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03 March 2012

NINE | p52 | 2012

(My project 52 is changing a bit... I was not feeling inspired by my old prompt....) and yes, don't expect it to be on time every week... haha!

Remember when....

You were just so little, and you couldn't eat like you needed to. And mommy worried and worried until we figured out what you needed..

This post has been a couple of weeks in the making. I hadn't written it because I wanted us to get to place of knowledge and decisions before I did. I wanted to have complete information so no one else worries. First off, both the babies are healthy and doing really well. 

However, we were having some weight gain issues with both. Jonah in particular. 

I do not want to offer up a plate of excuses, and honestly, when it comes down to it, it's our families decision as to what is best for ALL of us. Let me just say, I have yet to be able to be successful at breastfeeding my children and that does not make me happy. It's complicated and difficult, and at 6 weeks with Jarvis, when he was failing to thrive, losing his hair, and NOT healthy, we made the decision to switch to formula. It was the right decision then, and it's the right decision now.

Joelle was always a better nurser, and if it had just been her, I feel like we would have been successful. She was gaining, and just a bit slower than the 'normal' suggested track. Jonah really struggled, had an extremely painful latch, and was gaining much, much too slowly. After what had happened with Jarvis, I knew the warning signs and I wanted to nip it in the bud before it got worse. Jonah has been on formula for just about 2 weeks now. He finally started gaining, but still, much slower than I was comfortable with.

He just did not feed well. Every bottle feeding was a struggle to get formula into him, and he needed to be burped VERY often as he sucked in lots of air. He would eat for 30 minutes and get just an ounce and a half before he passed back out from exhaustion. I just felt like something was not going right. 

After meeting with the lactation consultant, and several pediatricians, we ended up with a big question mark and a referral to a Pediatric Occupational Therapist. We visited him yesterday morning and it was a big relief for me.  The OT recognized his organization issues when it came to sucking, swallowing, and breathing at the same time and said he was feeding about how you would expect a baby who was born at 34/35 weeks to eat. We aren't sure what's causing it (low muscle tone in his neck/jaw or a posterior tongue tie which no doctor in Minot is trained to diagnose), but with a few tips and tricks, he is already eating much better and not sucking in as much air. I anticipate this is just a maturity thing, and as he gets bigger and is not exhausting himself eating he will get better at it. For now, we have been able to get closer to 3 oz in him at every feeding and I feel that his weight gain will increase!

And on that note, we have moved Joelle over to formula as well. The OT feels that attempting to get Jonah back breastfeeding is not an option for a couple of months because he doesn't have the muscle tone, and I have come to the decision that I can not be what I need to be for my family while nursing, pumping, and bottle feeding twins. 

I am happy my babies are eating well and growing, and ultimately, that is what is most important to me. I am saddened that, once again, I was unable to be successful at breastfeeding, but I am very thankful for formula and that my babies can still get what they need. Joelle downs over 4 oz at every feeding and she has REALLY chunked up over the past week. 

They have another weight check on Friday and I'll post what they are then. But as of the 29th, Jonah had just passed his birth-weight at 6lbs 12 ounces and Joelle was catching up at 6lbs 4 ounces. 

And just because I can't post a picture of just one of them.... look at her little mohawk :)

Check out other Project 52s at:

And if anyone else wants to link up- let me know!


Taylor said...

Good job, Mama, doing what your babies need to be healthy, even though it is sad and disappointing, and not what you wanted. They will thank you for that some day!

Anonymous said...

I'm just happy that you were so proactive kn getting them onto the right track. Formula and breast milk aside, mommy love and strength will give them nourishment to thrive.

Mrs. Coach said...

Doing the right thing for you and your babies is no ones place to judge, you are doing what is best for your family just like you said. You are a great mom and it just doesn't work for some people.

I still have formula coupons if you want them, just let me know: I'd be so happy to send them to you!!

Nessa Bixler said...

SO glad you figured out what was going on... and I love that mohawk!

Auntie Lynn said...

I'm glad you made that decision, Chelsea. I know that nowdays when breastfeeding is the IN thing to do, it is difficult to make the decisions you have made, but it is really the best for your children. All 4 of my girls were formula babies and grew up just fine and more allergies or health issues than breastfed babies. One tip we used with our youngest daughter, being as she only weighed 5#4oz. due to prematurity was to use preemie nipples on her bottles. She was wearing herself out with regular nipples and would fall asleep from exhaustion before getting enough formula. When she was about 3 months old, she was able to switch to regular nipples. Don't know if you are trying that approach with Jonah or not, but it might be worth looking into. The preemie nipples are much softer and easier for the little ones. You and Jace are wonderful parents and I'm so happy you have decided to go this route. An added benefit......Jace can help with the feeding, too. There's nothing cuter than the way babies look and listen to their daddies while being fed. God bless you all.

christarella said...

You are such a wonderful Mommy to try so hard for so long. Many would have given up after the first week. You are also wonderful to continue to pursue answers for little Jonah too. What a strong advocate you are for him!

Anonymous said...

I am so glad for you & your precious bundles. To Auntie Lynn's point, it's nice to read about a mama who's made the decision to formula feed because it's the best for her babies. I think mamas who read your blog & at some point in the future [might] be in your position will appreciate knowing your story.

Anonymous said...

& love the new header!

Mahina Sayin said...

So glad that the twins are happy and healthy because that is all that matters! And I love the updated blog background and header. This might sound like a silly question, but how did you take that photo? With a tripod?