I spent a day making phone calls. I felt desperate because my baby, who had been labeled "failure to thrive" wasn't eating well and likely wasn't gaining well. I called the La Leche League and left a message, I called the lactation consultants at the hospital where the girls were delivered, the home health nurse who offered to come weigh her, and I called the pediatrician. The weight check confirmed what I suspected; another week of below average weight gain. She had only gained 2 ounces. I've been told they'd like to see at least 4.
I also called my chiropractor and made an appointment.
When I finally spoke to the pediatrician that afternoon I asked for a referral to a GI. He asked me a few questions and basically said it couldn't hurt.
We stopped giving her the Neosure suspecting it was the dairy and she couldn't handle it. I cut out the small amounts of dairy I had started to reintroduce. The LLL put me in contact with another lactation consultant. She had some insight and ideas. She thought that what started as reflux pain turned into an oral aversion.
We have good feedings and bad feedings. Good days and bad days. Sadly, there are times when he have an entire bad week. But, we've always gotten through it. We always get to the good at the end of each bad cycle.
The good feedings returned. The nurse came this past Tuesday and Lucy had gained 4 ounces. I was so relieved and happy until the behaviors picked back up again shortly after her weigh in.
Lucy may be the most stubborn little baby ever. When she's done eating, she's done. If I try to get her to continue she turns her head away. She's to the point now where she won't even look at me when she's finished. This is probably because she knows I'm going to try to get her to eat more.
Yesterday was our appointment with the pediatric GI. W met me there and I was glad he came along. We waited a long time to see the dr but when we did I was surprised by what she said. She examined Lucy and felt her stomach. She charted her weight and length on a growth curve and told us she was steadily following her own curve. Her weight and height followed the same curve and she didn't seem concerned. She said she seemed healthy and looked good. She asked if Lucy had a mind of her own and asked at what times we saw the arching. I also told her she has started to arch when frustrated or mad too and that was definitely behavioral.
The Dr said that it likely wasn't reflux because of when it was occurring. She said she didn't doubt she was a colicky and fussy baby and that she did have some reflux. But, what she was doing was all behavioral. She called Lucy a "naughty baby" in a joking way. She then suggested adding rice cereal for calories. She told us adding 1 tbsp to an ounce of breastmilk increased the caloric content from 20 calories to 30. We had only been fortifying with the Neosure to 22 calories. She said we could add the rice cereal to a bottle and give it to her like that it or spoon feed it to her. She said if she started to arch and cry during feedings to back off and offer her to eat again in a little bit.
As the day went on and Lucy continued to not eat well I got frustrated. It's easy enough to offer a baby to eat more frequently. She happily accepts many times if offered again in an hour or two. The problem is, she's not my only baby. I want them both on some kind of schedule. I need some kind of break from babies for my own sanity. Yesterday when I offered Lucy another feeding Clara started to cry. As Lucy will stop eating if even my arm moves or she hears a sound I couldn't get up to tend to Clara. Instead I had to listen to her cry while Lucy ate. When I finally picked her up her eyes were all red and puffy. I felt guilty and horrible. I felt like I had to choose between my babies.
Now the pediatrician and GI have told me to give rice cereal. The problem? I really wanted to do baby led weaning. We were going to skip spoon feeding and puréed foods. I wanted to skip rice cereal altogether v
We could put it in her bottle but I'm afraid she'll hate the taste or texture. Something as simple as that could lead to a complete refusal of bottles.
It makes me sad how many things I've had to compromise on because I have twins. It dictated my prenatal care, the birth experience I had, and honestly, the type of parent I have become. So, do I give up on wanting to do BLW? Do we introduce rice cereal but also then whole foods when they are ready? Do we just add the rice cereal to bottles and hope she continues to take them?
I'm not expecting anyone to have the answers for me. I'm just trying to figure things out.
The LC I've been talking to lately sent me this link last night:
It's nice to know I'm not alone but I can't help but wonder if we created and reinforced those behaviors for her. It's eye opening for sure.