Tuesday, September 28, 2010

When to start solids?

Baby A turned five months old Sunday. He is still exclusivly breastfed. Expect for the doses of Tylenol after the vacinations (one was oral) and the gentian violet, he has never had anything other than milk in his mouth.

Well, there was that one time when he was two months old, and his Aunt thought that he wanted watermelon. She put watermelon juice on her finger and stuck it in his mouth. Twice.

I was not happy.

This is the aunt that has a child. The aunt that flipped out when her baby (who was already eating solids) was given an oreo cookie. Now, I understand, watermelon is the lesser of two evils. But baby A is not eating solids of any kind.

Then there is my mother.

My sisters and I were started on rice cereal around 3 months old. So she is less than pleased that baby A hasn't started solids yet. She keeps pushing it. She was pretty sure we would come home from his four month checkup and announce that his pediatrician recommended us starting him on solids. But no such luck.

So that brings us to this weekend. My mom gave baby A frosting. I'm not sure how much. But it really got to me. To the point that I teared up a bit.

Did I overreact? Maybe.

I know she means well. I know that she is excited because this is her first Grandbaby. And she does so much for us. She watches him whenever we need her to. She spoils him like crazy. She loves him silly. I know she does everything out of love.

So, where do you draw the line? What battles do you fight and what do you let slide?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Nursing at Graduation

I was recently asked to be a guest blogger for cloth diaper addiction. She is doing a series on nursing. I thought a long time about what to write, and finally settled on a blog about nursing support. It was a toss up between that and nursing in public.

I don't think enough people talk about nursing in public. It is a huge milestone for a breastfeeding mom. A lot of my breastfeeding friends will pump to go out so they don't have to lift their shirt in front of strangers.

I'll admit, the first time I did I wasn't very prepared. My son was less than two weeks old and we were out watching my sister Dutch Dance at the Tulip Time Festival. We had just gotten done getting my son's newborn pictures done and he was hungry. So I just sat down on the sidewalk and prepared to nurse.

My sister saw what I was about to do and gawked in horror. "You are NOT going to just whip them out for the whole world to see are you?!?!!?!" Her comment really got to me. I wore two shirts like most other women will advise. One to pull up, one to keep my tummy covered. I even put my stroller directly behind me to block the view of anyone standing in the grass behind me. What my sister didn't realize is that her comment made me so frazzled, that I couldn't relax enough to get my son to latch on.

That's when my mother stepped in.

It was the beginning of May and still chilly, so I had brought a couple of blankets. So she grabbed a blanket to help me cover up. I felt so embarrassed to have my mom standing there holding a blanket over me. My face was red, my son was hungry and fussy, and I just couldn't get things right. I ended up mostly giving up and nursing in the car. (Not as easy as I thought. A Ford Focus was not meant for a car seat AND a mom nursing in the back seat. I may have covered the window with milk)

After that, I refused to leave my house for more than an hour and a half. I was not going to feed baby A anywhere other than the privacy of my own house. (The only exception to that was at my mom's house. I could nurse perfectly fine in front of my family.)

Then came my aforementioned sister's graduation from high school. Almost a month to the day since my last NIP attempt, I was going to be in a stadium surrounded by hundreds of people for at least two hours. I knew this was my best chance to get over my fear. First, my sister would not be around to make comments. Second, it was my sister's graduation. I wasn't going to miss it!

This time, I set myself up for success. I practiced at home and worked on coving up with my shirt. Baby A never liked a blanket or cover. Even at home, he would wiggle and try to get out from underneath it. I gave up trying and worked with what I had. I also attended a nursing support group once a week, and saw how other mom's didn't use blankets, but that I really couldn't see any of them at all once baby was latched on. And latching on only took a second or two. I practiced undoing my nursing tank and sliding it down only when baby A was at my breast ready to open his mouth and latch on. I even found the best place to put my nursing pad was to tuck it just inside the cup of the tank on the side I wasn't nursing on.

When my son began showing signs of hunger, I realized I had missed on minor (ok major) detail. Graduation was held at the football stadium. We were in the stadium seats. That means that people were be sitting behind/above me looking down at the field...and my boobs.

I took a deep breath, and proceeded to go through all the steps I had practiced. Elbowing the 20-something guy sitting behind me. Oops. I took another deep breath and continued. I got my son latched on. YAY! I nursed him through the opening speeches. I laughed at the great stories told. (The valedictorian made life comparisons to Sponge Bob Square Pants. I won't be forgetting that speech any time soon)

When my sister's name was called to receive her diploma, I was holding a sleeping, content baby, who slept right through my cheers for her.

I've been nursing in public without fear ever since.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

First time Thrush Part 2

The verdict:

Gentian Violet is worth the wild goose chase. One "dose" did the trick!

I diluted the Gentian Violet by mixing one teaspoon GV and one teaspoon water. (The internet said that 2% is too strong and can leave ulcers in baby's mouth). I used a Q-tip and "painted" the inside of A's mouth and tongue. Poor guy has never had anything other than breastmilk (and one dose of Tylenol at his last round of shots) and this weekend he has had Tylenol, a oral vaccination, and now Gentian Violet. He was not too pleased with the taste of it. He gave me the most pathetic look I have ever seen!!!!

Anyways, right after I painted his mouth I fed him. The intention was to pass on some of the GV to me. But when I took him off, I didn't see any one me. But I wasn't having any symptoms myself, so I didn't bother to go get another Q-tip and paint myself.

It wasn't as messy as what I thought it was going to be. I had no staining of A's clothes. But he is a spitter, so I am working on getting a few purple stains out of some burp cloths. :)

After about 24 hours, he didn't look like he ate a grape Popsicle anymore and the white had vanished along with the purple!

I did run all of the binkies and toys that he chews on through the dishwasher twice.

Looks like we made it through!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

First time thrush

I've heard all about it. But it has usually just gone in one ear and out the other. Right along with everything about sore and cracked nipples. It just didn't apply to me. And if it didn't apply to me, I didn't really care that much. But now I'm regretting it a bit. Ok, a lot.

That's right. My poor baby has thrush.

I attend a weekly breastfeeding support group at a local hospital. They talk about thrush at least twice a month. I have only missed two sessions sense my son was born. So I have heard a lot about it. But I never really worried about it. I am past the sore and cracked nipples, so I didn't think I had anything to worry about.

And then Andrew got some white patches on his tongue. On a day that his pediatrician has off. So I went to KellyMom to find out everything that I could about it. There was a lot off good advice there, but sometimes, you can have too much information. So while I was waiting to the doctor's office to figure out which on call to call, my mom called. Apparently, my youngest sister got thrush all the time. As she was telling me all about failing with Nysatin and finally using the "old fashion" treatment that the doctor told her about as a last resort I remembered my sister having purple lips all the time.

Thus began the "wild goose chase" for Gentian Violet. My doctor told the nurse to tell me to use Lotrmin. When I asked her about Gentian Violet, she told me that my doctor said it was an option, but that it is very hard to find in this area.

He was right. I spent two hours on the phone. I started with every health food store in the area. After I called everyone, I moved on to pharmacies. I was working my way down my list when my husband called. He picked up a prescription at a pharmacy by his work, and they didn't have any in stock. He was going to try stopping by one more on his way home. On his way to the one he was going to try, he saw a Rite Aid on the same side of the road that he was on. So he pulled in there randomly. And they had it!!!

We will see how it works tomorrow!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Another trip with cloth diapers

I am back! My computer was unavailable for a while. But now I'm back!

A and I went on our first out of state trip with cloth diapers last month. We are about to do it again tomorrow. This time we are bringing my husband! :) We are headed up to see my side of the family. Most of whom have not met A yet. I'm super excited. I'm much more confident in this trip than the last one.

1. I know I'm not going to be away from A this trip. Last time was a business trip. My sister came along to watch A while I was in seminars all weekend. I'm so excited I don't have to bring any milk or my pump with me. It's so much less stress not having to figure out how much milk to pack!

2. My husband is coming with me this time. This means that I don't have to drive this time! I can sleep while he drives! Maybe my first nap in quite a LONG time. :)

3. This trip is more for relaxation. Baby A is going to get to meet my extended family for the first time. I get to see my family for the first time in a long time. The last time my husband and I went up was last January for my Grandparent's 50 year anniversary.

4. I know that cloth diapers on a road trip is not that bad. The last trip, A had two explosions on the way down to Cincinnati. The van did not stink at all. :) I had read a lot about people complaining their car stunk on a road trip with cloth diaper. But we road for 7 hours with at least one dirty diaper, and neither of us noticed a stink.

5. I've done it before, so I know what to expect. Doesn't it always seem that it's more scary to do something you have never done before? This time, I've done it before. I know babies can change and are unpredictable, but I have high hopes for this trip. So I'm much more relaxed.

It feels good to be back! Expect much more great posts soon!