Thursday, June 11, 2009

Let's Talk About Reflux

See how dramatically your life changes with one tiny little baby? I could be blogging about sex or promiscuity among teens, or any of a myriad of other interesting topics. But instead, I am blogging about REFLUX! Yep. At three weeks, just as I had stopped crying every 30 seconds and just as L and I were finally figuring out the whole breastfeeding thing, she begin to scream her head off every time she ate! Good times people. Let me tell ya.

Here's how a feeding session would go. Baby cries, mama gets situated with My Breast Friend nursing pillow, nipple shield, wipe cloths and baby. Baby latches on, takes a drink, and another, unlatches, arches back, throws head in same direction and screams. I had no idea what to do. I re situated myself, latched her back on only to go through the same scenario. I would end up in tears and feeding her a bottle. Sometimes filled with pumped milk and sometimes filled with formula. I didn't know what was going on. Even with the bottle, she would scream but it was easier to get her to eat a bit from the bottle.

This went on for a day or so and I called the doctor for an appointment. They checked her out, weighed her (she was gaining weight), smiled and said, well it may be a little reflux, but she is doing great! We'll see you in a month at her next well baby visit.

I reluctantly left the office only to go home and have the same thing happen. We must have returned to the doctor's three times before they prescribed Zantac. "Okay, here's your prescription. One ting though, it takes a full 7 to 10 days for the medication to start working" she said with a smile. I would be serving 20 to life if I had done what I wanted to do at that time which was rip her face off. The doctor, not the baby!

Home we went and we waited and waited and waited for the medicine to work. Only it never did. The only time she would cease crying was when my husband would come home an feed her while holding her up in a standing position. His hands were just big enough to do this. She would suck down a full bottle in the same time it took me to get her to scream through one ounce of food! I am embarrassed to write down how many FULL bottles I hurled against the wall in frustration. (it was that or the baby, I feel I made the right choice!) I panicked every time I took her into the doctor's office. I feared they would tell me that some babies are just fussy, that this was how she was. But I knew enough to know that was not true. The second she stopped eating, she was smiling, laughing, playing. It all had to do with eating.

Our last resort was Previced. A drug used for extreme cases of reflux. A drug not really tested on babies. A drug that does not dissolve, that you have to learn how to administer through a syringe by mouth. A drug that MY INSURANCE DOES NOT COVER and costs $300 for 30 pills. I finally understood what it would be like to be sick and uninsured.

On the Prevecid, she was better. Eating was tolerable at best, but she was eating, gaining weight and thriving despite my crying, worrying, bottle throwing fits. I knew then that we would make it. Some how, some way my little girl and I would make it.

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