Thursday, October 23, 2008

Making Sense of it All

*long post*

The girls fared well at the doctor's office today. Here are the facts...

Anna Claire
weight 13 lbs. 3 oz. (25th percentile)
length 25 in. (50th percentile)
head circumference 15 3/4 in. (25th percentile)

Mallory
weight 13 lbs. 8 oz. (25th percentile)
length 25 1/2 in. (50th-75th percentile)
head circumference 16 3/4 in. (50th percentile)

Both girls did great with their shots. I know it must have hurt terribly but they were real troopers crying for probably less than two minutes each.

I always take in my little notebook with all my questions neatly written, but it's hard to get all the answers down when I am usually holding one of the babies while Walter has the other and remember to ask follow-up questions, so I come out with answers written in chicken scratch! As thorough as I think my questions are, I always get home with even more questions than I started with. I end up sitting at my kitchen table like I am now trying to make sense out of my notes. So, here goes...

Feedings
She wants us to keep feeding them 6 oz. every three hours BUT add a 10:30 bottle because we will stop concentrating their formula. Instead of five 6 ounce bottles they will get six 6 ounce bottles which actually all works out to the same number of calories per day: 720.

She didn't seem thrilled we had started rice cereal in the bedtime bottles on our own since our last appointment, but I'm not so upset about that. I knew the girls weren't ready to be spoon fed but needed more sustenance, and everybody else was doing it, so we did, too! ;) We're stopping that and will try spoon feeding the girls tonight - a tablespoon each. My twin books all say to feed from one bowl with one spoon, so I guess I'll mix up two tablespoons and see how it goes. This should be fun!

Here's something where I wish I had asked for more clarification. She suggested we feed them their cereal between the 7:30 PM bottle and 10:30 PM bottle. This is not sitting well with me. The girls have been sleeping through the night for months now (with a bump in the road here and there) with a bedtime between 7:30 and 8:00. I was already a little upset about waking them up for another feeding at 10:30, but the idea of keeping them awake between 7:30 and 10:30 to feed them cereal seems out of the question. Maybe we can feed them their cereal between their 4:30 and 7:30 bottles instead??

We're switching Anna Claire to Alimentum to help with her pooping issues. Hopefully she won't need her daily does of prune juice anymore. At least both girls will be on the same formula again, but WOW! is Alimentum expensive!

Once we get the cereal under control we can start introducing fruits and veggies. She said we could either mix them with the cereal when first introducing or alternate bites during feeding. By the time they are six months old, she wants them eating 2 cereal-with-fruit and/or veggie-meals a day.

She also suggested that once we get Anna Claire adjusted to her new formula we could try to start taking the girls off Prevacid. I would be fine with this. To be honest, we got off schedule a few weeks ago and forgot to give the girls their Prevacid and they both didn't seem to notice one bit - and neither did we! I think they may be ready to come off.

Napping
Our naps have yet to regulate. The girls almost always take three naps a day; sometimes they miss one, and the lengths vary anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours. She didn't seem to think naps were a huge concern since I have such good nighttime sleepers and that, perhaps, this is why their napping is not more regular. She said to expect two short naps and one long nap a day, and as long as they were getting about 15-16 hours of sleep every 24 hours (and they are), they were doing fine.

Sleeping
I was worried about all the wiggling the girls do at night since we elevate the mattresses. She just suggested we keep the mattress flat. We'll try it and see how they do. They have always slept on an incline whether it was on the sleep positioners or in the swings, so I'm worried this will disrupt their sleep in the beginning.

Now that we have the heat on, she suggested we keep the nursery cooler rather than warmer even though the girls are nearing the end of the SIDS danger zone. I had heard on the news that to help prevent SIDS running a fan to keep the air circulating was a good idea, and she agreed.

She said the sleep sacks we've been using since it's been cooler were fine or we could try a pajama blanket. Again, this is one of those things I wrote down in a hurry but didn't ask about. What is a pajama blanket?

Since I'm worried about the girls sleeping on their tummies once they can roll over on their own, she suggested we start practicing with them rolling both from tummy to back and from back to tummy. Right now they can both roll from their backs onto their sides but pretty much get stuck there. All they do on their tummy is pretty much fuss!

Other Bits and Pieces
We have their first flu shot scheduled for December 12 since they must be 6 months old, and the second dose is set for January 13 which is also when they will go back for their 6 month shots even though they will be 7 months old by then - we're off by about a month! Why they cannot just give us the six month shots in December since we'll already be there, I do not understand.

She also said we could begin to see signs of early teething anytime now - increased drooling, wanting to put everything in their mouths...I'd say we were there.

Both girls are right on track with their motor and social skills. YAY!!

So, aside from the girl's having to have shots, I'd say the appointment went pretty well. I just hope we can all adjust to the changes in our feeding routine. I'll keep you posted on that. I'm sure to have some great pictures later tonight of the girls trying to eat from a spoon for the first time!

2 comments:

Brandon said...

We aren’t experts, but since Owen is exactly 3 months older than the girls and we go to the same doctor, I thought I would share some of our experiences so far…

Feeding

I’m surprised the dr. would want you to wake them up to feed at this age. We waited to give Owen rice cereal until he was 4 months, but he was already doing four 8oz bottles a day then. We started him on the cereal before his last bottle of the day, always between 6-7 p.m. Once two weeks had passed, he started getting solid fruit and veggies. Maybe the dr. could up their ounces per feeding and they wouldn’t have to eat as often or as late at night? In our experience, once he had tasted “real” food (mixed with the cereal), he didn’t want plain cereal again.

Napping

When Owen slept in his swing, he would take three 2 hour naps a day. Those days are over. His longest nap is always in the morning, a so-so nap midday, and a very short nap (if any) later in the afternoon.

Sleeping

Owen started sleeping through the night when he was 8 wks old and we thought we were good to go. Since he started rolling over, he prefers to sleep on his tummy. By the way, he used to hate having tummy time too. Anyway, now he seems restless and lately he wakes up a few times a night…usually he just needs his pacifier, but occasionally we’ll have to rock him back to sleep. Of course he had a cold and is also teething, so when you combine all those factors, we’re doing pretty well. He’s also always liked to bury his face…first when we rocked him and now when he sleeps. After the first few nights, he finally started turning his head to one side or the other. I still put my hand on his back to make sure he is breathing when I check on him.

Other

Owen was a month off his shots until this last round. I think it has to be at least 6 wks between immunizations, and they tried to give us an appt two months ahead, but we finally got on track. It’s not the biggest deal, but I wanted him to be on track.

Michelle said...

It is all confusing. This is your first time around as a parent and I had all the questions you had and all the wondering and book reading my first time around. It is amazing how relaxed I am with Dylan considering all the sleep and eating issues we have had. Bottom Line: Trust your doctor, if you don't, find a new one. We left the pediatrician with Connor when he was about 30 months because it wasn't working. I trust her completely with babies not so much the toddler age. Also, trust your gut. No one knows a baby like mommy does. If something isn't quite right take them in. My thinking: This is why we have insurance.
I also think I'm so relaxed because I can look at Connor and say "I didn't screw this one up, I should be okay with the second."
Take it day by day.
Dylan has been drinking 30oz. a day the last three days but still stirring around 2am. I've been feeding him a little because I'm just not ready to let the nighttime bottle go. It sounds crazy, I know, but I'm realizing I'm going through my last "firsts". I'm experiencing my last first tooth. My last first time rollover. My last first words (babble). It's hard but I'm making them count. This is it. There will be no more! We are incredibly blessed with two gorgeous, amazing boys. We are loving and holding and cuddling as much as possible, I will never have another newborn. It's hard!