Room for two

tandem nursing

One of Ava’s books about nursing (Breastmilk Makes My Tummy Yummy) contains a picture of a mom nursing a toddler and a baby and states: “Two can breastfeed without fuss, there is room for both of us.” On Wednesday night, we – me, Julian and Ava – experienced that for the first time.

Jody had to work an unusually long day yesterday and wasn’t planning on getting home until after 8 p.m. Since I knew Ava was really tired I decided to try to put her to sleep while Julian slept in the swing. Seems easy enought, right? Well, wouldn’t you know it, just as I got Ava undressed, Julian woke up crying. So much for easy. I brought him in the bedroom with us, hurriedly put Ava in her PJs, washed her face and hands (we skipped brushing teeth) and we all laid down on Ava’s twin bed (it was cozy) so that I could nurse Julian and hopefully, get Ava to sleep. She thought it was quite fun that we were all laying on her bed together. When I asked her if she wanted “na-na” (to nurse) with Julian, the giggles started. It took a bit of acrobatics on Ava’s part to nurse since I had Julian in the side-lying position, but she/we managed it. She giggled a lot as she nursed and thought the whole thing was quite funny, and I started laughing a few times too appreciating the comedic value of the scene. After the giggles subsided, she stroked Julian’s cheek and then held his hand as they both nursed, and it was a very sweet moment. Then the giggles started back up again. 😉

It was all going quite well (other than being a bit uncomfortable for me), when Ava remembered that we hadn’t read any books yet – something that daddy generally does as part of her nighttime routine. Since Julian was asleep at that point, Ava and I got some books, turned on the closet light and read in the little hallway by the closet while we sat on the floor. She thought that was pretty fun too. 😉 Then Julian woke up so I brought him to our storytime on the floor as well.

It was about that time that daddy got home, so he came in and proceeded to brush Ava’s teeth, then took Julian downstairs so I could finish putting Ava to bed. She had a bit more na-na though not without first saying she wanted to do it with Julian again. Aww. I explained to her that it was a special occasion that she had na-na with Julian because daddy wasn’t home yet. She seemed OK with that, had her na-na, rolled over and drifted off to sleep.

Never a dull moment in this house. 😉

I was talking with a friend about breastfeeding recently and she observed that since Ava only nurses once per day (before bed) that I’m not really tandem nursing, and she’s right. I made the decision before Julian was born that even if Ava asked to nurse more frequently (than her usual once before bedtime nursing), I was going to say no. It was hard to tell her no a few times when she was really upset, but I knew I had to set those boundaries or I would end up tandem nursing them, which wasn’t something I felt comfortable doing. And now after having nursed them simultaneously once (which may be the only time I do – we’ll see), I am happy I made the choice that I did because I honestly can’t imagine nursing two kids throughout the day and/or night. I commend the women who are able to do it. 🙂 You rock, girlfriends!


Since we’re on the topic of breastfeeding, I thought I’d share a few recent articles on the subject:

Sharing the milk: Moms breast-feeding other women’s babies are raising eyebrows, and concerns

Food or lewd? Breast-feeding reveals divide – Why we get so worked up about how women feed their babies

15 thoughts on “Room for two”

  1. That sounds like such a tender moment, Ava stroking Julian. Sigh. Yeah I already know I couldn’t tandem on a regular basis, not that I have any one to tandem with!

    I never head of that BF book, I’m gonna have to look into it! I want MY Julian to be able to read about his favorite activity too, we only have 1 nursing book (Near Mama’s Heart). I love that picture at the top of the post too.

  2. I loved this post. I don’t think I’ll have get to experience that special moment of tanden nursing and I do wish I could. Kaia weaned herself totally at 17 months…
    I smiled as I read this, imagining your sweet babies holding hands and sharing Mama’s love and nourishment and tenderness. 🙂

  3. Hello, i just wanted to say that was the sweetest story. I can only imagine how hard it would be to tandem nurse an infant and a toddler. My son was difficult enought with all of the acrobatics he did. That was one of the biggest reasons I finally had to wean him at 3, it was just too unconfortable to continue. But like you said I applaud anyone who can do it!!

    P.S. I love the new blog. I really like on the links that there are pics.

  4. We have that book too, and Ryan loved it. I’ll have to dig it out so Cole can read it. BTW, even though Ryan weaned at 26 months, now he wants to cuddle up to me for “nursies.” He’ll rest his head on my chest and make sounds like he is nursing. It is so sweet.

  5. Thanks for visiting my blog! I love yours. 🙂 This is crazy, Ava and Julian are my favorite girl/boy names. Obviously I have 3 boys so I’ve never had the opportunity to have an Ava and DH has nixed “Julian” three times in a row. Says it’s “too girly.” Bah!

  6. For some reason my Bloglines sub hasn’t picked up your many new posts so I’ve been slack in leaving comments! Sorry!

    I wanted to tell you I was thinking about you (and tandem feeding) the other day while feeding Lydia. Tim came along and saw me and said “I want milk too!”. So I asked if he wanted ‘fridge milk’ (i.e. cow’s milk) or ‘mummy’s milk’. He said mummy’s so I said fine and invited him up on the bed wondering if he’d remember how to do it since he’s been weaned since 2 1/2. He was giggling a bit as he came close, then he pursed his lips and tried to drink it like a straw! LOL! I laughed and he laughed and we both decided fridge milk might be better. 🙂

  7. AWWW That is sooo sweet…I tandem’d both boys twice before Ewan weaned and it was one of the sweetest moments of my life. Ewan like Ava also stroked Rufus’ was too sweet. enjoy mama!!

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