I confess, my patience regarding Landon's feeding/weight issues has finally gotten the best of me. I have pretty much exhausted all possibilities and have felt that it was time for an intervention. Landon turned 21 months yesterday and he has only gained 1/2 a pound since his 18 month check up! That's right folks, Landon now weighs a whole whopping 18 1/2 pounds=( FRUSTRATING!! I have been getting tips from other blogs, friends, "professionals" and nothing has seemed to work LONG TERM (or long enough to pacify me)! I am a pretty patient person, but I do have limits!
Landon's pediatrician gave us a referral to a local feeding clinic. Although Landon is an outpatient at Children's Hospital Boston (Down syndrome clinic), it was unanimous that Landon have his initial evaluation done locally (in case he needs to be seen weekly) and he would be seen in Boston at his next clinical in January! That works for me, as traveling 45 minutes once or twice a week just does not fit in to our schedule!
This afternoon we met with a feeding specialist. The events that have led us there are as follows:
- Landon officially dipped off the Down syndrome growth chart (at his 18 month well-visit in which he weighed in at 18 lbs.)
- Landon still eats stage 2 purees......will not give stage 3's the time of day
- Landon has added "MINIMAL" solids to his menu (Gerber cereal bars, cheerios, Gerber cheese curls, toast w/ hummus, cream cheese and a thin layer of peanut butter, pirates booty, a slice of American cheese (on occasion) and yogurt (well, this is still a puree)
- Landon drinks 3 "bottles" of whole milk a day (at 5oz. a shot) I admit, I have issues with him still taking the bottle.
- Landon recently went to the Dr.'s for his flu shot (2 weeks ago) and weighed in at 18 1/2 lbs.
- Landon "WAS" drinking from his honey bear cup/straw and has since decided that he is so over it!
- Landon will drink from a sippy cup......FOR ME.......but will not consistently do so for others.
- We are not really sure if Landon is "chewing" his food or moving it around his mouth (so that it melts) and then swallows it.
So, I am a bit bothered by the whole bottle thing (it's just not part of MY plan, diagnosis or not, I want him off the bottle by the time he is 2) Selfish on my part, YES!! It frustrates me that he will not take the sippy cup consistently since he is quite capable of drinking from it (STUBBORN on his part, MOST DEFINITELY)! I am frustrated that he can eat purees and pieces of toast (crunchy and all) but will not combine the textures or at least be willing to try something new. We have been stuck on this same menu much longer than I expected. If I give Landon a noodle with alfredo sauce, he will suck the sauce off and spit the noodle out. If I give him a french fry dipped in ketchup, he will suck the ketchup off and spit the french fry out. We have tried mashing and small pieces and putting dinners through the food processor. We have tried different textures and different techniques and the list just goes on. Frankly, I'm tired. I'm tired of TRYING!! Maybe I'm the problem!!! Whatever the case may be, in the best interest of Landon...............I.NEED.HELP!!
We met with the feeding specialist today for about an hour and a half. We went over EVERYTHING from Landon's birth to where he is today. I was asked to bring in a bunch of things that Landon eats (and I took that VERY seriously, lol). I brought a little of EVERYTHING from his menu. I even brought in ALL the different "cups" that we have tried to offer him. YES, I was prepared!!
We began with transitioning between the different foods, and don't you know, that little bugger did so like each bite was the same! HA! The consensus has been that Landon tends to "munch" rather than actually "chew" his food. WELL, today he showed signs that he was actually chewing! Surprise, surprise!! Hmmm, maybe the 6 teeth that he now has, is helping! Then we moved on to drinking. Landon generally will drink (unassisted) from his bottle, for me (pretty consistently). But, lately at home (with grandparents) and at school he has been a little naughty boy taking a sip from his bottle and then throwing it across the room. There have been consequences for that (like having his bottle taken away)......thanks Melissa=) But of course the little show off that Landon is, drank his whole bottle (unassisted) for this complete stranger. Ugh! Finally, we moved on to the sippy cup, which he will drink from "the most" consistently but will whip it at your head as equally consistent. Not today my friends, with a little applauding, he drank from that sippy cup and placed it ever so gently on the table after each sip. SERIOUSLY???!!!
The outcome of this meeting was that the feeding specialist felt like Landon was a good candidate for this program. The pros are that he has no health issues (no underlying problems that are preventing him from progressing). Thyroid and Celiac have already been tested for and ruled out. His tongue thrust is not bad, she feels like with some extra prompting techniques used while eating, that she can help him control it better. Now that Landon has teeth, they will help him break down his food a little better (to avoid choking, giving him more confidence in trying new things). She is very confident that Landon will progress (rather quickly) through this program. However, she felt that we need to place Landon's issues in order of importance.
Our first goal will be to get Landon back on the Down syndrome growth chart. Although it is expected that he will be a bit smaller, we do not want to overlook a "potential" problem. It's best that we address this issue now and stay on top of it. We will be adding a liquid multi-vitamin and we will add 2 bottles of pediasure a day. This will require me to adjust MY plan.....if Landon chooses to do this by bottle only......then the bottle it is. The goal is not to stress him out by changing too many things all at once. OK, I'll give him that (well, maybe a little extension)!! Also, Landon eats about 5 containers of Gerber baby food a day with snacks in between his 3 meals (for a total of 5 "meals" a day). She would like us to add an extra container (to make 2) at breakfast. Hopefully, this will help him to pack on a few pounds.
Landon will have his official weigh in next Friday. We will monitor him for one month. And adjust his plan as needed. The feeding specialist will address some minor issues as we go along. To this day, this has been the one area that Landon and I struggle with. Some days it's just so hard when you see him progressing in every other area. You start to wonder if you are missing something........some significant sign that you are overlooking. And yes, I have a HUGE fear of that!