There are boundless, varying, vastly different ways that weaning can play out between a mom and her baby (or toddler, or young kid). Which is why, of course, you probably aren’t going to know how weaning will go until you actually give it a try (unless you possess the magic powers of reading the future, in which case teach me your ways or at least tell me my future). Seriously though, there were a lot of things about weaning that I didn’t know, or things that I didn’t have to do while weaning, even though I thought I did and even though other people told me I did. Like many aspects of parenthood, and of breastfeeding in general, so much can vary from mom to mom or baby to baby, it’s hard to make predictions.
So, of course, everyone’s experience will be different, and I don’t assume that mine is textbook or some benchmark for any other breastfeeding and subsequent weaning experience. However, there were a few things I learned about the whole breastfeeding process, including how it ends. Now that I’m on the other side of it, though, I see how, in some ways, my process did match with some of the stories and explanations I saw, and in some ways it didn’t. In the end, with breastfeeding, ending breastfeeding and every other parenting experience in general, I could only take bits and pieces of information, put them together, and form my own way of dealing with whatever motherhood threw my way.
So, with that in mind, here’s what I realized I didn't have to do, even though I was pretty convinced otherwise, when it came to weaning: