Saturday, March 28, 2009

Get In (GI) My Belly!

(Jake's case you are all wondering...he is so "witty".)

Welcome to week twenty-two and "officially" five months! Hugh is getting to be so big and so sweet! We just love him so much. We love that he'll just stare and smile at us, it is the sweetest thing...melts our hearts. We love that he loves to sneeze - he gets the biggest smile on his face...he sneezes all the time, especially every time we go into the sun. We love how happy he gets - he giggles and squeals (this really throaty squeal) all the time. Lately, I have been taking advantage of some additional "snuggle" time with him...I'll sit and rock with him for a few minutes before laying him down...I miss my little baby at times. I know my "snuggle" times are limited and I'll take them when I can get them. He is growing too fast!

So, what did week twenty-two bring? Well, it brought the long awaited appointment with the GI specialist at PCH. I really liked the doctor - he was very young...I have decided that when doctors start to look young, it means I am old. Anyway, he was very nice and answered some questions. However, he wasn't able to magically fix everything. So, we will be going for a barium swallow test this coming Friday and he'll meet with a feeding specialist. We are also going to try him on Prevacid (another anti-acid drug) and the doctor increased his Zantac dose - he explained that every pediatrician under prescribes Zantac (awesome). Also, I am off dairy for another two weeks (so sad...luckily the Cap'n had already set sail prior to the no dairy rule...we'll meet again my Cap'n) and we supplement with Nutramigen formula (super expensive - Jake explained to me that there is a new liquid gold in town...I guess mine has lost it's value). So, Hugh is growing (Praise God!) - he is now 15lbs. 7oz. (25%) and 26.5in. (75%); however, he is continuing to slide back on the growth charts. The doctor explained that we need to be grateful for any growth in a baby that has feeding issues and need to be prepared for him to potentially fall farther and farther back on the charts. Who cares about the charts?!? (Not, not me. I would never spend hours searching on the internet for information on growth, not me.) Yes, I know 25% is not bad and you all probably think I am overreacting; however, I don't want him to get to the 10% or less...why would I? I want his growth to me crazy and tell me I am overreacting...I am okay with that. However, God has really been teaching me about patience lately and I am doing so much better with Hugh's feedings. I am no longer getting frustrated with him and am allowing him to eat when he wants without so much forcing. We have to get up with him in the night to feed him, I don't need to spend my days freaking out. The doctor explained to us that we are feeding around fourteen times a day (I argued with him at first) since feedings only last thirty minutes (he explained that a baby will take what he wants in the first thirty minutes and then they are done). So, yes...we are feeding him fourteen times a day! Hugh did great for the appointment - he was a total ham, but was so sweet for the nurse and doctor. We are praying he'll be able to handle the barium swallow test...could get interesting with a child who doesn't eat. He may need to have a feeding tube...we'll see. So, we are thankful we are taking the next steps and trusting in God to protect our little guy and to grow our little guy...we know God is faithful. I have realized that I continue to have no control and God will handle things His way, which are the best way. Also, we are reminded that Hugh is so healthy and struggles with eating - I read another woman's blog and her son has been in the hospital the last week with a serious heart condition (please pray for Stellan)...we need this perspective. God is good!

So, enough with the constant "My son doesn't eat" sob story...there is more to this child than not eating. So, what else did week twenty-two bring? It brought hair gel! I have been wanting to put gel in his hair forever (Jake didn't love the idea...I think he was just jealous since it was his old hair gel.), I went ahead and did it. I love it and he will have many more hair gel days! It brought attempts to try and break the swing naps...not going that well; however, he hasn't really wanted to nap much lately (lucky me). It brought attempts (unsuccessful) to sit up...I see this happening in the next few weeks. It brought more toys and games - I play a game (that I made up all by myself) called "Launch" where I'll launch things at him (his head)...he has a blast - don't judge me. It brought Karo syrup to get some things going down got them going and going and going! It has continued to bring lots of smiles and giggles...this little guy is so cute!

Thanks to you all for your prayers and support! We are so blessed by so many amazing family and friends!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Rolling, Rolling, Rolling...

Well, here we are at week twenty-one! We'll "officially" hit five months next week. We cannot believe it has already been five months...time is going by too fast with him! We grow more and more in love with him everyday. We realize God has blessed us so much with this little guy and cannot imagine our lives without him.

So, what did week twenty-one bring? Well, it brought the "full" rolling. Hugh has been rolling over from his stomach to his back since five weeks, but the back to the stomach took a little longer. He was finally able to conquer the roll early this past week and he is so proud of himself. He enjoys his tummy time more now because he got there all by himself and last night he flipped himself to his tummy to sleep. However, he now forgets that he can roll himself back over and will fuss until someone comes to roll him back over...what is that all about? Probably, it is a glimpse into my future with boys. It has brought a lot more focus on toys - he loves to grab things more and more, and play with his toys. It has brought lots more giggles...for aunts and uncles, and my mom said he had a "giggle attack" while she was here. He thinks he is really funny. It brought more time hanging out with friends - we love to see little kids around Hugh; they get so excited and just want to love on him, which we love. It brought his first trip to the mall (yes, he is five months and we haven't gone to the mall yet...I am not a shopper) to buy his Easter outfit (it is the cutest thing...with a it!). Well, I was glad my sister-in-law and mom were with us because he decided to "christen" his first trip to the mall with a major was awesome. I saved his life...yes, I saved his life. We were on our walk and one of those wood bees or turtle bees (the REALLY HUGE black ones that my mom swears don't sting, but whatever...they are super scary) flew into his stroller. Well, of course I stepped away from the stroller...what else would I do? (I hate bees...really hate bees.) However, within a second, I realized that I needed to protect my child, so I batted the bee away, grabbed the stroller, and ran. Luckily, we both walked away (well, I walked and Hugh was pushed) with no battle wounds. We are still really battling with the eating issues...they have gotten worse; however, we realize God's goodness in it all and we also realize we have to put everything into perspective. We tried introducing solids again, and he'll take them a little bit, but not really. He still prefers to eat while sleeping - it is easier for him (and it is very interesting explaining to people that, "No, I don't want to lay him down. I am waiting for him to fall asleep so I can feed him."). We are looking forward to meeting with the GI specialist this next week - Jake's cousin works at PCH and has heard good things about the doctor we are meeting. He has also been running a low grade fever, which we think is due to teething...he is always running a low grade fever. Overall, it has been a great week with another milestone!

I must admit that some days are harder than others...I have seen my patience running very low this past week and getting more and more frustrated about the eating. This week, I was studying 1 Corinthians 13 and I really needed the reminder of "Love is patient and is not irritable or resentful" (1 Corinthians 13:4-5). I needed to ask Jake and Hugh for forgiveness because I was not loving them like Christ has loved me. I know I am not patient at times and it is very ugly. I love this little guy so much and do not want to allow his eating issues to drive me crazy. I need to constantly be reminded that God has us here for His purposes and we trust in His goodness. So, I am constantly preaching 1 Corinthians 13 to myself all day. Praise God that His patience with me is not contingent upon my patience with others! We also had the chance to spend time with friends who have three little boys - one of their twins, who will be two in May, has Down syndrome. They are such amazing parents, who love the Lord so much. I felt silly telling her Hugh's problems with eating, but she was so encouraging and just wanted to listen. What was so encouraging to see from them is to not dwell on the issues because they are easy to get caught up in, but to focus on the successes and celebrate them. There was also another couple at dinner and their son was potty trained at nineteen months...that is some serious encouragement as well! Praise God for using others to point me back to Him!

We thank you all for your prayers...we are so blessed to have so many family and friends who love us and our son. We hope you all are doing well and you all are in our prayers!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Bring Back the Milk!

Well, here we are at week twenty! We cannot believe how much fun we are having with Hugh. He is such a sweet little guy and we are so blessed to have him. I love waking up each day with him and finding out what is going to happen that day...I love that when we get him in the morning, he has the biggest smile on his face. What a great way to start the day!

So, what did week twenty bring? Well, it continued the bad eating habits. We called the Doctor on Monday...and we have decided to see a specialist. So, we'll be going to Phoenix Children's in a couple weeks. I talked with the nurse about adding the scoop of formula to each bottle and she said, "Did someone tell you to do that?", of course, I explained to her that it was all my idea (being the Dr. Saylor that I am). Well, we found out it isn't the best idea...the milk is getting too rich for him and making the reflux worse. So, we are putting a half scoop in each bottle now. Oh, well...he will survive. I also decided to cut out dairy this week and see if that made a difference. I did this before, but thought I would try it again (the only sign of a milk allergy he has is the refusal to eat). Well, for those of you who know me know that I love me some cereal. I dream about waking up and eating a big bowl of cereal everyday. Well, I had to sit and explain to the Cap'n (Cap'n Crunch) that I would not be able to enjoy breakfast with him this week because I couldn't have any milk. It was very sad. You learn that dairy is in almost everything (well anything good)...seriously. So, we have realized it hasn't made a, I am back to dairy (and swimming in cereal)! We really wanted it to be a dairy issue (I really did...I know some of you may think that I didn't, but I really did); however, now that we have realized that it is not...bring on the milk! We also tried a soy based formula...the jury is still out on that one. We have also realized he is not constipated...just changed his poo patterns. So, now when he goes poo...he brings the serious NASTY with him (that is another story). He also stinks when he has a big boy (or Jake)...very nasty (maybe he has the Johnson IBS). Ah, gotta love my boys. We have also started waking him up to feed him (the Doctor recommended it); however, we decided to do it around 11PM rather than makes for a much happier Mama. My mom also mentioned that maybe he is just like me when I was baby...let's hope not. I was a failure to thrive baby and almost died...I weighed 25lbs. in kindergarten and 50lbs. in sixth grade. I would hide food (even the good stuff like McDonald's) and went through a phase of only eating mayonnaise, sticks of butter, pancakes, and hot dogs...yes, my mom let me eat all those goodies because they were high in fat. So, no...I don't want him to be just like me and have to ride in a car seat until he is me crazy. So, we are just being patient and dealing with the eating issues...I have a new peace about it (God is so good) and don't freak out anymore (or don't freak out everyday I should say). Week twenty brought lots of guests, which was a lot of fun. He got to spend time with Gracie, who is the daughter of Jake's cousin, David, and his wife, Amanda. She is two weeks younger than Hugh and is very sweet. They talked to each other...too bad she didn't convince him to eat! He was very sweet with all the company, which was an answer to prayer. God has blessed us with a very sweet baby. We brought out the backpack carrier this week (we would love to take him hiking), but he isn't quite ready yet. He is starting to pull toys off (like Mr. Redbird...renamed MS. Redbird after the way Hugh "handled" her) the play mat, which makes me a little sad since he is getting too big - I love the play mat. He has decided on his future career...we know some kids want to be firefighters or race car drivers, but not our son, oh no, he is going to be just like his parents and love the office job (see the picture below)...he is obsessed with the computer (which I am sure he has learned from me). We think his hair is starting to grow in some more...definitely will be dark and definitely will have more than Jake. He is trying so hard to roll from his back to his stomach...he hasn't quite figured out that he needs to take his head with that roll (darn head).

God teaches us everyday while we stumble along trying to parent Hugh. He has taught me so much about control (that I don't have any and He does) and that I need to trust in Him daily. I have learned that I don't need to schedule everything (I have a cleaning schedule, a meal schedule, etc., etc....I am a schedule freak) because not everything (Hugh) fits into a schedule box. We praise God for the little things everyday and that His mercies are new every morning. We have stopped asking, "Why can't he eat more?" and have started saying, "Praise God for what he did eat today." We have decided that Babyhappy works better for us than Babywise; and I am okay without the schedule (Hugh loves the no schedule thing).

Thanks to you all for your prayers. We hope everyone is doing well! How blessed are we are to serve such an amazing God!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Trial...and Error

So, here we are at week nineteen! Hugh is getting so big...this week was the first time that I thought to myself, "Wow, he really is getting to be so big...not a little baby any more." I am a little sad that he is growing up so fast...I guess we need to have another little baby (not too soon). God has blessed us so much with this little boy and each new day is something new. God is definitely using this little guy to sanctify us and we always pray we turn to the cross in times of struggle rather than turn away from it.

Well, unfortunately, this post title is not, "Miracle Drug" or "Yes, He is Eating!"...we are still struggling with the eating. This last weekend was the worst he had ever been...he basically would only eat while sleeping (it is called sleep feeding or dream feeding). It was tough to watch since he would be so hungry yet he would refuse to eat. So, we called the Doctor back on Monday and headed to the office (I am helping stimulate the economy...dumping lots of money into the healthcare system). Well, the Doctor explained that Axid can make babies nauseous and Hugh was probably struggling with, we started him on Zantac. The Zantac has been helping...he is eating while awake again and the arching of the back is getting to be less and less. We maxed out the Zantac dose this last week to see if he would be able to drink more than a few ounces per feeding, but we haven't seen much change. So, we'll be back to stimulating the economy on Monday (back to the Doctor to try a new drug). We decided to add a scoop of formula to every bottle so he can continue to get the calories he needs without having to drink them...we haven't asked the Doctor if this was okay, but we assume it is fine. We have decided that we don't want to live at the Doctor's office, so we know he will eventually (emphasis on eventually) grow out of this and we can live with his eating habits for, we'll try one more drug and then probably stop unless the doctor thinks we should keep trying new things. The hard thing is, is we feel like he'll be making progress and then the next day he is right back to where he was. We'll see how next week goes.

So, what is new this week? Well, he has learned to pull his pacifier out, but hasn't quite learned how to put it back the right way. He is much more purposeful with his grabbing and everything goes into the mouth. We are pretty convinced he is now teething since everything goes into the mouth, he is always drooling, and runs a low grade fever all the time. I almost thought about trying to breastfeed him again (it would be so much easier...less dishwashing, always the perfect temperature, less bags to carry, etc.); however, once I felt him chomp on my finger, I decided that my body didn't need that much pain...the pump is much sweeter to me (treats me like a lady). He also had his first time since birth that he has missed a poo day...this guy is extremely regular, so this is a little change for us (he is on day three of no poos)...we wonder if the Zantac is making him constipated. We are waiting for the big poop out, and we sure it will happen at church tonight (lucky them). He got his first ride in Bjorn facing out...he loved it! He has also decided that his new, favorite thing is the mobile in his crib...he can just lay in there and watch it...he squeals in delight and has the biggest smile for his "alien" looking friends.

We (or I should say me) are failing at trusting the Lord and waiting on Him. I can tell you that it is so frustrating when your child will not eat, but is pulls at your patience. We know God is so good and with Him all things are possible (Matt. 19:26), but we need to constantly turn back to Him. It is very easy to look away from the cross and look to everything else. We know God is teaching us so much through all of this and we pray (pray and pray) that our hearts will listen to Him.

Thanks to you all for your prayers! We hope everyone is doing well!