Thursday, June 24, 2010

Another Change

McKenna's retching continue to increase and so does our stress. We are fed up with the episodes and feel completely helpless when it comes to resolving this for McKenna. We want answers and can't seem to get any from doctors or research. And the only answer that does seem to continue to show up is slow down the feeds, decrease the quantity.

So with her retching nearly doubling over the past few weeks, today I caved in and have agreed to slow down her feeds so it will take an hour for her to receive full feed. It is really hard for me to do that and makes me so sad, but every time she retches I just want to cry, so willing to slow it down if this could possibly help.

I am not caving in altogether though. While I did slow down the feed I increased the quantity. She was getting 160 ml at 280 ml/hr three times a day with a six hour night feed of 210 ml. In an attempt to help her feel and understand hunger our goal is to eliminate the night feed completely. So today while changing it to an hour long feed I increased the quantity to 200 ml she will get at 220 ml/hr three times a day with a 10 pm feed of 120 ml over about 45 minutes. So she should be completely done with her night feed by 11 pm. I am anxious and nervous to try this. Hopeful this will increase appetite and help get her going on eating, but a little fearful as it is always scary to try something new.

If nothing else, we are hoping that the cord not sticking in her belly all night will help her sleep better. McKenna still is not sleeping well and that is such a crucial part of development...good sleep.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Their First Swim

The inlaws have a neighborhood pool and I have been itching to take the babies in it since they both love bath time so much. Planned to go when my mom was here, then when Ashlee was here and neither of those times worked and Susie offered to watch a baby while I took the other one swimming. While this wasn't ideal to do it one at a time, I was willing to do whatever needed to get them in the water.

So, today it's 95 out and the sun is scorching down on us and Susie watched the babies while I ran errands. When I got home she asked if we were going to do the pool today, so I jumped at the opportunity. Got the babies all ready after their lunch, loaded the sunscreen and met Susie at the pool to find her wearing JEAN capris and a tshirt. I assumed she wouldn't do a bathing suit, but was surprised she was wearing jeans.

Anyhow, we got up to the swim area and they have a covered table area and she laid a towel down and said she would sit with one baby while I took the other to the pool. I feel bad because I was a little rude, but it's 95 DEGREES and a baby sitting out in the shade in that weather just wasn't acceptable to me, so I said, okay well let me get McKenna use to the water, then I will come grab Keaton and just take them both swimming at the same time. Susie agreed.

Luckily though within a few minuets of me having McKenna in the water susie was sitting with her feet in the water and holding Keaton between her legs so he could sit in the water too. SO long story longer, we got both babies in the pool at the same time. They loveeeed it. They kicked, splashed, cooed, and had a grand time. We only stayed there about 45 minutes but it was perfect. I am so blessed to have a mother-in-law that is eager to help and that loves her grandbabies so much! Can't wait for our next pool trip.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

What a Month

This month has been crazy busy and filled with a lot of joy, stress, and sickness.

Mom and Mandie came to visit mid-May. It was great to see Mom and the kids ate up every minute and word she shared with them. She laughed the entire time at all that they do; she helped with changing diapers, feeding the kids, and tiring them out for good naps. She even was able to witness Keaton's first steps.

Mandie was "sick" the entire time, so she slept most of it, spent her time outside or working on a contract for her daycare. It was a real disappointment to us that we flew her here and then she hardly spent any time with us. Praying she gets better by Christmas so we can enjoy her.

Keaton got sick and had a temperature of 103 for four days. He puke all over the living room floor a couple times, ate little food, was fussy and didn't sleep well. He lost a few ounces which doesn't sound like a lot but it really thinned out his belly. Luckily after the virus passed though he was back to his playful energetic self.

Keaton loves Kraft Macaroni and Cheese and eats huge spoonfuls, sometimes not even taking time to chew before swallowing. He loves breakfast bars too - his favorite is blueberry. He still eats yogurt continually - vanilla bean fluffy is 160 calories so we do that to help him maintain his weight. He will occasionally eat spaghettios although he is getting sick of them. And that's about the extent of his diet...mainly because I have no idea what to feed him and I am not that healthy of an eater, so we really need to work on that. May try Chicken strips this week, although a bit nervous he will choke on them.

Keaton took his first step mid-May and loves the challenge of learning to walk. He smiles ear to ear, claps his hands and giggles when he takes a step without holding on to anything, or if he stands without holding. Last night he took 6 steps and daddy was even there to witness it.

Keaton is starting to get very possessive and jealous. He doesn't like it when McKenna gets a toy, book or attention. Apparently he thinks we should ignore her and pay attention to only him. He fusses, cries and throws a little tantrum which we just ignore. And occasionally he goes over and hits McKenna now...luckily for her though she is starting to get the drive to fight back, so I don't imagine he will continue bullying her for long. But that's a tricky I let him take toys from her and hit her because she needs to learn to stand up for herself, or do I punish him? I end up doing a little of both. My mom says we need to spend more time teaching them to share. I say they need to learn that if they want something they should go for it. And McKenna getting to play with a toy and Keaton trying to take it, well shouldn't she let him take it so she learns to share too? The tricks of parenting...hmmm.

Keaton is our little comedian. He is so funny and makes us laugh on a continual basis. The way he eats, facial expressions, noises, laughs, games, aggression...just about everything he does he seems to be looking for a positive reaction from it.

McKenna is a spitball. She is very stubborn, just like her mommy. She knows what she wants and fusses or whimpers until she gets it. She has a devious grin and always looks like she is plotting something. She raises just one eyebrow to get her point across. It's very comical.

McKenna still retches a lot (average 5 times a day) and it's stressful on us that there hasn't been any improvement with that. We are working on cutting out her night feed to see if that helps since a majority of her retches are during morning. To do that though it means increasing quantity during day feeds and that doesn't go over well with her. Is causing a few more retches than normal, but she is also sick so that could be why retching has increased. But currently we are doing feeds every 4 1/2 hours...8:30 am, 1 pm, 5:30 pm, 10 pm, 2:30 am...makes for a long day/night.

McKenna is doing a lot better on her bites. She is taking 35 breakfast, 45 lunch and dinner. Bites are getting a little bigger to where i would call them bites, not just tastes, and she is actually starting to open her mouth for a majority of them. Although she still spits most of the food out of her mouth rather than swallowing it. Again, since she is sick right now is struggling more with the bites. Only was able to get her to take three bites this morning and she retched after each one, so we stopped.

So McKenna has the cold Keaton had a couple weeks ago. Her temp has been around 102 and it is going on day three. I think her fever is finally breaking, but she cries when she coughs so most likely has a sore and swollen throat.

It has been difficult because for the first 12 months we were discouraged from bringing them in public or having people over. Now we are allowed to do that stuff, but if we do it we know they are going to be sick all the time because they haven't built up an immune system. SO, we will continue to bring them out, although Kyle would prefer we don't, and hopefully by the time we get to Flu Season Fall we will have a little more cushion and they will be stronger.

McKenna started sessions with the new Speech Therapist last Friday at Myer Center - No more Oxford Home Health. During the evaluation I did the feeding, and then again during the first session. Curious to see if that is how it will always be. Makes since for me to do the feeding since I am the one that does it at home, but the woman didn't give me any direction or advice, other than to follow what First Steps is telling me to do. Not sure what her thinking is behind that, but hoping to get courage to say something if that is how it is again this week. Don't really care to waste our time, energy and money if all I am doing is taking her to a different location so I can feed and someone can sit and watch without helping. She is suppose to be the best...not sure who has deemed her as that.

We start with the new Physical Therapist on June 22 so we are really excited about that and one of our friend's sons sees this PT and says how amazing she is, so that makes me a bit more hopeful than I am about the ST.

The kids went to their first bday party for a friend. It was a lot of fun, but a lot of work getting them there and out. Not sure how I could have done it without Kyle! He was a trooper and a huge help. And THAT has been our month. Hoping for a healthier and more productive next thirty days