Archive for the ‘Things That Didn’t Work’ Category

R., our Nanny Hopeful, came last week, on Monday and Thursday for 4 hours each day. She was recovering from a bad cold. She had said she was well, only coughing a little at night. Not so! She practiced the hygiene rituals of a normal person instead of one whose child spent three months in the NICU. She coughed. Into her hands. She did not wash them immediately. She showed no signs of being a purell junkie, despite product placement throughout our apartment. Wifey and I were a nervous wreck, googling the contagious life-span of various illnesses.  Mister Finn got sick. I got sick. Wifey got sick. I daresay the dog looked sick.

Maybe if she had been coming for 4 months and this was the first time sickness was spread, it would not have been so doomed?  But alas, ONE week, the only week, and one complete round of sick. Not good odds. So, it simply isn’t worth it, due to A.’s former-preemie-fragile-lungs status, and our former-preemie-challenged-nerves.  R. takes care of three other kids, as well as having a Life, you know, in the germ-infested World, so she is probably sick a lot. I guess “normal” parents are fine with their babies being sick all the time? I see these little germy cherubs: They stick their fingers up each others noses and get snot all over their toys and have coughing caregivers and then they are sick and it is no big deal?  Isn’t that what daycare is?  Is that what it means to be a normal parent? I guess we’ll be normal parents in May, when his lungs are no longer considered fragile, and RSV season is over. But will we be able to let him engage in this wanton behaviour?  I know it is inevitable come pre-school;  but before then? I guess part of this dilemma is selfish, as I myself don’t want to get sick all the time.

A. is fine; it was just a snotfest, with only one miserable day and night. He slept with us for the first time, and it was really sweet. He nursed several times that night with his stuffy nose, and made little snuffles with each suck.

It really stinks that our part-part-part-time nanny didn’t work. She was my ticket to the studio.

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I was optimistic about this fruit (yes, did you know avocado is a fruit?  did you know that a fruit is a ripened ovary?) because several mothers I know had great luck with it as a first food.  Not so for us. There was much gagging, yet no vomiting as with the peas. I mashed the avocado with a fork and mixed in breast milk; but maybe it was still too clumpy?  

So here is our running tally of food:


  • sweet potatoes
  • pears
  • carrots 
  • prunes


  • rice cereal (unless mixed in small quantities with Accepted Foods)
  • avocado
  • all of the Accepted Foods, in random yet frequent episodes of protest of varying intensity and duration

Banned in Horror:

  • peas

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We gave Mister Finn peas and he looked at us in utter disgust, insulted, like “WHY would you put this in my mouth?” Then he gagged dramatically and threw up.  Bananas had a similar fanfare.  There is an element of betrayal in his facial expressions. Too bad when this happens because then we have to wait a week to try a new food. (He has mild excema so we are being cautious.) He’s not really keen on anything so far except pears, and after half a jar, they, too, end in tears. I don’t know if it all just gets to be too much at some point?   Are babies generally emotional eaters?

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How ironic that I wrote this post the other day, and today discovered that NO ONE will be drinking my frozen and defrosted milk, whether bought, donated, put on cereal or in coffee.

This is the second milk crisis for me. The first one was the thing that finally tipped me into official Depression at the time.

It turns out that I am one of the very few women (ah, that phrase again!) who produce too much lipase in their milk. Lipase is an enzyme that breaks down fats. If there is too much lipase, the milk spoils faster, even if it is stored in optimum (optimal?) circumstances.

For the first milk crisis, we had to dump gallons of milk.  This was a few months ago. One day I thought I’d taste A’s milk and nearly threw up. I hadn’t tasted his bottles before because I assumed that since the milk was properly stored, there was no chance it could be bad. Yet, there it was, bad.  I did research, read about the possibility of the lipase problem, but thought it wasn’t likely since it is relatively rare. (When will I learn?).  I decided to believe it had gone bad because it had been schlepped one too many times in and out of neighbors’ freezers.  Many many many hours of pumping down the drain. I had been saving up, thinking that I could stop pumping sooner and A would still have breastmilk aka “liquid gold” to drink to his heart’s content.

Since the Crisis, we tasted every bag of defrosted milk for a while, but gradually stopped because we assumed it was fine. Today I tasted it and nearly vomited.  So, more gallons down the drain.

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Well it did work in the sense that a baby was indeed pulled out of it, and it was indeed stapled shut, and then a week later it did, indeed, open.

This is rare, but does occasionally happen. I could apply that sentence to much of my babymaking experience.

My lovely wife had to stuff my 5-inch-wide, 1.5-inch-deep wound with gauze twice a day for 6 weeks, until it healed from the inside out.  It hurt. She is very squeamish, and nearly passed out when the doctor said she had to do it. But she rose to the challenge and performed brilliantly.



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