My 21 month old has fallen into a pattern over the past couple of months of nursing more or less half-asleep from about 4 am until we get up at 6:30 or so. We co-sleep (at least the second half of the night). I am happy to nurse her overnight but not for 2 1/2 hours straight. I hardly sleep during that time and my nipples become sore.
After an hour or so I've usually had enough and I will pull down my shirt and tell her that it's time to go back to sleep. About 50% of the time she'll roll over and go back to sleep but she's always rooting around again very soon (~15 minutes later). Other times, she starts fussing and I will either give in and nurse again or I will pat her back while she fusses and hopefully falls asleep for another few minutes. I feel like she's basically fussing/tossing and turning/half-awake nursing for the last two hours of the morning and it's starting to get to me. And I want better-quality sleep for her too. She is definitely still tired at that hour and sometimes she'll even fall asleep again around 6 and sleep until 7 or 7:30.
I wonder if this is part of stretching into sleeping through the night. I think maybe this early morning feeding frenzy has replaced her middle of the night nursing, which she hasn't done much of lately. I prefer nursing at 1 am for 15 minutes over 4 aim for 2 1/2 hours though!
I just wonder if anyone knows what this is all about or has experienced a similar pattern with their toddler and how it ended up. Thanks