Friday, February 06, 2009

On the Mend

It has really been a while since my last post. For those of you on facebook, this is a cut and paste from a note that I wrote on there, because I see no sense in typing it all over again, just to say the same thing:

Last Wednesday, Jonah and I went to meet the new pediatrician. It was to be an interview, a well visit, and two vaccines. My heart sank when they weighed him, and I realized that he weighed exactly the same the day before Thanksgiving. The pediatrician, who was meeting him for the very first time, was also obviously concerned. I had known that he was tiny, but I didn't realize that he had completely stopped growing. My world stopped that day.

We were admitted to the hospital to find out why he stopped growing. As soon as we arrived the tests started. Chest x-rays, blood and urine samples, CT scan, swallow test, all kinds of consultants were called in, my milk was analyzed; you name it and they tested it! The final verdict was that his reflux had gotten so bad that he had an aversion to eating. Reflux, for those who don't know, is heart burn times a thousand for infants. It is very painful. When he was first diagnosed with it, it seemed like it was getting better and instead of medicating, we chose to try alternate remedies such as keeping him upright throughout and after, I changed my diet etc. We thought we had it under control, but my natural parenting failed me on this point. I cannot tell you the guilt that I feel for not taking the simple action of giving him this one very inert medication. The end result was that Jonah would only eat two ounces, sometimes less, at each feeding. This is enough to sustain him but barely enough to get by. It also resulted in my body only producing two ounces of milk for feeding (breastmilk works on a supply and demand basis- Jonah asks for two ounces, the body makes two ounces) We had to teach Jonah to eat more with each feeding, stretch his belly so that he could physically take more food, and train my body to make enough milk to keep up with his new feeding schedule. I may have to stop breastfeeding altogether because of this, but we will see. For now I am doing everything in my power to continue to produce milk, and hopefully soon I will produce it in abundance and it will not dry up.

We were released from the hospital today after a week of being there, but we still have a list of appointments to go to. We are all just glad that it is a relatively easy problem to fix, and not a life threatening or chronic illness. Mommy is not happy about needing to use formula, but is going through the humbling process of learning that it does have its place.


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