I don't want to stop because I don't want to lose that moment of closeness. I don't want to lose that little face smiling up at me. I don't want to lose that hand, stroking my face.
But there is no reason to continue. I read, a couple of weeks ago, a post over at The Mule in response to the Time article showing a mother breastfeeding her three year old. In it, the Mule asked women who were still breastfeeding past one to post their pictures and say why they were still doing it.
And many of them said "There was no reason to stop".
I commented on that post, because I said that for me there was no reason to continue. I had spent time trying to find independent, peer-reviewed research to show health benefits for mother and baby in feeding past one. But I couldn't. The WHO recommends breast-feeding for two years, but as far as I can gather that's because they are advising the world, and have to take into account water supplies and adequate nutrition, neither of which are, I hope, going to be a problem for M.
I intend no criticism of those who do feed past one, or two, or more. But I knew, for me, continuing wasn't about M, who really wasn't very bothered at all, but for me, who was.
So I said I'd stop. But a week, two weeks, later, I was still going. Still with no reason to carry on other that that I wanted to hang on to that baby closeness for one day more.
And then I read an article in Saturday's Guardian. It was one of those articles that had me nodding smugly as it went on about the amazingness that is breastmilk - the perfectly designed cocktail of healthy bacteria it contains, the miracle of oligosaccarides, the fact that no-one really knows how it works - look at me, I thought, I'm such a great mother that I am still giving this to my baby.
Until my smug smile was summarily removed. Because apparently, as well as this wonderful cocktail of perfection, I'm also feeding him all the toxins I'm exposed to. All the pesticides, the fire-retardants, the plastics and polymer residues. And more than that, I'm actually using him as a dustbin for them, off-loading them from the fatty tissues in which they are stored into him as fast as I can.
I have no idea how accurate this research is. I don't know if it has been independently funded (by SMA, anyone?!), or if it has been peer reviewed. But I do know that this is what happens in the food chain, and I find the logic that it is also happening in me sufficiently compelling that I have stopped.
I can find no reason to continue, and now I have a reason to stop.
Just like that. I gave M his last feed on Tuesday. And I took its picture for posterity.
And guess what? He's fine with it. And so will I be.