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I know what they say, take the bottle away as soon as they turn a year old. It's terrible for their teeth! They will become dependent! Yes, I know, but we didn't do it, and now my daughter is two-and-a-half and my husband just decided to take her bottle away.
Without asking me.
For some reason my daughter loved her bottle fiercely. I let it go because she didn't have any other lovies—no blankie or special stuffed animal, she just had her bottle. As an added bonus, it was so easy to wind her down for the evening with a bottle of milk. And in the morning I would lay in my bed with my eyes closed, her warm body pressed against mine, as she quietly drank her milk. Talk about the best way to start your day. It was heavenly.
But for some reason, my husband decided one day to just stop giving her a bottle. He had good intentions. He wanted to take some initiative and make a parenting decision that would benefit our child. He wanted to help her move on to the next stage in life and leave babyhood behind. So one evening as we were getting the kids ready for bed he handed our daughter a sippy cup of milk instead of her bottle. She and I stared at it, eyes full of confusion. What is this? She wanted nothing to do with it. She refused to drink her milk that night, and, despite various efforts, has not had a drop of milk since.
I was devastated.
I didn't fully understand it at first, but I was furious with my husband. Every morning and night around the time when our daughter would normally be drinking her milk I would give him the stink-eye. I desperately wanted my baby girl to drink her milk happily so we could go back to cuddling. Every time she refused the sippy cup I would feel my blood boiling. How could my husband do this? How could he just take her bottle away? No warning! No plan of action! Nothing!
But I guess I didn't realize how much our little milk-drinking, cuddling sessions meant to me, especially since she is my last baby.
One night after the kids fell asleep my husband walked in to our room and I had decided to give him the silent treatment. (I know, I'm really mature.) After a while he asked what was wrong and I burst into tears. I didn't even realize I had all that pent up emotion inside of me.
"You took her bottle away! She's my last baby!" I said in between sobs, "She won't cuddle with me in the morning anymore! It's over! She's not my baby anymore!"
I don't consider myself to be emotional about my kids growing up. I welcome each new stage happily. On the first day of school I practically threw my kids inside their classrooms and skipped away smiling while other parents were crying and staring through the window to get one last glimpse of their kids. I am more than happy to see my kids gaining independence and moving on with life. But I guess I didn't realize how much our little milk-drinking, cuddling sessions meant to me, especially since she is my last baby. It's true what they say, it goes by so fast.
I guess this is it. My daughter is officially no longer a baby. She walks and talks. She doesn't wear diapers. She goes to school during the day. She can count to 14 and identify shapes and colors. And now she no longer uses a bottle. I enjoyed her baby years, they were precious, but I guess it's time to move on, thanks to my husband. (And yes, I'm still a teeny bit annoyed with him)