Archive | December, 2012

new tricks

10 Dec

John likes to call home at least once a shift to check in on his girls.  Sometimes he has a hard time holding in his high-pitch cackle of laugh when I reveal a new trick his daughter’s demonstrated.  At two weeks of age, it was the ability to, the moment after I finished bathing her, while she was still naked in my arms, dump of load of mustard-colored stool over my arms and stomach while simultaneously vomiting down my chest.  She was not phased by this experience in the slightest.

At six weeks of age, while we were practicing smiling, she managed to vomit in my mouth.  Apparently I don’t learn, my daughter has perfected her aim, or I find her so irresistibly adorable that I can’t help but continue with the big-mouth smiles, as I have once again found myself spitting out my own curdled breast milk.

Look at her plotting away:


You would think I would be disgusted.  I’d love to know more about the hormones, genes, neurons, or whatever that make us hard-wired to not be completely repulsed by the many things that are expelled from our progeny’s orifices.  Or what makes us inherently proud of each milestone, regardless of how minute it must seem, or each demonstration that the body is functioning appropriately.  I think about this when my heart simply melts with each owl-like coo-hooing Aurelia’s been rocking out recently, or when I exuberantly exclaim, “Nice work, honey!” when she startles herself with her own long, wet fart.

just in cases…

6 Dec

What do you do when you have an infant recovering from GERD who just wants to snuggle?

snuggle 1snuggle 2

The answer: watch Christmas movies on ABC Family all. night. long.  I turned the TV to Home Alone just in time to see one of my favorite holiday scenes: when Kevin and Old Man Marley talk in the church while a children’s choir rehearses “O Holy Night.”  I think all choir geeks love this scene.


Other holiday favorites include Jamie’s proposal to Bonita Aurelia in Love Actually, and pretty much anything involving muppets:

Happy St. Nicholas Day!


5 Dec

Poor Aurelia!  It can’t be easy to be the first born of a doctor and a (hopefully) doctor-to-be.  Too many wet diapers and we worry about malabsorption.  Too few, pyloric stenosis.  Of course, the latter has definitely been on the radar because our girl is a vomiter and we have a family history (there is a genetic predisposition).  John had surgery as an infant for pyloric stenosis, a narrowing of the opening between the stomach and the first part of the small intestine that causes projectile vomiting, dehydration, and hunger.  Her recent weight gain makes us much less concerned.  Some kids just vom a lot.

When I fixated on another possible diagnosis, I knew I was being paranoid…who is it that said a little knowledge is a dangerous thing?  Although infant reflux is common, actual gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), where the baby experiences discomfort due to the reflux of stomach acid, is less common.  We’re shown videos during our peds rotation of Sandifer’s syndrome, when an infant forcibly arches her head and neck backward to lengthen the esophagus and partially relieve the discomfort of reflux.  John and I watched our darling girl perform the same maneuver accompanied by a high-pitched screech during or shortly after feeding–absolutely heart-breaking to witness.  For about five days, Aurelia was unconsolable for stretches of time (felt like forever, though they were probably only 2-5 minutes each).  One day, she was hoarse from crying, and likely from reflux as well.

We called our pediatrician first thing Monday and, while trying our best not to be annoying, paranoid, know-it-all parents, we presented Aurelia’s symptoms…and we might have politely mentioned our suspected diagnosis.  She was started on a trial of Zantac (a.k.a. Ranitidine, a histamine H2-receptor blocker that inhibits the production of stomach acid).  Two days of treatment and our sweet Aurelia is all snuggles again.  Although I had hoped Zantac would be our silver bullet, I’m amazed by the nearly immediate change it made to her disposition–or, I should say, the affect reflux had on her disposition to begin with.  Then again, considering how reflux during my 35th week of pregnancy affected my attitude toward everything (and yes, I know, just one week, I can’t complain!), I shouldn’t be surprised.

Now if only someone could come up with liquid Zantac that doesn’t have a taste that makes my daughter purse her lips deliberately as though I’m feeding her Campori or something equally disgusting.