Jeremy and I had a rare Friday night date last night. Normally, we’re both so tired by the end of the week that our goal is to get the kids down by 7:30 and enjoy a quiet dinner together before we both pass out. Last night we had tickets to our church’s final production of its Easter Pageant, which is a wonderful depiction of Jesus’ life and the sacrifice He made for us. We decided to make it date night and grab dinner before the show. The only down side to this plan was it meant I barely spent an hour with the babies when I got home from work and we weren’t going to get to put them to bed. We’ve gotten into a really good routine where I get individual time with each baby, nursing and rocking one to sleep, while Jeremy has one-on-one with the other. Because Grant goes down easier, he gets to go first. While he’s nursing, Maria is getting eased into sleep on Jeremy’s chest. By the time Grant is down, which takes about 15 minutes, Maria is very relaxed and dozing. Once I get her she quietly nurses to sleep and generally goes down without protest. This is one of my favorite times of the day. Nursing not only calms them but releases calming hormones in me and gets us reconnected after being separated most of the day.
Last night we left bottles with my parents with instructions to go down between 7:00 and 7:30 and we would be home for their 10:00 top off. We got home shortly after 10:00 and both babies were awake and in serious need of mommy time. I’ve wondered recently if they really need that 10:00 nursing session and last night was confirmation that, yes, they do still need it.
I nursed both at the same time and put them back to bed. Maria, however, wasn’t ready and I realized she needed that one-on-one time that we normally have at bedtime. I went to get her and she nursed some more, rocked a little longer and was finally ready to go to bed. Mom said they both took nearly an hour to fall asleep and I think it’s because they didn’t have their normal routine and one-on-one mommy time. In the past, I’ve noticed that they will wake and wish to nurse more during the night if I’ve been gone longer than normal and I’ve read that it’s pretty normal behavior for babies whose mom’s work outside the home. They need that connection time and honestly I need it too.
I’ve thought recently about when they should wean and realize that even though they are almost a year old, none of us are ready for weaning. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breast feeding for 12 months minimum and to continue as long as each party mutually agrees. I think it’s safe to say that these three parties agree to keep on going. We’ll see where we are in a few months, but I venture to guess that at the very least, we’ll all still go for our evening fix.