About the unweaning of my 35 lb infant

They say the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. So I admit it – I am having a problem letting go. You see, I am ridiculously in love with babies. So much so that it may be some sort of sickness. Shortly after the birth of my dear friend’s first child, I  terrified bonded with her by revealing that I was pretty sure Heaven involves rolling around on the floor and cuddling with a pile of babies ages 2-8 months.

Anyway. Nearly two-year-old Beans is my second and, as hard as it is for me at times to come to terms with, last baby. Around 14 months old, she started to become ambivalent to the pacifier. Indifferent. Blase’. She was entirely take-it-or-leave-it during the day, and we stopped giving it to her at night entirely. She didn’t seem to notice.

We were making great strides forward in Project Paci Wean and then I just couldn’t handle it anymore and completely backslid into denial. This was my baby. My newborn. (14 month olds who can walk and scream “NO!” while throwing appliances, food, and shoes at you still sort of qualify as newborns, right?) I started shoving pacis back in Bean’s mouth gently giving her the opportunity to spend some time with her forgotten pacifiers, and just see where it led.

Husband was horrified by my regression, but the crazed look in my eyes as I presented my toddler only-just-barely-no-longer-a-fetus  with a veritable buffet of options from Paci Paradise, spoke both loudly and clearly. The madness in my eyes warned: “You know that whole ‘choose your battles wisely’ expression that comes in so handy within the constructs of the marital dynamic? This is one of those times that you’d best wisely choose to indulge me by tempting our 60 week old infant with every size, color, texture, and brand of pacis available. The Mams! The Nuks! The weird green translucent ones that we brought her home with from the hospital! PRESENT ALL THE PACIS!!!”

Husband chose wisely.

Children Cherubs over the age of one are not allowed to have pacis at daycare. Fast-forward to today at drop-off, and I had to wrench a bink out of clenched teeth while my preschooler neonate jelly-legged in the middle of the hallway, publicly and theatrically screaming “PAAACIIII!!! MY PACCIIIII!!! WANT PAAACIIII!!!

So anyway when my 66 month old and I are still inevitably waging this battle in the fall 2016 kindergarten carpool lane, I am probably going to have some serious regrets about my 2012 regression and subsequent paci-unweaning.

But the truth is, I just don’t know how to let my baby go.

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{There are some instances when I am writing, such as in this particular post, where I am so tempted to use words like “swimmingly” and “ahem”. I had the perfectly appropriate places for both. And I just can’t bring myself to do it. The association is too unpleasant. I am ruined forever. I’ll leave it at that.}

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23 thoughts on “About the unweaning of my 35 lb infant

  1. Our youngest is 13. As I toss his laundry in the washer, the oldies like to remind me that they were taught how to do their own laundry at the age of ten. Letting go of the baby is HARD!!

    To paci-ween– take a needle and poke little holes in them. They will deflate and will be discarded by your “infant”. :)

  2. I can’t relate yet, as I don’t currently have children. But one of my good friends has a 17 month old (her last) who she still lets use his “binky” and just got his first haircut the other day despite her desperately not wanting to. So, I get the feeling you’re not alone in this hold-on-to-your-last-baby thing. :)

  3. Love it! Love the 60 week old infant, and 66 month old kindergartner! There’s always duct tape. Wait….forget I said that, that’s pretty much a no-no. ;-)

  4. Love it! This is so me! I did not mind my daughter having her paci- we (I) did the same thing with enticing her with it because I thought her wooden paci chains were so cute! But we all know it was really more about what the paci symbolizes- a baby- and I didn’t want to let her go. When friends would stop by, or ride in our car I would yank it out of her mouth quickly- I was so worried about being criticized! That’s when I knew- I didn’t have a choice- I had to let go! Now we have a 5 month old boy and I worry I am slipping back again! :) He is def. our last and I find myself hanging on! :) I cry when I pack up the clothes that don’t fit and realize no baby of mine will ever wear that again. All I can say is- enjoy the ride and don’t worry- no one is going off to college with a paci!

  5. My baby will be 20 in a few months and I’m sure “someone”, probably his older sister, will tell you I still baby him. Fall 2016 will be difficult!

  6. I am glad that your hubby chose wisely in this situation.

    My second (of four) used her pacifier (me) until she was 29 months old. I never imagined nursing a kid until she was old enough to verbalize, “I’m bored, so I want to nurse.”

  7. I have a million (or two) photos of my kids on my laptop, and my screen saver is a slideshow of them in random order. The other day, my youngest (now 3 1/2) caught a photo of herself with her binky. She mused on it a bit and then asked, quietly, wistfully, “Can I have my binky back?” It’s been 2 years. I think a part of her will always miss it!

  8. PRESENT ALL THE PACIS! I love it. It’s really tough, and mine are still young enough that I’m barely out of this. I am not even a baby person, but I still get so sad–my saddest moment is usually when the kids get teeth. I cry to my husband, “I miss their gummy smiles!” and he smiles back in a way that is comforting, but assures me he has no idea what I am dealing with. :)

  9. This was so heartfelt AND funny – my favorite combination! Good luck letting go of your 68 month old…

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