Last night, poor Izzy was stricken with a high fever, along with a boogery nose and cough. Now it may come as no surprise that a sleepy, feverish, almost four-year old has trouble expressing what ails him. I ask him what is wrong and the answer is a heart wrenching sob. I offer him water; he won't take it. So I do what I know best. I offer him my boobs. The easiest way to soothe and comfort him is with "boobie" nature's comfort food. People may recoil in horror..why on earth are you still nursing an almost four-year old?
For so many reasons, though I won't go into them here. Nor will I launch into the myriad benefits of nursing in general, especially as it relates to the developing palate, for that is surely worthy of its own post.
What I will say is that most mothers are willing to do what they believe is best for their children. I do not suggest that every mother must nurse for as long as I do. Every mother and child duo is different. Instead I will say that when my child is sick, I want him to be cured. I would surely prepare any concoction that would help him but I know that breast milk has more curative properties than any other food I can give him.
Well past the age of two my boy was afflicted with stomach viruses and he was unable to eat or drink anything else. Being able to nurse him comforted me through my worries because I knew that he was receiving sufficient nutrients and would be less likely to become dehydrated. I could not imagine that the pediatrician-recommended artificially flavored and colored medicinal beverage would be better for him. Izzy didn't like the taste and neither did I. In fact, he spat it out. He only wanted boobie. For about five days, that was his sole source of comfort and sustenance.
Sadly, the time will come when he will no longer want to be comforted with "boobie". As a Nervous Nellie mama, I can't fathom what I will do to replace it. Though I have a hunch that chicken soup might become a worthy substitute..