I’m sure you’ve noticed blogging has been lighter again recently. We’ve had a lot of medical appointments in the last month, but I still haven’t figured out what to say about them.
“Failure to thrive.” That’s been getting tossed at us on and off all month. What the hell kind of name for a medical condition is that anyways? It’s right up there with incompetent cervix and hostile uterus. What I hear when someone says that is “you are clearly doing this parenting thing all wrong and it’s making your child fail at being alive”. Either that or my child is being called a failure. That’s really not a good feeling to have and it’s not accurate at all.
Failure to thrive simply means the kid isn’t growing the way the doctor says she should be. He says she needs more milk and less solids. She needs to consume more puree and less finger food. I say someone should tell her that, because I can’t make her do anything. Force feeding her bottles is awful and barely worth the effort since she’ll spit up what little I get in her. I can pry her mouth open and jam in a spoon, but she’ll just scream and refuse to swallow. I can’t make my child eat if she doesn’t want to.
Our pediatrician finally sent us to the gastroenterology clinic (45 minutes away, of course) to see what to do. The food I get in the baby doesn’t stay down. She was switched to Prevacid, but it doesn’t really work better than Zantac (it does, however, cost me 4 times as much). The GI talked about running scans and trying $500 a month formula (I have a chest freezer full of frozen breast milk, so that made me want to sob) and not letting her eat any of her favorite foods. Then they plotted her weight out on their fancy charts and said never mind.
Seriously, I spent weeks feeling awful and was told her weight gain is fine, 10 pounds in 8 months is plenty. Yes, there is a very really chance that she has a mild milk protein intolerance, but it’s not worth doing anything about it. Just add melted butter to her baby food and relax.
As an aside, butter to increase calories in baby food is a terrible idea if your baby may have a milk protein issue. She was blowing up like a volcano for days before my brilliant friend Kim suggested we try coconut oil. Coconut oil melts like a dream and is higher in calories, so it actually works perfectly for us. When she eats baby food or scrambled eggs. Mostly the kid refuses to eat anything other than pumpkin roll. I’m screwed when the season ends.
Anyways, I don’t know how much the kid has gained since then and I don’t know if I care. It seems a little unfair to expect her to catch up on weight that fast. She didn’t really grow in utero after week 25, so she came out much smaller than a 31 week preemie.
In better news, her adorable tininess means she was perfect for the part of baby Jesus in the Christmas pageant. I think she may be the oldest baby Jesus of all time.
Anyways, the kid and I are road tripping to the Cleveland Clinic in a few weeks to get her plagiocephaly analyzed. Basically, her head is kind of flat in the back and she might need a cranial band (helmet). It’s a very common condition in preemies. I am terrified of taking her out of her normal routine and spending hours in the car. We are also staying overnight with my “uncle”, so she’s going to be sleeping in the portacrib for the first time. I’m terrified.