Friday, March 30, 2007

Bottle Battle

Okay so it has been decided Joy must take a bottle. So this weekend we are going to make her take the bottle. She will starve until she eats from the bottle.
Friday Night:
Sounds like right now Daddy is working on getting her to take a bottle of freshly pumped milk. The bottle I know will be one struggle and formula vs. milk another. I am going to continue to pump all weekend and give her milk in addition to some formula. I don't really know what will happen all I know is we are prepared for a horrible long weekend of fussy Joy.
It sounds like she has calmed down a little at the moment. I guess hunger has already gotten the best of her, she likes the nipple, or knowing it's milk and not formula is okay. She and Daddy are quiet right now, so maybe this is working? I am staying out until I hear an all clear from Daddy.
It's working she has only had the bottle since last night (including her nighttime feeding). I am amazed how easily it has worked. She has had mainly breast milk from the bottle but we have also mixed in some formula to the milk. It started as I was adding the formula just for taste, but since I am only able to pump about 3oz total every 3 hours and a 6 month old (I was told) should be eating 4-6oz I have started adding about an ounce of mixed formula to the milk.
My new worry, she isn't eating very much. I know it's there so it's not a supply issue (she will eat 1-2oz each feeding). I don't know if it is a taste thing since we are adding the formula (she has outright refused a formula only bottle). It could also be that is all she wants to eat. Anyway I know we will be on the phone with the doctor on Monday morning.
Unless something else major develops I declare the bottle battle won by Daddy! (I haven't even tried to give her the bottle). Yeah Daddy!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

6 months and counting

In theory I was going to sit and write this blog last Wednesday or Thursday. Joy had her 6 month birthday on Monday, but I was waiting until her doctor's appointment on Wednesday to update everyone. The hold up was Joy did not have a good Wednesday appointment as I hoped, and was fussy after her shots so I never really had a chance to sit and write. I was too upset about her still not making the doctor happy with her weight gain. I don't want to spoil everything in the first paragraph so to learn more you must read more...

Joy's first half a year was very good she is learning more each day. In fact on the Saturday before her 6 month birthday she would roll over after a couple seconds of sitting on her bottom. On Sunday she miraculously would go for about half a minute at time and then tumble over. Monday she would go about a minute sometimes a little less sometimes a little more. Tuesday is where she really shocked me. We had her 6 month pictures and she sat through the entire photo session. One time she looked like she might tumble and I righted her in the first couple minutes of the shoot, but after that she sat up nice and pretty all on her own! I was amazed with her! She's such a big girl!! That is Joy's little milestone miracle.

Joy has also become very adapt at reaching for everything! While on the floor she will look at a toy and reach for it grabbing it about 75% of the time. While in our laps she will grab at whatever we have in our hands in addition to her. She really loves to grab at our drinks and she doesn't care what is in the cup she has almost had a taste of Dr. Pepper more than once. If I am drinking water, I gladly try and share some with her, only to get a look like hey Mom what are you doing I just want to lick this thing. It is awful cute, I think Daddy has some pictures of her doing this, if not we will make sure we get some.

Joy had her 6 month appointment at the doctor on Wednesday last week. She weighed 13lbs, 10oz, which is 5oz more than 2 weeks ago, but the doctor was still not impressed. Apparently she is in the 10-20% for her weight and 50% for her height. All I know is she is doing what she is supposed to be doing so I am happy about that. If she wasn't I would be more of a nervous wreck than I already am. Anyway the rest of the appointment went fine. Joy got her shots and did pretty good with only a little fussing and unhappiness for about 24 hours. I left the appointment okay, but not completely happy. I was looking for an okay she did great you can stop the formula feedings. Instead I was asked how much she was getting and when I did it, and didn't get a firm continue or don't continue from the doctor. Well guilt got to me on Friday after Joy had been a little fussy after eating all day Thursday and I called and asked the doctor should I be continuing the formula feedings. The answer was what I feared yes I should still be doing that. So we started again, and Joy screams every time. I am not doing it as much as I should if we are out I don't do it, if we have company I don't always do it. Also if I don't want to I don't do it. I know this is bad, and I have this battle raging in my head, which is worse strapping her down and forcing this formula into her (ask anyone who has seen me do it it's horrible) or letting her starve. I asked if their were any better ways to do this other than the syringe, and the nurse (who I love) didn't really have any great suggestions. I also asked if it would be better just to formula feed her since I apparently can't give her all she needs. Wouldn't a couple days of fighting to get her to learn to eat/drink from a bottle be better than this baby torture every 3 hours? The nurse said as long as I was willing to continue to breast feed. I am continuing and as of this afternoon I am determined to give her the formula every feeding (except middle of the night).

Pray for me as this is tearing me up I hate it. I feel like a bad mom that I can't feed my child. It is a combination of many things in my head. The obvious being that I don't have the milk anymore, I am sure it's something I have done that has created the shortage of milk. I also feel guilty for her not taking a bottle. She took one at one point, but while trying to figure out what I ate that was making her fussy I stopped the bottles and now she refuses them. It's also so hard to make her take the formula, she screams like she does for shots, but unlike shots it lasts allot longer, and she gets this look in her eyes like why mommy why. I can't answer it either, it is killing me to do it, but I love my doctor and trust this is the right thing.

I am sure you are thinking what about solids, how is that going. Well when I thought she wasn't eating before I was wrong, I could at least get 1-2 spoonfuls in her before. Now I can get nothing to go in her mouth. She is very adapt at closing her mouth and keeping it closed. She won't even taste what I have for her. So I am taking a vacation from the solids for a few days. I know I am tense about trying to feed her and that doesn't help anything. So I am stopping why should I continue to waste time and money on this food she doesn't eat. I plan to start up again when I think I can do it without feeling pressure to make her eat. Another part of this whole thing and feeding her like I have been is I have in the back of my head this terrible thought that because I am doing this forcing her to eat and not letting her figure this stuff out she will have the same eating problems I do. I don't want her to struggle with weight all her life, I want eating to be a good thing, and not something horrible, but that is what it is right now something horrible.

On that note she is awake from her nap, and it's time for her to eat. Pray for us.
The picture is Joy playing with her cousin Clarissa

Monday, March 19, 2007

Crazy Weekend

Okay the crazy weekend is over, and the party was a success. Joy had a great weekend other than when I had to feed her the formula through a syringe. This is a picture of her playing nicely on the carpet at her great grandmother's. She was very happy to lay and play most of the day. She did of course have Grand Lady come and play with her for part of the day. I don't know who was happier about that, Joy or my Mom! The cake ended up taking all day to decorate, but was a huge success at the party, everyone loved the look and the taste of the cake. I was just happy to have it done! Here is a picture of the cake, and just for reference on size the cake board is 3.5ft x4ft.
The actual party was also a success, my Mom had a wonderful time and so did the guest (as far as we could tell). Here is a picture of Joy at the party (it was on St. Patty's Day) and a "generations picture" which includes Joy, me, Vicki (my sister), My Mom and my Grandmother (who turns 90 in September).

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Another Day

Wow it is nice to just have a relaxing day today. By relaxing I mean we had no where we *had* to be. We did go to the Mommy & Me at the hospital and then to lunch with that group. We then went to the grocery store where Joy was able to sleep through most of that trip. Rob will be glad to know we again have food in our home. (It was getting pretty scarce)
We are now at home and Joy is taking a nap in her bed. She has had a decent day she woke up about 7:30 and had some milkies (our name for breast milk) then she played and we tried to have some peaches mixed with rice cereal. It was not a hit, but I got a couple spoonfuls in her. We also tried the syringe feeding thing. That was definitely not a hit this morning! Before I actually squeezed it in her mouth she liked this new thing, but as soon as it produced the formula she screamed. The first time we tried was in the high chair. We then tried later as she was done having her milkies she was laying on the floor and playing when I tried again. Still not too happy with this. I am determined for something to work though so we will see the doctor is going to call on Monday to see how this is going.
This afternoon I decided it can't hurt to try and feed her again while she is in a good mood, about an hour after she had milkies and we aren't doing anything else. So I decided let me put the sippy lid on the bottle I mixed formula in, and see how she likes that. She loves to chew on the sippy cup but hasn't figured out how or why something sometimes comes out. She has gotten better about swallowing whatever it is that comes out so their is hope here. She didn't seem to mind that it was a new taste int he sippy cup so I will continue this "trick" instead of the syringe which she hated. She also had some more applesauce which she was not happy about, but I got about a tablespoon worth of food in her. She seems to be better at refusing the spoon fed foods, but I am determined. Pray for us as we try our hardest to get her to gain weight.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

My Family

The Lybarger family is small we are made of 3 at this time. Joy our precious baby girl, Rob the wonderful Dad and husband, and me a stay at home Mom who is busier than I ever imagined I could be.
Joy is soon to be 6 months old (Monday the 19th) and has been a healthy happy baby most of her life. She is currently mastering the art of sitting up. She is also become a talker recently and will tell you stories all day long if you will listen (and sometimes if you won't). If anyone knows baby and can decipher her chatter please contact me. She is also grabbing at objects more and more, and when out of her seat in restaurants she is grabbing for everything! She really likes hot plates, and knives. She is also very fond of whatever you are drinking. This could be anything, but I have started to allow her to drink the water that I try to drink plenty of.
Joy is having one problem and that is she is having difficulty gaining weight. This has caused me great stress as I want my baby to be perfect. We started solids at 5 months when she had only gained 5oz in about 20 days. We went back to the doctor 3 weeks later because she is not really interested in the solids and she had lost an ounce. I know an ounce is the difference in a clean or dirty diaper, but still she should not have lost weight or stayed the same weight in 3 weeks time! So I was referred to a lactation consultant and rented a pump. I was to pump for 24 hours then let the doctor know what I got. I got nothing! She apparently is getting all the milk their is to have. So the next step is now to give her an ounce of formula after each feeding. Have I mentioned she won't take a bottle? We have started trying a sippy cup with some water in it, but it mainly ends up on her not in her. She does enjoy it though so that is good news. The doctor recommended a syringe for feeding Joy. So we will begin that tomorrow. I will let you know how that goes.