Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Bad spanking

Feeding my baby is like taking a roller coaster ride. There are days when she will do very well and drink like a baby, but there are days when she is simply a spoiled brat. Each time she refuses to feed, she will kick, scream and roll with all her might just to get out of our clutches. Usually, we will just hold her down to make sure she finishes as much as possible. However, today I just lost my patience. After 1hr of feeding, when she decided to throw her tantrum without even finishing half her feed, I gave her a spank. That, of course led to more frustration and anger which led to more spanking. I lost count of the times I spanked her and my hand was stinging with pain, so was my heart. I almost took something else to hit her but the better of me knew it was wrong to even hit her with my bare hands. If just my hands could inflict so much hurt and pain, I cannot imagine anything else.

After all, she is only a child. What does she know? That was a regrettable spanking ever and no amount of Magic Cream can remove the trauma. Just as my hubby said it. She is classically our child, bearing the same stubborn streak like both of us and forcing our way will lead to no end.

Perhaps we should heed our pediatrician's advice to let her go hungry. Perhaps a taste of hunger will spur her to feed. Then it just occurred to me that my cat Princess also has the same issue. She is a fussy eater and will refuse to eat should she not feel like it. As such, her food was usually taken by my fat cat, George, who enjoys the double meal. This led her to be hungry earlier than her next feed and she will end up begging for food. We will always ignore her cries and for the next meal, she will gobble up her food. After a few weeks, she began to eat as we feed and she has slowly grown bigger over the years. Perhaps our baby is really behaving like a Princess. 

'Persuasion is better than force'. That, I will try to learn.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The naked truth

So, what sort of mother am I? Putting up all these naked pictures of my little gal? Well, I realized that by not dressing her up, I have much lesser cloths to wash since she got nothing to puke on.
Isn't she cute? Somehow she does not look skinny in pictures.

Her 1st potty training! Look how hard she tries! She is so skinny that her butt is dropping into the potty.

Father- daughter bonding!

Puking again...

There goes my baby again. This was the 4th time she had vomited in a day. This was also the 4th time I am cleaning the floor. This amount of vomit is almost equivalent to a drunkard. But luckily, this a few days ago, probably one of the worse days. Yesterday, she finally opened her golden mouth to take in the food I gave her. Yes, finally! Today was also very good as she managed to take about 5 tablespoons of food and drank 850ml of milk!

Friday, November 28, 2008

BPA update[2]

Avent BPA free bottles are here! You may get them from Mothercare stores. Now what am I gonna do to these BPA free bottles? Anyone interested?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Maiden flight!

This was my darling's first flight from Singapore to Bangkok! Look how excited she was. We  were very relieved that she did not cry on the plane on taking off and to our surprise, she was swallowing to equalize her ears! Though we know that feeding and pacifier will help, our baby simply hate to have anything in her mouth. :)

After all the excitement, she finally settled down with daddy to have a nap... so sweet.

Yippee! Our princess is having fun in OUR bed even though she has a beautiful cot for herself. This is a very beautiful villa at Evason Hideaway, Hua Hin. It oversees the Gulf of Siam with cows roaming the pasture just outside the villa.

This is the private pool that comes with the villa. Very nice but was too cold to swim in... hehe. I tried dipping our princess in and she came out shivering... ;p

Food in Hua Hin is of course, seafood! Fresh from the sea everyday! The most recommended seafood restaurant was 'The Hua Hin Terrace'. It is filled with tourist and has an interesting dish known as 'Fiery squids' literally as seen below. The sexiest drink we had was 'Virgin Pina Colada', yummy!

This is our sweetie pie playing goodie 2 shoes while we were having breakfast. that of course did not last for long. 

Since it was a holiday, it must feel like one, so we got a babysitter, Pung to take care of our princess for 2hrs while we booked ourselves a good massage from the 'Six Senses Spa'. We were initially disappointed that she did not seem to mind leaving us, laughing and playing happily with Pung. Upon returning, we realized that she was crying for 30mins before our return and like most babysitter would do, Pung tried feeding our princess which only brought on more fustration cause our baby hates FOOD! Nevetheless, all was well and we went for a good dinner with baby sleeping in my sarong.

All good things have to come to an end as we stayed in Bangkok for the next 2days before heading back to Singapore. I was quite delighted that I still managed to do some shopping with the baby in tow. :)

After so much fun and excitement, our Princess was reluctant to leave and refused to sleep on the plane even though she was really tired.

Traveling with GERD

Finally! We manage to go on a wonderful holiday with baby! We went on a 2 days trip to Hua Hin, followed by another 2 days in Bangkok, right when the riot against elected Thailand Prime Minister Somchai was taking place. So we thought traveling with a baby was challenging enough, we have a baby with GERD. Cool!
Nappy as a bib
Back at home, I had been doing so much luandry that my hand are cracking from all the detergent used. That will be the last thing I want to do on a holiday. So I bought 30 pieces of incontinence sheets (use to lay on the bed of ppl who cannot control their urine) to be used as bibs. Anyway, my baby is already using a nappy as a bib as a normal bib is not good enough to soak up her vomit.
Incontinence sheet

Tear the middle down by 1/4 or more to fit the neck.

Voila! An ultra big and leak proof bib!

That really saved me a lot of washing. Even if you do not mind washing, it is very difficult to dry the laundry as there was no where to hang the laundry and with the air con running in the hotel most of the time, you'll need to pack the wet laundry home instead.

Even after bringing so many incontinence sheets, I still pack more than enough clothing for my princess just in case. In addition, I also brought along zip lock bags to store her soiled laundry so as not to stink up our luggage. The zip lock bags also double up as a 'container' to do chemical sterilisation of her bottles, with no need to pack her steamer along.

After all, we were quite happy to only need to bring 1 big luggage for 3 person and a foldable pram during this trip with room to fit our shopping goodies upon return. No doubt it is difficult to travel with a child, it is not entirely impossible and we are lookiing forward to our next trip in San Francisco. Can't wait!

Sleeping with GERD

Our baby just turned 6mth and she ended her day by throwing up in her sleep. My hubby woke up in the morning to find her covered in her own vomit. Instead of being upset with the mess that she had created, we were more worried that she got choked and were on relieved to find her breathing. We were lucky as we laid her on her side before tucking her in bed. This is especially recommended so that the stomach contents do not fall back into her breathing tract. Laying her on her side allows the vomit to empty from her mouth.

Other than the danger of getting choked, such event may even result in cyanosis. Cyanosis is a blue colouration of the skin or mucous membrane due to insufficient oxygen circulation. It is especially vulnerable in infants with GERD as some vomit could be breathed into the lungs, blocking some of the ducts to the lungs. Since our baby throws up so often, we always make sure that her skin is not blue. The is of course not very helpful since my hubby is colour deficient.

Nevertheless, we are very thankful that our baby has pass her 6mth without much incident and we really look forward for her to grow bigger, leaving GERD behind.

Friday, November 14, 2008

BPA update

Ok Avent users, Avent will launch their BPA free bottles in Singapore in the nest few weeks, so hang on! Don't do what I did cos it is too troublesome. :)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

BPA free bottles

BPA is short for biphenyl A, a common organic compound used in products like plastic, polycarbonate, CDs etc. Low doses of BPA can mimic hormones (estrogen) in our body, interacts with the estrogen receptor and produce estrogen-like effects on the development of the brain, male and female reproductive organs, and breasts, causing a variety of disorders, including: overgrowth of the vaginal lining, premature breast development, feminization of male offspring, and infertility. As such, BPA in baby’s milk bottle has been a raising concern.

Being kiasu parents, we went on a shopping spree for BPA free bottles. Since I’ve invested in the latest Avent Isis breast pumps, we also looked for bottles that can fit the pumps. Both of us were quite sceptical about the BPA free plastic bottles as they come in all sorts of neon colours. Plastics will always be plastics. If they do not leach BPA, they will be leaching something else. So we went to look for wide neck glass bottles and only Pigeon has them. After weeks of shopping, we finally got the following: MAM, Nuby, B-free and Pigeon glass. All these bottles are wide neck but only Nuby fits the pumps. We tried all the new bottles and teats to feed our baby and being a fussy and difficult feeder, she is only accustomed to Avent’s teats. As such, we started to mix and match bottle caps, and teats. It was an uphill task as even though the Avent teats can fit into the other bottle caps, they do not perform as well as they did using Avent bottles. Maybe due to the technical design, some of the bottles had a vacuum during feeding and milk was unable to flow out. Others were leaking at the sides as the teats did not seal well with the bottles. After some modification by trimming the Avent teats, we were finally able to use them on the MAM and Pigeon bottles. As for the Nuby bottles, I used them to store my expressed breast milk, using Avent’s rubber cover on the Nuby’s cap.

Finally, our hurdle with BPA is over and Baby Anais can feed with her usual Avent teats with brightly coloured bottles leaching everything but BPA... sigh.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Battle with GERD

'Oh sure, my kids throws up every now and then too.' will be the remark of most parents about their kids. However, what they meant by throwing up is only a couple of mouth full of milk post feeding. For that, I will only call it regurgitation, which is very common in most infants. My child throws up between 20mls to 120mls of milk 2 - 6 times a day, every day, 24/7 till today. Her vomit has 'territorised' every corner of the house, including me. So what exactly is wrong with her? 

Being an anxious 1st time mum, the 2nd time Baby Anais threw up, I insisted on seeing her paediatrician. That day, she was prescribed some Motilium and Zantac to increase her gastric flow and reduce her stomach acid. We dutifully fed her medicine and changed her feeding regime to 1 hourly feed, reducing the volume of each feed to help her to digest better. Both my husband and I lost sleep trying to feed her about 18 times a day but it did not help. Our baby was not gaining enough weight and her vomiting did not stop. We went on to look for a pediatric gastro specialist, Dr Marion Aw from NUH and were given a stronger acid inhibitor, Omiprazole. Similarly, it did not help and the medications were making her appetite worse. Moreover, she was also suffering from some of the side effects like rigidness of her body and irritability. Since she was not benefiting from her medications, we took a brave move to stop her medicines.

In the midst of it all, I've also changed my diet to rule out any chance of food allergy that she could have from my breast milk. We also bought different formulas to try. Nothing works. We even tried to put her upright after feeding, till we doze off sitting up in the middle of the night. Even her bed was elevated at an angle. That did not work too. We burped her, used all sorts of bottles we can find in the market, massage her etc. Nothing works. To make matter worse, the pain of feeding has also caused her to hate feeding so much that she always refuse to drink. By month 2, she refused to latch on and we can only bottle feed. Today, even feeding using a bottle is a challenge as she really HATE to drink. By month 4 when we introduced semi solid food, it was much messier than I thought. First she turns her head to avoid the food, followed by flailing arms to stop the spoon near her mouth and finally, the shadow-less flying kick to throw my spoon away from sight.

If dealing with a hunger strike baby is not bad enough, we also have overly concern grandmother who will listen to all sorts of advice from ‘friends’ on how to manage a puking baby. Things like Gripewater, leaving the baby alone to sleep instead of force feeding her, feed formula instead of breast milk, apply ointment on the belly, make sure the wind do not blow her head etc. Obviously none of the above put my baby’s weight up. It is even more challenging when we have very disparate opinions about managing Baby Anais and we always end up in bitter arguments. To make things worse, Asian grandmothers love to play the blame game and they have problem accepting the fact that the baby have a problem. They will find faults with the mother that is causing the baby problem from prenatal, antenatal till postnatal.

Family support is never more important than times like this. After getting over with the anxiety of being an ‘inadequate’ 1st time mother, I had to learn to manage an underweight child with feeding problem. I was initially overwhelmed by the challenge that I had to face and I am very thankful that my husband not only helped out a lot but also supports my decisions on ways to manage the baby. Without which, it would have been a very frustrating and agonising journey. Baby Anais is turning 6 month soon and things should be getting better... I hope. Nevertheless, patience is the most important lesson I’ve learnt and GERD is only a temporary problem which will go away as the child grows older. So I’ll just endure for now...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My First Blog

Ok... I know it is a little late that I embrace the new fab to have a blog. Well, at least is it still not obselete. :) So now I'm glad to have my first blog. Boy am I surprised at how easy it is to start one. So this shows that I'm not so 'sua ku', still can keep up with times and hopefully my daughter who will grow up playing with even more sophisticated technology in the future.

So what took me so long? Well, I'm a very busy person you know... holding a full time job, studying part time, dating my ex boyfriend, now my hubby, got married, have baby... worse still, a baby that pukes everyday almost for all feeds. So why now? Simple... now my full time job is to babysit Baby Anais which only involves feeding, mopping up vomit and playing. Actually, the more compelling reason for this blog is to dedicate a site for infant gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) which my dear daughter is having. It is a very rare feeding problem with limited medical cure and management. Not only so, there were very limited information on it as well. This is especially so in Singapore. Therefore, I will like to consolidate related sites and share personal information and experience for fellow parents facing the same challenge... you are not alone. :)

As I still have one final exam on 6 Nov 08, the subsequent blog with information on GERD will only come after that. So hang on!