Almost done! Can you believe it?! April 8th, 2015!
So amazing that there’s actually a date in which we will be done! It may not be forever though.. reasons later.
Kylee has had about 4-5 ear infections since she’s started feeding therapy. Four.to.five. i say this because, damnit, I lost count. In April she will also be seeing a new ENT who will hopefully decide tubes are the answer. We tried to convince her last ENT but, he was unreceptive. Went against what we felt was right and so now we have decided to go to a new guy. Either way, the ear infections have got to stop. They have added on almost another 2 weeks to her feeding therapy. But, there is an end in sight, which really is the point.
Our 830-330 monday-friday situation will end. With this end i feel Charlee will get more of the attention she needs (although her babysitters have been fantastic!) Her birthday is 4-2 and her birthday party is 3-29 (this sunday). i really want the whole day to be about her. We will be hush hush about Kylee being fed; upstairs with one person in attendance.
Her grandma Postma went through training last week and wrote a really gripping Facebook update:
I had the pleasure of spending my day with Kylee and participating in her feeding therapy. When Eric told me I needed to be trained so I could feed her I thought “whats to know? Can’t you just show me”. I now understand why he said plainly, (and “you” have to know Eric to appreciate this) “No”. I first got to observe behind a two way mirror “the process” and just thought OMG, you really want me to do this? It’s one bite of food, praise, toy for 5 secs, drink, praise, toy for 5 sec, drink, praise toy for 5 sec, and over again. Goal, complete the entire feeding in 9 mins..Holy Cow, its like a marathon, and if you don’t have the right rythm your screwed. Oh, and don’t forget to periodically weigh the drink to make sure you are giving her the right amount each time, and if she throws up, ignore it, wipe it up, and keep moving. As crazy as it sounds, Ky loves it and is doing awesome. We are so proud of her. I have to say though after spending the day with a room full of other children, all of whom have feeding tubes, and their parents, we are truly blessed to have such great medical care for our children right here in GR. Helen DeVos is something to brag about. All of the parents I met today live in other parts of the state, and some are staying at the Ronald McDonald house during the week. This feeding therapy program is only 1 of 8 in the whole nation! Tomorrow will be my second and last day of training, gotta tell you I’m a little nervous, this is not an easy job, but I am so happy I can be a part of it.
— feeling grateful.
The hardest part about all of this is she needs to eat within 9 minutes to be truly successful. Why? Because the doctors have found out after 9 minutes she ‘feels’ full and doesn’t like the feeling. She then starts to throw up the food to clear that feeling.
I am not sure i can better phrase the process. Drink, drink, praise, toy, bite, praise, toy.. rinse and repeat. Unless it’s a drink only meal.. then drink, drink, praise, toy, drink, drink, praise, toy. Oh! and wait, if there’s a sign of gag/vomit/discomfort turn on mickey mouse clubhouse and then deal with a MMC zombie (as I call her).
I’ll admit, I thought I did well with her this week. i went 3 of 4 days. 2 of which i came off of closes (meaning, i had 3 hours of sleep). Luckily, Eric would watch the girls on our 2 hour breaks so I would come home to nap in between feedings.
Yes, she puked. Yes, it was hard to handle. Apparently, we also do not say ‘please’ or ‘thank you.’ We make demands. “Take a bite. Take a drink.” Not “Please, Kylee, for God’s sake, take a bite!” We, as parents and grandparents, are in charge, not you, you little 24 lb child of mine.
So, I did well. I fed her. Three days this week. Then, today, on my day off, I struggled. Today, she decided she would spit her drinks out. Let them leak onto her bib and laugh. Blow raspberries and laugh.
I heard, “ha, mom, you suck.” I got VERY overwhelmed.
Eric was in the kitchen. After the third drink-and-spit I said “I can’t do this”. I shook with emotion. Eric came over and filled in as i walked away.
I’m an emotionally charged person, always have been. This got me. Now, instead of puking (uncontrollably, and forgivable) she’s going to spit it out at-will? I think not.
“Ignore it,” Eric said.
“I’m trying!” I yelled.
Seriously, it is the hardest thing to do ever. It’s like ignoring someone punching you square in the heart. Like, wham! Haha! Breathe now, ma!
He fed her the rest of her last meal and I sat in the bathroom, moping. Feeling as if failure would surround us forever.
But, I have to realize. She’s 2 1/2. She’s going to do these things no matter if she’s able to eat or not. She will retaliate, test the waters, push the limits, cross lines. I have to know that. I just wish she KNEW how much eating is an importance. It is the most important thing in this home. Not only are her parents cooks/chefs we are advocates of eating. We love to eat, and she WILL too. It has to happen.
The bad news, if she doesn’t successfully progress into solid foods we will have to go back to feeding therapy. I know now, though, that we can make it happen. What I mean by all that is; how a 9 month old progresses from purees to solid foods is how Kylee should now progress. But, lets face it, she’s not so easily predicted. We may go back, and that’s ok.
She is ok, I am ok, Eric is ok, Charlee is ok.
WE will survive.