When I was a new mom to my new son, breastfeeding was, well, new, as were all the warm, fuzzy, sky-high feelings that come along with the whole she-bang. I would see comments in my online communities about mothers feeling 'touched-out' and think, 'Well, that's just silly. That'll never happen to me. I LOVE breastfeeding and my son, so the combination of the two will never grow old for me.' And then karma pinched me in the nipple (or maybe that was my son).
This usually comes in one of four forms and it typically depends on my son's comfort level. I either:
a) head out on some errand,
b) stay home while they head out on some errand,
c) take a bubble bath, or
d) go back to the bedroom to read.
Any of the four will do, but the longer the uninterrupted time, the better. Of course, 'uninterrupted' is less likely if I choose options c or d, but sometimes the goddesses shine on me. Whatever, man, I just need some time!
Breastfeeding a toddler is vastly different than breastfeeding a newborn. It's wonderful, don't misunderstand, but it's different. And the newness has worn off. Again, I absolutely love it, wouldn't stop it for anything, and will wait until my son is ready to stop before we do, but it has its moments when it can wear on a mama. This doesn't make me a bad mama. This makes me an individual. As much as I am enamored with the whole process of breastfeeding my son, I am still an autonomous person with my own needs. Sometimes, those needs include a little personal space. The sooner I recognize those needs bubbling up and attend to them, the sooner I can return to my son refreshed and anew, making me an even better mama who can better meet his needs.
We cannot completely forgo our needs in this whole mothering process. It's a balancing act. Sometimes, things get a little off-kilter. So we stop, assess, act, return, and repeat as needed, all the while knowing that it's OK to feel what we feel when we feel it and to attend to ourselves from time to time.
When you are feeling touched-out, what do you do to care for yourself?