Marc and I have been married since October 14, 2005. We dated 4 years before taking the plunge! On December 14, 2007 we were blessed with our little girl Abigail (Abby). She weighed a healthy 8lbs 15ounces. She came a week before her due date. (I was induced) She is a sassy 4 year old and always keeps us laughing. On September 9, 2011 our sweet baby boy, Matthew, arrived weighing an even healthier 9 lbs 6 oz. We also have a dog (Layla) and a cat (Sissy). We moved into a new home in North Phoenix in May of 2007. It was so fun to watch the progress of it being built. Hard to believe we have already lived here 4 years. We are still changing paint colors on the walls! The picture above is from our trip to Kauai in 2006 for our one year wedding anniversary. Can't wait to go back again someday when the kiddos are a little older! I started this fun little blog so friends and family can stay updated on what is going on with us (since I am so horrible about making phone calls and sending e-mails). Hope you enjoy!
That's right, my baby boy is 3/4 of the way through his first year of life. So I will share a little about what Matthew, aka Matty, aka Bud Bud, aka little buddy, aka Matty boo, aka Matta, aka Sparty is up to these days. Well, for some reason our happy little guy disappeared sometime in his 6th month. I am still trying to figure out why he seems so unhappy most days. I just find it so hard to believe that his happy, easy going personality just disappeared basically overnight. Don't get me wrong, he still has plenty of happy moments and I can usually get a smile out of him, they just don't last long. He really isn't content most days for more than 10 minutes at a time before he begins to fuss and then all out cry. He isn't a fan of the swing, exersaucer or jumparoo. Most of the time he is somewhat content when we go out somewhere, so needless to say we definitely get out of the house EVERY day. I have really tried to figure out what it could be and I am at a loss. His reflux seems to be as controlled as it is going to get and I don't notice many of the obvious signs of the reflux anymore. Although, with "silent reflux" sometimes there are no signs other than the baby obviously being in pain. The only sign I ever had with Abby's reflux was her refusal to eat when she wasn't taking her Zantac. I wonder a lot if it isn't actually the Prevacid that he is on that is causing him to be so grumpy most of the time. Not much I can do about it though until he outgrows this nasty reflux. The other day I thought I would try to give him a bottle without thickening his formula. Yeah, not a good idea. His "silent" reflux apparently wouldn't be so silent anymore without the thickener. He threw up 5 times in the next two hours. Guess the thickener really is helping to keep things down. I just wonder if it isn't still coming up his esophagus into his throat but not all the way out. For now we have done pretty much everything we can do for him and it is just a waiting game as we pray every day that he outgrows it when he starts walking and we can put this all behind us!
Sleeping: Unfortunately sleeping hasn't improved since my last post. It has actually gone downhill a bit. He takes two naps now after starting to scream all the way through the third one everyday when he was 7 1/2 months. His naps are typically anywhere from 1 to 1.5 hours, which I can't complain too much about since Abby was the queen of half hour naps at this age. However, Abby was sleeping 12-13 hours at night. Matthew...not so much! Things went a little downhill when I stopped swaddling him and he got his DOC band all in the same week. He is always up between 3am and 5am. The only thing that gets him to calm down and go back to sleep is a bottle. So he gets 5 oz during the night still, which I am sure his pediatrician will tell me is not necessary at his appointment tomorrow. The worst part is that he doesn't just go right back to sleep after his bottle. He doesn't cry once he has had the bottle(SOOOO thankful for that) but he just can't get back to sleep. He just rolls around his crib usually taking an hour to go back to sleep and sometimes only for a half hour. Most days he is up for good between 6am and 6:30am. If he doesn't wake up for his bottle before 5 am he usually does not go back to sleep at all after he has it. Seems like a simple solution right? Just don't go in and give him a bottle when he wakes. Only problem is I am 95% sure he would not go back to sleep at all without that bottle which means I have an even crankier baby that has been up since 4am. He also has to have his Prevacid on an empty stomach at least 30 minutes before his bottle. He is already a cranky beast waiting to get his bottle after I get him up in the morning, I can't even imagine how much fun he would be if he hadn't at least had that 5oz a few hours before. I hope to at least try some sort of sleep training next month when Marc is home for a long weekend, as I will need his help entertaining a very angry baby who has been awake since 3 or 4 am. I feel like I have to at least try to help him learn to sleep through that time every morning though. He is just not getting enough sleep at night, even with a 6:15 bedtime. (And yes, I have tried putting him to bed later and he still wakes and the same time and gets even less sleep. :( ) I just really don't want to be getting up at night still with an 18 month old, which is my fear if we don't try to change this waking habit. Ahhhh, the joys of parenthood! Good thing we love love love this kid to pieces! Boy, was I spoiled with Abby!
Movement: We have some!!!! Last month he started army crawling and is getting better at it every day. Just this week he finally started using both sides of his body instead of just his right leg and left arm. I am hopeful that soon he will be up on all fours crawling. I think this will help him to stay a little more content because he can get where he wants to go much faster and won't be putting so much pressure on his belly and possibly aggravating his reflux. I just cannot wait for him to walk for so many reasons! And no I will never wish for him to be less mobile :) When you have a baby with health concerns, it completely changes how you look at things. When he is all over the place getting into things it means he has the health and physical ability to do so!
Eating: This little guy's digestive system continues to stump us! He still gets very little baby food for a couple reasons. #1) He just isn't all that interested. He will eat a tablespoon or two and then not want anymore, yet still be willing to suck down 7 oz of formula right after. #2) He hasn't tolerated many foods very well. The only foods we have found that his system seems to tolerate are sweet potatoes and pears. Our food trials also keep getting messed up by sickness and ear infections so I am never quite sure if it is the sickness, ear infection, antibiotics or food messing with him. It has been a very slow process. He also doesn't not handle anything other than purees. He will gag and throw up on only a tiny little piece of a puff. Needless to say I have learned to only try when he has an empty stomach. So, for now, his main source of nutrition still comes from his elemental formula.
Despite all of our difficulties with this sweet boy, I feel so blessed everyday to have him. Even with all his fussing and crying he brings a smile to my face every single day and it is fun to watch his personality emerging during his "happy" times! He is so much different that Abby was and I am a little worried for what my future holds. I think I am in for it with this one. I certainly don't see him sleeping happily in his crib until he is over 3 years old like his sister. I am willing to bet he has climbed out before his second birthday. He is all boy and loves to make as much noise as possible and is quite destructive already!
A note about the above picture: He has been in his DOC band for 6 weeks now. His head was somewhat flat on the back and right side so we decided that even though it wasn't severe we would rather try to fix it than regret not fixing it after it was too late. We are hoping he only has another 4-6 weeks left to wear it. His head seems to be responding well, at least I think so. The things on his hands that look like workout gloves are actually thumb splints. He has had some difficulties physically and is receiving occupational and physical therapy. Once of his issues has been that he tends to keep his thumbs tucked in and has difficulty manipulating objects because his thumbs don't do what they are supposed to. The thumb splints are intended to keep a good stretch between his thumb and finger so that the muscle doesn't tighten enough to make thumb movement even more difficult. Between the helmet and the gloves, we get A LOT of stares when we are out in public. There have also been some discrepancies between the right and left side of his body, which has brought up suspicion of an in utero stroke with his pediatrician and therapists. At this point we are taking a wait and see approach before we put him under sedation for an MRI. Even if the MRI did show a stroke, it would not change anything we are doing so we don't feel it is completely necessary right now. He is getting the therapies he needs and that is most important.