? (I can't see how that could be as he is SO active with learning to walk, etc.). He is doing fine. We haven't had him weighed in ages, but I'm not worried about weight. He is actively, happy and alert. Meeting targets. Wetting and pooping very regularly. It isn't that I am worried he is getting enough, I just don't understand how given that I think he takes in less BM overall and he isn't taking in more solids (again, both of which I think are normal and okay, I just don't get the how/why behind it).
B. We have always fed on demand, including at night. And, we co-sleep. I have never actively tried to reduce night time feedings. However, lately, he is waking less and when he does wake, he doesn't always nurse. And, when he does nurse, it is REALLY short. So, I am pretty sure he is taking in fewer night time calories. BUT, I haven't noticed an increase in daytime nursing (frequency, duration). So, what's happening with the nighttime calories? Is he just doing without? Is he getting them during the day?
3. (I know I've asked this before, I just don't get it). I have read that you can go longer without feeding or pumping after a year. Lots of people apparently pump wean? (I'll have to do another thread, later, when I'm ready for this). At a recent LLL meeting, someone was talking about going away for 8 hours and she was reassured that she'd probably be okay not pumping. HOW? I don't get this. It has been so drilled into me that you miss a feed, you pump. I don't get how my supply won't take a hit if I stopped pumping at work or went out for a day.
Okay, I'm re-reading this post and I know I seem a little loony and obsessive-compulsive. I'm actually a little embarrassed. But, I have to ask because understanding how it works is really key to it working for us (and with minimal stress). The more I learned and understood about BFing in the beginning, the more confident I was about it. So, like I said, I guess I'm just kind of back at square 1 (but not).
Thank you. And, thank you for not kicking me off the forum for being annoying.