May 9 12
by cara
at 8:45 PM
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Hacking Our Way Through the Brambles…Again

I have attempted to write this post about 5 times in the past week or so, but all of my attempted posts just sounded whiny.  So I deleted them and had my little pity party in private.  But maybe now I’m ready to share with you what’s been going on.

First, the good news:  My sweet baby boy is now 4 months old and meeting all his developmental milestones.  Yay!  And have you SEEN how cute Slingshot is?!  Here are a few reminders…

 

 

 

Husband's hairy leg, not mine....

Now that you’ve had your fill of the cuteness, here’s the sucky news: Slingshot’s not even in the 1st percentile for weight (10 pounds, 15 ounces), battling some pretty yucky eczema, acting more and more colicky, and still spitting up so much we’re changing clothes about 4 times a day.  I’ve given up dairy and eggs (in addition to gluten, if you’re keeping track) to combat the eczema and reflux.  Today, the pediatrician suggested we go ahead and see a pediatric Gi.  So basically it’s deja vu all over again, because this is exactly what happened with The Little Apple.

Excuse me while I go bang my head against the wall….

We really don’t want to go down this path again.  We are familiar with this particular path through the brambles.  It’s full of thorns.  You really have to hack your way through.  Its dark and scary in there.  Cuts and snags are to be expected.  If you wind up there, I hope you packed a bottle of water and a dairy-free egg-free-gluten-free snack or two, because you’re going to be in there for a while, wandering around lost and alone. Well, at least you’ve got your husband with you, but his sense of direction doesn’t seem to be any better than yours!  And you can just forget about GPS or a map of any sort.  This is uncharted territory.   You keep hoping to find that beautiful park on the other side- the one you’ve heard so much about.  The one full of flowers and butterflies and sunny skies and all things wonderful. You’ll get there eventually, but wouldn’t you rather just stay on the nice, well-worn concrete path that (almost) everyone else takes?  I know I would.

Unfortunately, I think we’re headed for the brambles again.  We’re hopeful we can hack our way out a little faster this time since we’ve been there, done that already.  But last time, we were just stumbling around blindly…and not expecting to ever have to retrace our path, so we’ll see how much our previous “experience” actually helps.

Ok, enough of the metaphor.

Here are some of the questions and thoughts that have been swirling around in my head for the last week or so (welcome to my crazy mind)…

  • Should we supplement with formula?  Have we reached the point where supplementation is necessary?  Is it avoidable?  I had every intention of breast-feeding exclusively this time around (we supplemented with The Little Apple from about 6 months).  I know formula isn’t the end of the world.  I also know this is a controversial topic.
  • Will formula even help?  It didn’t help The Little Apple gain weight…would it help Slingshot?
  • Is a feeding tube in Slingshot’s future too?!
  • Am I producing enough milk?  Should I be taking fenugreek (mmm….eau de syrup!) or talk to my doctor about some prescription galactagogues?
  • Should I be waking Slingshot at night every 3 or 4 hours to nurse?  (we’re waking up a couple times already, so that wouldn’t be a huge change…)
  • Should I be nursing more frequently during the day?  We’re at 2-3 hours now.  Not sure I can handle going more frequently than that (again).
  • Would it be possible to supplement with breast milk from a milk bank?  Would we even meet the qualifications (he’s not a preemie, not “sick,” etc).  Would I even WANT to do that?
  • What about that homemade formula I read about somewhere (Sally Fallon/ Weston A. Price Foundation or GAPS)?  Is that a good option for us?
  • What does The Picky Apple think we should do?
  • And most of all, what on the world is causing this in BOTH of my boys, and who can get to the bottom of this mystery?!

It’s so easy to get overwhelmed and bogged down in all of this.  I’m trying my best not to let that happen because I’m well aware that things could be so much worse!   We have so much to be thankful for!

That being said, I’m stomping my feet and pouting a bit as we gear up for another trek through the brambles.

Stupid brambles.

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From motherhood

  • Meredith

    If fenugreek is supposed to help start looking into curries.  You could easily make come  egg/gluten/dairy free curries without going spicy.

  • Meredith

    some, I meant some (not come)… apparently I can’t type.

  • Cara

    Great idea, Meredith!  I don’t think I’ve ever cooked with it before, but I’ll definitely look in to that.  I just took the pills when I was nursing The Little Apple.  

  • Jdorworth

    So sorry to hear you have to go down this road again.  It’s so hard with kids – you want to do everything possible for them but at the same time you don’t want to put them through anything.  Will keep you and your kids in my prayers.

  • Txtanya Txtanya

    Cara-I don’t have any advice for you, but just hope things get better.  It sounds like such a tough situation.  You are absolutely NOT whining or complaining.  It would be a lot for anyone to handle.  Hang in there!

  • http://cupsoverflowing.blogspot.ca/ Kimberleejay

    Hi Cara,
    Just want you to know that I love your blog. Your creativeness and love for your children shines through every post. So sorry to hear that Slingshot looks like he may be travelling down big brother’s road too. I’m not sure if you wanted people to attempt to answer your questions or if you were just thinking allowed but I had a few thoughts as I was reading through. Let me preffice this by saying that I am not a doctor, lactation consultant or professional in any way. I am just a mother of two who has heard some other mom’s stories. I won’t mind if you stop reading after those qualifications. I know sometimes I feel like the last thing I need is someone else giving well-meaning advice but  I also know that sometimes the light can be seen through the brambles when someone else shares their story.
    * Through  your travels have you heard about http://www.biogaia.com/consumer/biogaia-probiotic-products/biogaia-protectis-drops? I have a friend who had similar problems with her little boy for the first few months of his life. She tried everything while nursing and a friend told her to talk to her ped about this stuff and it ended up making all the difference in the world.
    * if you are worried about your milk supply being low, try pumping a feed and seeig how much you yeild. that will give you a better idea of how much your little guy is actually getting in total. Also, pumping is the best way to increase your milk supply. The more you pump the more your breasts will produce next feed and you will also have some reserve to bottle feed if you need it. If you are thinking about pumping an electronic dual sideis best and more convienant a lot of money but a great investment.
    * I would nurse as much as he seems to want it, but long feeds are by far better than short. The more he nurses on each breast and the longer the more of the hind milk he is getting with all the fat. If he is only nursing a few minutes on each breast more times, he may not be getting that hind milk.You can also pump off that hind milk after a feed and give that to him.
    * I wouldn’t wake hin to feed him. He will wake when he is hungry and a hungry and not as tired baby will eat longer and be more satisfied than a sleepy baby. My husband and I used to do everything we could to keep our daughter awakew during night feeds so she would get as much as she could (even tickling her and stripping her to make her chilly. Also the best milk is during the day when your fat content is more (morning feeds believe)
    * Don’t be afraid to suppliment with formula. We live in a culture that makes us feel guilty if we give formula. Sometimes it is just needed and a blessing to have. Make sure if you do supliment though you are pumping what you would have nursed so your milk supply doesn’t suffer. Also, watch Slingshot’s reactions carefully at first. He may be lactose and even Soya intolerant which could make his reflux worse.
    I hope some of this helps. I had trouble with my little boy’s weight gain and know how all consuming and hard it can be on you as a nursing mother. Don’t blame yourself or feel guilty. You obviously love your children very much and are doing what you can for him. This too will pass.
    I am praying for you and your husband above all else. Praying that God will heal your little man and give you both peace of mind.
    Hugs, Kim

  • Ilovebabykelsey

    I just came across your blog and its very good. Love your outlook and ideas. Just wanted to see how its going with the new baby? Still having problems? Just wanted to suggest the possibility of acid reflux. Sounds exactly what my guy had. We ended up going the prescription drug route and it worked miracles. Literally the same day we saw the ped and got the meds we had a different baby. A small miracle. But obviously you may have already been through that route or you may have already solved it. Just wanted to pop my two cents in. Good luck. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/sherri.francis1 Sherri Hurt Francis

    I loved this blog so I much I read up until 2:37 a.m.!!! I couldn’t stop. Each story was better than the last. Thank you so much for the enlightenment and joy. I wish you nothing but good luck and happiness with Slingshot, The Little Apple, The Picky Apple, and yourself. I think you’re awesome. Any woman who could be so must have an extremely wonderful family!!

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