Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Just how many carriers do I need?

For me? A lot. :) You see, I love wearing my baby and different events call for different carriers. Or rather, different moods call for different carriers. Hee.

Case in point. When going out around the mall and J wants to wear baby, too, we'd bring the R'Jellybean ring sling. If we're going to a relative, we'd bring the pouch. For all other events, especially since getting it, the SaYa is my go-to carrier.

Now. I'm eyeing those buckle strapped carriers... Hmmm... And I've been reading about the various brands from the Sling Lady of the CMA website (of which, my subject came from). And from her, I'm eyeing the Ergo, Beco Butterfly, and the Pikkolo. Hmmm... I have to decide since I have a relative from the US who's coming back here in March and the shipping's free there so... Argh!!!

P.S. Besides which, those buckle-strap carriers will make J a happy daddy. No need to learn how to adjust the tail and whatnots. Hee.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Jack-Jack's pedia turned the ok signal to start solids but...

I am hesitating. Why? Because I've read, and WHO recommends that babies should only drink (or eat) breastmilk (or formula), up to six months. And he's only turning 5 months in February.

Initially, I was excited. I mean, my baby! Starting on solids already! I even asked J if we already have the necessary "weapons" to tackle the new challenge, i.e. spoon especially designed for little mouths, grinder/masher... I thought we didn't have a spoon since I wanted to buy one from Tommee Tippee which is heat sensitive that it turns into another color (I forgot which) when the food is hot. Turns out, we have a LOT. We have a set from the First Years which was given to us and it includes several pairs of spoons and forks with matching food containers with lids.

However, I suddenly remembered that breastfed babies should only take breastmilk up to 6 months, unless they have to take some medication or vitamins but that's it. Not even water is allowed nor is it necessary since breastmilk is composed of around 88% water.

So, I was at a loss. Should I start him on solids already? Initially, we decided to start on February 13, so that it was some sort of pre-Valentine's celebration. But after remembering the above... I suddenly didn't want to. I even researched on my e-group's archives, after emailing for advice, regarding starting solid food. And I happened upon Wholesome Baby Food website, which states out a comprehensive list of why it's better to wait before giving baby solid food. Even Dr. Sears recommends waiting for later than doing it early.

So... I told J about it last night. And he said that ok, we will wait. Besides, it's not as if Jack-Jack's not gaining enought weight. His pedia is happy with his progress. He is almost 7kgs during his last check-up and I'm sure by now, he is already at that weight since he feeds at around 5-7oz (quantified breastmilk) per feeding. Sometimes even going 8-9oz. But that's a rare occasion and not the norm.

And so... We wait. After all, he is still learning to sit unassisted and just because he likes to put everything to his mouth doesn't mean he's ready for a new type of food.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Why I miss wearing my baby and a study that backs up what my instinct tells me is right

Ever since Jack-Jack became sick, I haven't been able to wear him other than the times we take him with us when we hear the Sunday mass. Before, our weekends were fully booked, going from one place to another, to showcase the baby to some person, or to bring him with us while we do our errands since I'm the source of his food so where I go, he goes, too. And when we're out and about, walking around the mall, doing our grocery, hearing mass, waiting for the time, he'd be in the sling (may it be my ring sling, my pouch, or my SaYa) and he'd be quietly snoozing or looking about. He'd usually fuss when he's already hungry, or when his stomach is rumbling, signalling that he's about to poop, or even just pee. When he was still just less than two months old, and I still wasn't that confident with my babywearing, he'd fuss just after a while. But now that I'm more confident (after seeking live demos and assistance) and he's a few months older than before, Jack-Jack is more behaved, and he'd be looking about quietly, feeling secure and comfortable in the sling, that he'd fall asleep in it after a while or when he feels like snoozing already.

Wearing him when we're out and about frees my two hands to do other things like hold J's hand, carry the diaper bag, point out objects to Jack-Jack, smooth out his hair, eat properly (or almost), etc. And while I do all these, Jack-Jack feels like he's actually being held by my hands and that he is where the action is. Plus, we've received looks (of curiousity and appreciation, too) and one time even, when we were going out of church, an old lady (who looks like a grandma) asked where we bought the sling, saying that it would be a big help in carrying the baby since holding her (the baby is a girl) the whole duration of the mass was straining and tiring. Even family members were in awe of the way we carry our baby (because yes, even JP wears him).

And I miss wearing him. I miss going out with him and letting him experience the world, with me by his side, so that whenever he feels too stimulated or startled, I'm just within his reach and I him, ready to soothe him and reassure him that all is well and that mommy (or daddy) is with him and that nothing will harm him. I miss feeling him snuggle and looking down to see that he's already asleep, lulled by my heartbeat and my footsteps, not caring if the rest of the world are noisy or chaotic. I miss smiling in wonder at his peaceful sleep amidst being in a noisy children's party, with the other guests staring in awe at how he's able to sleep with the noise level.

Wearing him is tantamount to carrying him, something I feel my baby shouldn't ever feel deprived of. I've heard alot of well-meaning moms telling me to not let him get used to being carried since he'd always want to be carried, especially when trying to get him to sleep. I'd usually just smile, sometimes I'd answer that Jack-Jack is actually already used to being carried, since I want to carry him, all the time, before he grows up and runs away from me when the time comes that it's me who wants to carry him or hug him. And I've stumbled on two articles here and here which says that carrying the baby is what the baby needs after being born. It helps them develop into having active roles when they become toddlers in the household as they were attached to a busy caregiver when they were babies, helping them adjust to the world they now belong to by laying the foundation for the baby's later experience. And these might just be the answer I can say for when others would advice me to put the baby down so he wouldn't get used to the cuddling, even if my real reason is a personal one (or is it): I want to hold my baby, while he still needs me for food, comfort, and reassurance, things he'd be able to get on his own when he grows older.

I will delve more into attachment parenting when I've read more but in the meantime, here are some websites on babywearing and attachment parenting can be found Instinctive Parenting, Dr. Sears' website, and Attachment Parenting International website.
 

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Moving to a new blog

Just a note... I'm moving to a new blog: http://wearandnursebaby.blogspot.com, my blog that would chronicle my new experiences of being a mother who loves wearing and breastfeeding her baby.

See you there! :)

My breastfed baby got sick... but the new year still brought good news

Two days before Christmas and one day before Christmas eve, Jack-Jack got sick. His temperature rose up the night of December 23, and reached 38.2 degrees Centigrade during dawn of the 24th. We gave him paracetamol, as prescribed by his pedia and we noticed improvement of his fever during the day. It was still high, but not fever high, which was 37.8 degrees and up as told by his pedia, so we didn't give him any medicine after that. We still monitored his temperature as it was erratic, going up and down, though it didn't go back to being fever high for a few days. However, it did go up again to 38 degrees on the 27th. We started giving him Paracetamol again, and promised to continue giving it to him until we get him to his pedia.

We weren't able to go to any family Christmas gathering during this time. Which was both a relief and a disappointment. Relief because we would be shuffling from one place to another starting on the evening of the 24th, ending on the night of the 26th due to various family affairs like Christmas dinner, lunch, reunion, and end of mourning ritual. Disappointment because we missed a lot. Especially me since I rarely see all my extended family together and it's just during special days when we really all get-together like Christmas and my grandparents' wedding anniversary, sometimes on my grandma's birthday.

Anyway... On the 28th, we went to his pedia in the morning. His temperature was cool the second time they got his temperature by an infrared thermometer (which was really cool and I actually wanted to get one). His pedia enumerated three scenarios which might happen in the next couple of days and corresponding medicines we should buy for Jack-Jack. It was actually four, but the first scenario was that it was just a case of the flu and no additional medicine was necessary as it will eventually go away on the fifth day. The other three scenarios were a) sneezing and coughing would be more prominent, b) his stool would be more watery, and c) his fever would still be present on the 31st.

It was the last one that happened. His fever continued to go up and down erratically as we continued giving him paracetamol. On the 30th, as no sneezing, coughing, or stool change was present, I bought erythromycin already, along with the electric pump I bought from an online seller who I was meeting that day for pick-up and payment (which is one of the good news for the new year). Early morning of the 31st, Jack-Jack's temperature reached up to 39.2 degrees and I was close to panicking. I mean, how could this be? Breastfed babies are supposed to not get sick because of all the benefits of breastmilk. Was I eating too much junk that my baby wasn't getting the nutrition he needs? Were we going out too much and bringing him wherever we go since he feeds from me that he inhaled too much pollen in the air, bacteria from the malls, virus from someone that his little body couldn't handle it anymore and just broke down? Did he get it from J, who got sick just a week before Christmas? I was just about to blame everyone and everything, worried about my baby's health, his fever rising to alarming degrees... Plus my mom telling me that I shouldn't have been bringing baby everywhere since he's still, yes, a baby, just a few months, therefore his system is still developing and he is still vulnerable to catching diseases even if I am breastfeeding him.

It was guilt, along with a bit of resentment for ever saying yes and not standing my ground to not bring the baby everywhere. It was just hard to firmly say no, since most were family gatherings that Jack-Jack just had to go to since he still wasn't seen by so and so. Sigh. And now, that firm resolve to not bring the baby everywhere may be a bit too late.

Going back, we texted his pedia, telling him of Jack-Jack's condition. He said to start erythromycin already, and buy a suppository since his fever went up. Since our maid was already on her vacation and neither of us wanted to leave the baby, J asked his parents to buy the suppository for us since they'd be driving us to our New Year's eve destination. Thank goodness we didn't have to use the suppository. Jack-Jack's fever went down to 38 degrees again. In the end, we just continued giving him paracetamol and the erythromycin. And by New Year's eve, his temperature went back to almost normal, going to 37.6 degrees. We prayed that it'd continue and it did! His temperature was back to normal on January 1st 2010, and it continued to be like that until the 2nd. We just continued giving him the erythromycin, discontinuing the paracetamol as his temperature was normal again.

That was the first good news for the New Year. The second was, I got myself an electronic breast pump. It was a relief for my hands when I went back to work. I was so happy that J finally conceded and saw the benefits. Plus, he must have seen how I was struggling to meet Jack-Jack's demands with my manual (which I still love, by the way). And so I now use, at the start of the year, an electric breast pump. And it Freestyle by Medela, which I now adore, especially it's hands-free features, which I will blog on and try to review next time. :)