Monday, March 23, 2009

Got milk?

So, it has been several months since I updated...oops. For the one or two people who read this, I am going to try to post once a week. We will see how that goes!

The biggest thing that has happened is that the realization that Kelly has a milk allergy. It has been so overwhelming that I haven't been able to talk (or write) about it much. It all started back in November at her 2 month checkup. She was given an antibiotic for an ear infection, and also had her standard shots. Well, she wound up with diarrhea. We are talking about 6-8 times a day; her normal pattern was 2-3 times every other day. She was also very unhappy--cranky, not sleeping well, crying unconsolably. However, we had been suspecting reflux, just like Ally had as a baby. After 4-5 days, I called the pediatrician, because the paperwork for the rotateq vaccine said that it could cause diarrhea. The nurses said it was because of the antibiotic. After a week of her being miserable, we took her to the pediatrician who said that the bacteria in her belly were out of balance and to give her yogurt to restore the good bacteria. Fine. In retrospect, WTH did I do to her? In an act that was either parenting genius or a new low in my parenting career, I stuck Kelly's fingers in the yogurt and let her suck it off. Because, let me tell you, trying to get a 2 month old to eat from a spoon works as well as giving a 1 day old Ally formula from a medicine cup! I guess the yogurt worked, since the poopy diapers decreased a little. But she was still going 3-4 times a day. We wound up back at the pediatrician because she was still unhappy and in pain, and we wound up with a diagnosis of reflux, though she said the pooping didn't make sense. Tried the zantac, no huge difference. The pediatrician had mentioned that we might want to bring in a diaper and have the stool tested for blood, which would indicate a milk allergy. We blew that off, because we figured we would have known already. Kelly is my chunky monkey, at least compared to Ally! She gained 2 lbs in one month!

However, after a month of increased pooping and increased crankiness, I took a diaper in, fully expecting them to say "nope" and send me home. The nurse came out and said that the dr wanted to see me since it was positive for blood. I was all along in the waiting room with Kelly, and my heart just sank. How could this be? Wouldn't that have been evident early on? I was nursing her, but eating plenty of dairy, so I would think that would have led to her not gaining at all. The dr said the good side of it was that she did gain well, but her gut was so irritated that there was blood in her stool. So, the edict was no more dairy for Mommy, effective immediately. And immediately was 3 days before Christmas. I came home and cried while Kelly slept in her car seat, and then called my hubby and mom. I had a little pity party for myself. It is hard enough to find time to eat anything with 2 kids, but now that we had to cut out dairy, it was impossible. No more lean cuisine entrees, grilled cheese, pasta with parmesan, even just cereal with milk. You don't realize how many things have dairy until you look at the ingredients--nutrigrain bars for instance. And chocolate is a no-no, which killed me. So no Christmas cookies or over-the-top desserts for me this year. No mashed potatoes. No veggie dip, or any other kinda yummy dip. No cheese plate. No garlic bread. Nada. Now, obviously, the most important thing was that Kelly get well, and she did. But it was definitely a hard thing to change, especially since (IMO) soy milk sucks and soy cheese still has whey (a dairy byproduct) in it. However, I was SO HUNGRY. I was eating and eating enough to keep up my supply, but nothing was satisfying me. I wanted pizza. Skyline chili. Ice cream. Ranch dressing. Lasagna. Cheese on my tacos--ever had a taco without cheese? Its just wrong. And I didn't make Ally or Mike cut out dairy, so I had to watch them eat it, which was torture.

Kelly seemed to improve; her eczema got better; she wasn't crying as much and was starting to sleep better. And that was all that mattered!