Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Littler One

I mentioned several weeks ago that Asher was a screamer and that we were hopefully on our way to figuring out why.

Well.. we have figured out why it seems, but no thanks to anyone on this side of the pond. After this medicine and that medicine, this doctor and that pediatrician, nothing really seemed to be making a difference. He still wasn’t gaining weight and was spending far more time unhappy (read: screaming) than happy.

I was at my wit’s end and was just trying really hard to be patient. I learned with Aed that a lot of things with babies just take a little time to pass, but his low weight gain was really unsettling. Aed never had that same trouble.

Enter: My Dear Old Dad. He had suggested (amongst other things that in retrospect seem like very reasonable suggestions compared to what we were told here) trying to give Asher some formula to see if maybe he was just hungry. I was doubtful that this was the problem. I knew we made hungry babies that nurse all the time, but I was able to successfully nurse Aed for 13 months with no problems. I figured that meant I’d be able to do the same each time.

I tried giving him formula twice, and the first time he played the ‘push it out of your mouth’ game with his tongue and didn’t seem interested. The second time he looked at me like I had just tried to shove a handful of dirt in his mouth. So I continued assuming this wasn’t the issue. We knew he’d take a bottle, so I figured if he was really that hungry, he would have eaten the formula.

So on we went.. Meeting with a doctor every week (a doctor whom I really love and appreciate, actually), and discussing changes and possibilities. And then a few weekends ago in a conversation with my dad on a particularly bad day, he suggested we get a different formula (sans dairy since it upsets his tummy) and make sure to warm it up before we give it to him. I quickly passed this message on to Ian before he headed home, desperate for something to work!

After some coaxing, he took to it and viola! He drank over an ounce! Over the course of that weekend the amount he drank jumped to 3-5 extra ounces per day. The next Monday he had gained 6 ounces, as opposed to his usual two or three for the week. After a full week of being supplemented with formula, not only was he happy as a clam, but he had put on almost a full pound in one week! It seems we found our problem.

It makes so much sense now and I am still baffled that no one here suggested it to me. He’s not gaining weight? Perhaps it’s related to what he’s eating! Genius!

So apparently my milk supply has not been sufficient this time around to keep him growing well. It’s hard saying why precisely, but his low weight gain started at a similar time to when I started running. It’s possible that running just put too much stress on my body.. but it’s also possible that I just don’t have a really strong supply. Who knows.

So our approach now is to nurse first to try to keep my supply up for as long as possible, and to supplement after so he gets his fill. Most likely my milk will gradually taper off, but we’re going to keep it going as long as we can so he gets the benefits of breastmilk.

This does make things way more complicated. I am doing pretty much everything you can do to feed an infant.. nursing, pumping, and bottle feeding, so keeping him fed is keeping us on our toes. But, we are all much, much, much happier and healthier this way, so a little extra hassle is no problem!

We are so enjoying our now almost 4 month old! He is just a cheery little guy and super social. He’s a great little brother and takes an obvious interest in Aed any time he’s in view. 

He loves his Mama and calms right down anytime Daddy is holding him. 

Who says you need necks?? We say who needs 'em!

He’s getting big fast now and is starting to reach for things and LOVES holding on as tight as he can to any piece of cloth he can find. He’s totally going to be a blankie boy :) 

He’s getting adorably vocal and is just now starting to laugh, which I love.

I am not a huge fan of the newborn period.. but whoa is roly-poly-baby-dom ever fun!


  1. Those little babies sure come with their mysteries, eh? I'm glad you've found something to make little man happy - and thereby, everyone else, too. I've heard things about exercise changing milk, like if the taste changed, maybe he was taking less and your supply dropped. Too bad he couldn't just explain it to you. ;-) "Hey, Mama..."

  2. Tell me about it, Kristin! I can't tell you how many times I lamented that he couldn't just tell me what was wrong! :)