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Friday, March 27, 2009


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Violet was one of those slow-growing babies. People never stopped making me feel like there was something MORE I should be doing. We took her to a pediatric GI for her reflux, and the nurse who weighed her actually said to me, "Oh, she's at the bottom of the chart. We really prefer for all children to be near the 50th percentile." People in the family often mentioned how if I would just give her formula, she'd start growing fine. Thankfully, we have a very supportive pediatrician who assured me I was doing everything I possibly could. Plus, this child was beating milestones left and right. Sure, she was only 17 lbs. at a year, but she had a 20-word vocabulary! (Which I also can't brag about, because it's not like I sat her down with flashcards or something.)

That was my really long-winded way of saying that I agree with everything you said. ;)

Diane - your comment about "all children to be near the 50th percentile" made me laugh and laugh and laugh. SOMEONE has to be near the bottom or the top! or the chart would BE all 50th percentile (or so I surmise, since I'm horrible with numbers).

As for don't do this, or your baby will always... You're right on, Arwen! Especially since it's always said with that voice of doom doom doom (as if it's the Worst Thing Ever in Parenting if your baby is always doing x, y, or z...).

I always get the compliments on how fast the baby is growing and I wonder what they think I am doing. (Of course, I have oversupply too and only nurse one side at a time too. Maybe we are on to something? I haven't tried two in a row though.)

Frankly, it would be more convenient if she weren't growing so fast. She's massively heavy (she's outstripped the rate at which my back muscles can keep up with her) and she grows out of her clothes in five minutes.

I've had 4 slow growing babies and I thank you for your comments. One pediatrician tried to make me feel like it was my fault, and I guess genetically speaking it was, but it wasn't for lack of trying to get as much into the little one as possible.
As for The Warnings - they are all meant to be ignored. You are the one who knows what your children need, as long as you follow your instincts, your kids will turn out just fine! That is the best piece of advice I was given and I live by it!

My Nicky is three and STILL needs Mom next to him to sleep, still wants to nurse (often) and STILL wakes up at night and joins us in our bed to sleep. (Woke up this morning and he was there, I didn't even wake up when he came in)

Sigh... he is the ONLY one I co-slept with (of five), and is the only one who, at three, doesn't sleep on his own and is still nursing, and now I am seriously wondering if it was us, or is it just HIS personality?

Name that movie: You've got Mail

Glad you got an easy going baby this time round :)

Jeanne, if it makes you feel any better, I'd guess that it *is* personality; my siblings and I all coslept, my two children have coslept (the younger is only 3 mos. so she still is) and one of my siblings was a lot like your Nicky for a while - fear not, it did pass by the time he was about four (except that he was weaned much earlier). The rest of us, not so much!

The Awful Warnings remind me of what you wrote the other day at F&F about appreciating the fleetingness of babyhood much more the second time around. So what if she doesn't go to sleep without being nursed? I'll never be close to her in that way again after she's two or so - why begrudge the time now? And while so far I've had two Godzilla babies, all it takes is a look at family history to see that this was pretty much out of my control from the beginning. I'm with Miss Manners in "not understanding why babies seem to be valued by the pound."

You are so right on about The Warning. We got so many about how she would never sleep through the night if we kept up (whatever we were doing at the time.) I always just said something about her sleeping through the night when she was ready. Then one day she slept through the night. And she's only had a handful of night wakings in the months following. Makes me SO glad I didn't try to make her because obviously she started doing it when SHE was ready.

Also, I really enjoyed your post at Faith and Family about kids growing up. I have realized lately that I can't know when (or if) we will be blessed with another so I should try and enjoy these moments a little more.

Arwen, I'm quite a new reader, but I just cannot get over how similar so many things are in your life to mine... everything down to our ages, the ages of our children, the huge oversupply issues (re b/f), the rapid growth of our children, the primary infertility, the desire for a large family, even your sister falling pregnant easily first time around... mine did too, while I was struggling... my sister had a boy, I had a girl, and now they're great friends! Seriously, the similarities are freakish. Did I mention we were due around the same time and both went early? Only I've had another girl this time. Needless to say, I'm a big fan, and I look forward to sharing your journey over time, and hopefully the building of our families. You're doing such a great job... inspiring stuff!

I'm so happy to hear that your sweet little boy is easygoing and low-maintenance. You deserve it! My first was high-needs as well and my second was SO easy. I completely know what you mean about being AMAZED when you just lay them down and they fall asleep. It's like a miracle! (Fair warning though, my third makes my first look easy!)

Congrats on the progress with Camilla's sleep too! I had the same experience-- one day you just *know* they're ready and it's not awful to help them have some independence. And when it goes well--what a parental boost of confidence!

I am responding to the part about slow-growing babies. Our youngest, Jacob, was very ill at birth through his first three years of life and it was a miracle that he lived. At 11 months he was a tiny little 9 pounds. People use to say to me, "He is so tiny! Don't you feed him?!" It took everything in me to not respond with, "Feed him?? Oh my goodness...we never thought of that!!" But as I have posted before, that was 14 years ago and now our son is healthy and a perfect size. But I remember those comments as if they were yesterday. Sometimes you wonder how a gown adult could be so my Dad use to say, "They must have been in the restroom when God was passing out commen sense."

Dang, Joy B beat me to it. I'm glad I'm not the only person who finds that movie eminently quotable :)

Couldn't agree more about people and their Warnings. Sigh.

Arwen, I'm curious, are you getting any comments about how Blaise is probably an easier baby because you're more experienced now and you know what you're doing? Because I just bet that I'd get those comments if we were to have an easy baby next time. And it would make me want to punch something. Hard!

My pediatrician told me that people with small kids are worried that they're too small, and people with big kids are worried that they're too big. **Sigh** Our 25-month-old is in the 98% percentile plus for height and usually 5-10% lower for weight, and is bigger than many of her three-year-old playmates. I've had (otherwise good) friends imply (okay, and I'm being generous using that word) that she was overweight and call her a "bruiser." Honestly. Since when is "bruiser" a complimentary term for a little girl?? We have a tall family! Do we really need to start with American body image issues in infancy?

Oh, I'm sorry, were you asking for my rant? Probably not. :-) I guess what made me think of this is that I was wondering if you get different reactions than I do because Blaise is a boy and there's a more positive cultural perception that boys are supposed to be big. Curious.

I would love to hear how you got her in her own bed, that has been worrying me since my own 14 month old still co-sleeps.

As a mother who initially struggled with my milk supply, it's so refreshing to hear your perspective. Maybe it was imagined, but I always felt like mothers of robust babies were boasting about their copious milk supply. At least one of them wasn't/isn't.

By the way, you have an award on my blog. :-)

Just saw your twitter about the reflux. Hang in there!!! I had good days and bad days, good feedings and nightmare feedings with Monica. As with all things, this too shall pass. I'll say a prayer.

Just to add, my 9 month old is 15 pounds, 13 oz. at 6 months she was 14 pounds. At this rate, she'll be under 20 pounds at a year. We're not worried. I think her size makes her content to not push to crawl, etc, but there is NO rush for them either. She's happy, interactive, and a blessing!!

My son was born at 1 pound and 14.5 ounces. At 8 months old he was nearly 17 pounds, and we were told that his weight is now a problem due to his length-to-weight ratio. I was appalled! This is the baby that we nearly lost many times, and now I'm supposed to consider him obese?

Watch out for that second easy baby! It encourages a third pretty quick (said in good jest, of course -- bring on baby #3. :))

My first was high-needs, my second was the Happiest Baby Ever (TM). My third came two years and one day after my second, all because Isaac was soooo chill. Naomi, our third, is somewhere in between the boys' need levels.

I honestly think the Lord sometimes gives us an easier baby after a high needs one to assure us; if you raise two kids with the same methods and they have different temperaments, then temperament has obviously nothing to do with your methods. (Does that amke any sense?)

Blessings to your little brood, Arwen.

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