Tonight I did not nurse Emma at bedtime. Instead, Tony read to her, rocked her, and put her to bed. It was very hard. Emma was upset and crying at times, as was I. She called for me repeatedly and asked to nurse. Tony was able to calm her down and she did eventually go to sleep.
I have really been feeling burned out on nursing and the whole bedtime routine lately. After we cut back in the summer I hoped that as Emma got older she would start to lose interest on her own, but instead she asks to nurse more than the 2 times a day we have been. At night she wants to nurse for 30-45 minutes and that just leaves me feeling tired and drained. By the time I'd get her to bed I would be frustrated and tired and there wasn't much evening time left for me to have to myself. I started to limit the nursing to about 15 or 20 minutes, but then Emma would be very upset, and so I'd lay down on the floor by her crib to be near her until she fell asleep. But I ran out of patience for that, so I'd have to sneak out of her room.
I have conflicting feelings about stopping the bedtime nursing. On the one hand I feel that Emma really needs that connection to me. But then I am feeling so tired and a little bit trapped by it. I feel guilty that my own needs are conflicting with Emma's needs. I wish I wasn't feeling this way, that I could keep nursing Emma as much as she wants. But at some point I have to take my own needs into consideration. That's just a very hard thing to do, when your baby is crying and you have to make the hard decision.