Our Skinny Minnie

Kate is on the whole a happy girl... except when it’s time to eat. I was breastfeeding exclusively, and Kate would scream after just a few minutes. (This was the case from the beginning, before she ever got a bottle. It got worse after I came back to work and she was getting 2 bottles a day.) I knew she wasn’t getting enough when I nursed her, but she seemed to have cute little baby fat rolls and was growing, so I tried not to worry about it. Boy was I wrong. When we went to the doctor for her 4 month appointment, she had only gained 1 pound in two months! She had dropped two growth curves on the weight chart. For length, she continued to be in the 95th percentile. Tall and skinny – she takes after Nick! The doctor said to try supplementing to see if her hunger was satisfied or not. Or not was right. I was bottle feeding her another 4 ounces at least after attempted feedings. She continued to scream while I nursed her, and would calm down as soon as I gave her the bottle. The bottle was easier, and I didn’t want to battle anymore. I stopped breastfeeding. I feel like such a failure, but it’s what seemed right. It hasn’t turned out to be the magic answer, but at least she's eating more. I took her back in for a quick weight check a couple of weeks later, and she had gained 2 pounds, 4 ounces! Yea, Kate!

We experimented a little with formula. She got a rash after having a little of it one day. I told the doctor, and he said to have some Benadryl on hand when I tried it again. I figured it was just a skin irritation from the formula, though, because it was only around her mouth. Ooooh, no – wrong again. A few nights ago Kate took her first full bottle of formula. 8 entire ounces down the hatch. She got the rash around her mouth again, and I figured it was fine. I try so hard not to be that mom who is worried about every little thing. I guess I should have worried, because when I went to get her from her nap, she was covered head to toe with hives. As I lifted her out of her crib she proceeded to vomit her entire feeding. (Well, almost the entire feeding. She saved some to vomit the next hour.) We gave her the Benadryl and listened to her breathing really closely. She seemed fine. She slept with us that night, and by morning, all her hives were gone. I was so thankful that Nick was home that night – he’s been out of town a ton. I would have been really freaked out if he weren’t there. All this to say Kate has a milk protein allergy.

Now we're trying to figure out if we should use the Nutramigen (the ultra expensive hypoallergenic stuff) or soy. The N. seems to cause discomfort - she arches back all the time now. The soy is much cheaper, but she doesn't like the taste very well. If we can go with the soy, so much the better, but we might be able to get insurance to cover the cost of the N.

Pray for us as we try and figure all of this out. Can you tell this is weighing on my mind constantly? I just wish there was a magic answer! The positive thing is that she's now gaining weight, even if she still doesn't have the best appetite. I'll probably go back next week sometime for another weight check.