Head Meet Wall.

Okay, so here’s the deal.

I just spent 2 hours getting Ruby to sleep, so I’m going to sit here and pound out a blog post. If she wakes up, I’m hitting submit, regardless of where the post is standing.

Shit.

Yeah, I’m writing about poop again. The low-down – Ruby doesn’t poop. From day one, she has never pooped normally. She passed her meconium, had a normal poop or two, and then stopped. She started stooling every other day… then every two days, then every three. Her little poops were getting firmer and firmer. When she got to four days without a bowel movement, I ‘helped’. (Yeah, it really sucks.) She went another four days without pooping, and I helped again. This time, her poop was entirely solid, clay-like and painful. She screamed. Her poops were streaked with blood, likely from fissures from being so terribly constipated.

YES, constipated.

YES, I know that breastfed babies can go days without stooling, and that’s normal.

What Ruby is experiencing is NOT normal.

Neither is the damn runaround I keep getting from any help I seek. I called my pediatrician’s nurse line, and was informed that I needed to drink more water, that would probably help.

WTF? I said my baby was constipated, not me.

Two days later, and more than a little irritated, I demanded to be seen by the pediatrician. She took me seriously, checked to make sure Ruby’s little pooper-hole wasn’t too small, addressed dietary issues, and then told me to give her prune juice or Karo syrup.

WTF? She was at that point only 6 weeks old. Sugar?

To take words out of my dear friends mouth, Breastmilk is supposed to be the PERFECT food. It’s not missing karo syrup from its ingredients, so it’s pretty likely that I don’t need to supplement with that. She offered me solutions to symptoms instead of looking for the problem.

My next step was to consult a Lactation Consultant.

I’m glad I did, because she IMMEDIATELY acknowledged that there is a physical problem here – breastfed babies should be having 3-5 poopy diapers a day between birth and 4-6 weeks old. Period. She was livid that I have been brushed off for so long, and swore to get us help.

But she also made me feel like an idiot more than a few times. She watched me nurse Ruby, saw her cough and sputter, pull off of the nipple and struggle. She made comments about my massive oversupply, and wanted to know why I wasn’t doing anything to handle it. She sighed, and “Tsk!”d and shook her head when I described the methods I had been trying in order to control my supply issues, and also to help Ruby any way that I could. She reduced me to tears 3 times in a one hour appointment. Her intent was to help, but her manner left me feeling dejected, like a failure. I appreciate her help, but I wish I had used my guts and stood up to her less-than-caring attitude.

Of COURSE I’m doing things wrong. I don’t know everything there is to know about lactation and breast feeding. Very few people do. And if we all did… she’d be out of a damn job.

But fuck it if I’m not trying my best, doing my best, and just wanting to make things better for my little girl.

Ruby’s up. I’m done. Will post the plan of action later.

Poor Pooper.

I am about to write an entire blog post about Feces.

You have been warned.

When Ronan was a newborn, he pooped a lot.  A LOT.  Every single feeding, we had to change him before we nursed, and then we’d have to change him again after we finished nursing.  I remember wondering if it was normal for a baby to poop that much.  Every single night was wake, diaper, nurse, diaper, sleep.

His poops were always ‘normal’ breastfed poops – mustard yellow, seedy and very loose.  There were many-a-diaper blowouts.

Ruby?

Ruby doesn’t poop.

She poops about once every three days.  And her poops are yellow, but they are solid.  And she has to WORK SO HARD to get them out.  Also, when she finally DOES poop, she poops 3 days worth of it, and it takes over half an hour to get it all out.  I end up just letting her lay on a towel with no diaper.  It’s a lotta-poop!

The pediatrician said it’s normal, and not to worry unless she goes a week without pooping.  But come on.  She’s so tiny, and that has to be SO uncomfortable.  I don’t like going a couple days without pooping!

I don’t know that there is anything I can do.  I have started giving her a probiotic but I haven’t noticed much of a difference.  The poor girl toots up a storm.

As young as she is, I’m not going to offer her juice or any sort of stool softener.  I just hope it gets a little better for her.

Anyways.  Poop.

 

Bath Time Fail.

This is a story, as a mom, that I just HAVE to share.

Last night, Ronan was extra tired.  We fed him some dinner and then went for an early bath.  He was with a sitter yesterday, and one of the things that happens when Ronan’s with a sitter is that I lose track of when poops happen.  Never usually a big deal, but it’s something I like to know.

Until last night.

I put Ronan in the bath as it was filling, and sat next to the tub.  We played and splashed in the water.  All of a sudden, he squatted down and made his poop-face.  I panicked a little, but picked him up and perched him on the edge of the toilet.  He finished pooping in the bowl!  But I had to fish the early poop out of the tub and let him run naked around the bathroom while I drained the tub, sprayed some Clorox clean-up, scrubbed and rinsed.  Then I started refilling the tub.  He played in the bathroom the whole time.

So… poop in the tub = fail.  But first poop in the POTTY? = WIN!

I showed him his poop in the bowl, and then we flushed and watched it go away together.  Then he closed the lid.

I put him back in the tub, and went to clean off all of the toys that were in the water when he pooped.  I had my back to the tub… well, really my SIDE to the tub for about 3 minutes.  I came over with all of his toys, ready to give them back…

… and he was playing with poop.

LOTS of poop.

There was a shit-fest in my bathtub.  I was so mortified, I froze.  Brock took Ronan out of the tub again, and I was at a loss of what to do.  “What did you do last time, Mandy?” Brock asked.

“I fished it out with my hand!  But it was just one little poop!  There are a HUNDRED in there!”

There may or may not have been less than a hundred poops.

Finally, I decided to just get the poop out.  I fished around with my hands for a while, drained the tub, re-bleached, re-scrubbed, and re-filled.  At this point, Ronan was crying because he was cold and wanted in the bath.  We did a lot of talking, “We don’t poop in the bathtub, Ronan.  We poop in the potty.  Poop is dirty.”

Finally, we got him in a clean tub sans poop.  We washed quickly, shampooed, then rinsed.  Bath time took twice as long for half the actual amount of bathing.

I used to be SO proud… Ronan had never, ever pooped in the tub, even as a small baby.  Now?  Twice in one night.

Bath time FAIL.

Parenting FAIL.

I had my first major parenting FAIL moment today.

Yeah, I know.  The other things I’ve written about here weren’t major fails?  Well.  This one puts the rest of them to shame.

I suffer from Monday night insomnia.  It has something to do with working a midnight shift on Saturday and Sunday.  I try to stay up as late as I can on Monday night, so I’m really tired when I go to bed.  That way, when Ronan wakes in the middle of the night, and I get up with him, I wont get stuck awake and spend the rest of the night struggling to sleep.

It didn’t work last night, and I was up for almost all of the night.  When I got up this morning, I wasn’t ready to get up.  So I did what I usually do in that case.  I double checked the room for baby-proofed-ness, laid my blanket on the floor, and dozed while Ronan played.  I dont get much more sleep, because he wakes me every 10 or 15 minutes or so by jumping on me, but it makes me feel better.

Right before I laid down, I changed his diaper and noticed he’d had a little pebble of poop.  I set the diaper aside so he couldn’t kick it while I was changing him, got him dressed, and put him down on the floor.

Then I forgot about the diaper.

Ronan crawled over to me about an hour later, and he smelled like poop.  I got up, and asked him if he had pooped again… and then noticed the poop smashed ALL OVER THE CARPET.

He had found the diaper, and dropped the poop pebble on the floor.  Since he can now walk, he proceeded to step in the poop, and then walk around the living room.  I spent the rest of the morning scrubbing baby poop out of my carpet, spaced several adorable inches apart.

All I can say is that I’m thankful he didn’t TOUCH the poop with his hands, nor put it in his mouth.

Mandy = fail.