Thursday, May 14, 2009

Blah blah food blah blah

Ho hum.

I don't know why I am not trying harder. Sheesh. For someone who supposedly "really wants Dylan to learn how to eat solids and drink from a sippy cup", you'd think I might actually encourage the little guy to practice these skills? Good grief, what is my deal? I'm slacking here, people, and I need to MOTIVATE! Right?!

It's just that...I don't know. Maybe it's laziness. Maybe I'm tired. Maybe it's just too much. Too much focus on eating and food and sippys and...just the whole thing. The whole process. I never knew how much work it truly is, this eating business. I guess I never had to know. Now I do.

So, Dylan's Occupation Therapist was here the other day and showed me a whole bunch of different "oral motor warm up techniques" to use to help Dylan get his mouth ready to eat. Ok, let's see, it goes something like this: Before feeding Dylan anything, I am suppose to get a warm wash cloth and rub his cheeks in a particular pattern, rub his gums, the roof of his mouth, his tongue etc. Then, out comes his chewy tube. I need to use this to help strengthen his jaw and practice the chewing motion. Next, I need to get out the puffs, wet them, cut them in half and then stick them into the side of his cheek, one at a time. If he pops it out, I need to pop it back in and wait until he gags, er, I mean swallows it. Repeat. Next we practice the sippy. I have to hold his cheeks together so that he learns to suck rather than bite. THEN, I cut up his prevacid tablet, put it in one teaspoon of water and hope like heck Dylan swallows it rather than spits it out (the stuff is not only pricey, but he reallllly needs his reflux meds so that he doesn't fall back into that uncomfortable "rigid mode"). Lastly, one teaspoon of Milk of Magnesia down the hatch.

Whew. Once all that is accomplished, I feed him his jarred baby food. He loves his baby food and he eats it so well, but the guilt and the worry is getting to me. I feel like he should be eating more solids. I feel like he should be drinking from something (ahem, other than...me). But does he need to be doing these things? Eventually, yes, of course! But right now...I don't know. Ugh, I don't know what I'm doing. I mean, will he learn these things on his own eventually? When HE is ready? Or is this (the washcloth, the chewy tube...) something that I truly truly do need to practice every single day? Because if it's the latter, I seriously need to get my act together. And get motivated to practice his oral motor activities before each meal. Because, to be perfectly honest, I am not doing it as often as I am "suppose" to.

And that means that I am not doing enough. And that's not fair to Dylan.

Ugh. Anyone have any spare motivation and/or energy you can send my way? I would really appreciate it.

**edited to add**
The NUK brush - that's what I forgot. There's the NUK brush rubbing as well....woops, see I am a slacker. I can't even remember all of the steps...

14 comments:

Karly said...

I am still looking for the motivation to fight the battle for independent drinking here. I don't know who is hogging all the motivation, but it's certainly not at this house.

{hugs}

Jackie said...

Hi, I stumbled over from my cousin
Tricia's blog (the price is write). My little man was born June 16th so he and Dylan are the same age. Isaac doesn't have DS but we still rely pretty heavily on breast feeding, so unless you specifically need to work on Dylan's skills as early intervention, I won't stress too much. Just keep working on it slowly and it will come. Of course, I could just be being lazy over here too....

The Lehnick Family said...

Oh Laurie...it can all be overwhelming forsure...We saw Brayden's OT and we are working on the whole sippy cup thing, which he really could care less about...he would rather just drink out of my cup...LOL...no work there...I think it will come with time...not all at once...I too think it is just too much for a little guy to remember...maybe just focus on ONE thing per week and see if he gets the hang of it. If it is the sippy cup, I put it on Brayden's tray everytime he eats so at least he sees it and if he picks it up, I give it a try...but sometimes he doesn't care or just throws it on the ground...so another suggestion is to put it in the bath with him so he can just experiment with it and at play time on the floor. As far as solids, just take it slow...you are doing an amazing job! Don't beat yourself up...it is a lot when you look at the big picture and it is sooooo easy for therapists to say do this, do that...but WE are the ones doing it, NOT them! Dylan is doing wonderful...

Angela said...

Oh, girl, I hear ya.

We're doing fine on foods THANK GOODNESS but UGGGGGGH on the sippy cup. We just started trying the straw cup two days ago. At every meal. It's not going well. And just ends up in frustration. Usually frustration of mine--at Andrew b/c he won't leave the room so I can focus on Benjamin.

I feel the same way about sign language. I *know* he needs it. I am just too lazy about it at this point to do anything about it. Got room on the Bad Mom Bus?

HUGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sharon said...

We all just do what we can. We're having the same issue with Brennan not wanting anything but me and I really should be trying harder on the sippy cup/straw thing.....but I'm just not. And with the feeding, just pick one or two of the things to do with him at each meal. Brennan hated the nuk brush but liked the chewy tube - so I mainly just gave him the chewy instead of torturing him with the nuk. Dylan is eating, growing and happy and loved - you're doing a great job, Laurie.

Amanda said...

Whatever energy I have, I give to you! (unfortunately I'm completely exhausted right now, but you can take whatever I have left.) : ) Hang in there.

Lisa said...

Oh, gosh, Laurie. You're brave for admitting this. I'm right there. I know there are things I should be doing with Finn, and usually I just don't have the energy or motivation. I don't want to spend all our time together practicing every damn thing.

Tausha said...

Oh I so love reading all these comments. I think we are all in the same boat. Sam does well eating, we have been very lucky with that but the sippie cup, he just likes to hold it and chew on it. I get so busy that I forget and then a few days later I remember, oh my gosh I need to work on his sippie cup and then I remember a million other things I should be doing with him and I exhaust myself. I figure I will do my best and he will eventually learn how to do it and I just try to not be to hard on myself. You are a great Mom and are doing the best you can.

devlsfan13 said...

Laurie,
You have two beautiful children who are obviously very LOVED! You do your best, which is all any mom can do. He is learning things and he will continue to do so at his pace. You are encouraging him and I don't think that you have to force yourself to do all of these things with him all the time. Not that I have any experience with Ds, but just speaking as a mom...
As for breastfeeding, again, I don't know if there is some reason related to Ds that he should stop, but you should nurse him as long as it works for you and Dylan. Don't let people tell you that you need to stop at a particular time (unless, of course, you are ready). I love reading your blog... I am becoming more educated and I totally respect how you just "put it all out there" and are so honest. Motherhood is hard, but so rewarding! I really wish we lived closer so I could meet your little angels (and see you!)
~Dani

Bethany said...

Please, how could we possibly keep up? In the earlier days, that was the thing that overwhelmed me the most. You eventually just have to give in and realize you are not super human. I used to give Payton a toothbrush to chew on whenever we were in the car, or whatever. I also got some of those sponges on a stick and would give her those to give her sensory input. She doesn't really have sensory issues other than maybe a bit in her mouth, so this is a good way to maybe let Dylan do it himself. Because really, who has time to do this stuff before every meal?

Bethany said...

Oh, I also wanted to say that we administer prevacid using a medicine syringe ... the plunger kind. We put it in, draw back about 4-5cc of water, let it dissolve and put it in the mouth. It works wonderful. :)

Amy and Aaron said...

Holy cow! I can't believe they are asking you to do all that stuff!! Sometimes I'm glad that we didn't start any EI with M. until he was a year old - I think we missed out of some of that "fun." Is your therapist a parent? Does she have any idea what it's like to take care of a toddler/pre-schooler and a special-needs baby?!! Sometimes it's all I can do to get the boys changed/pottied and fed at all! I don't know how you do it!

farrellx4 said...

Laurie, take a deep breath and know that you are doing just fine! We have ALL been there! It is all overwhelming sooner or later - one of the hardest things for me was to put brakes on and take it at our pace. There is no way for us to do all that we are shown or all that we read - no way. And you will find a comfortable pace that will suit Dylan, you, and your family, without feeling overwhelmed or lazy. And when Dylan is ready, he will show you.. part of this incredible journey is learning how to pace yourself and knowing that our kiddos will write their story in their own time. Not ours.

Hang in there! :)

You are doing a fantastic job!

Amy said...

If he's still mostly bfing and getting all his nutrients then I'm not sure why you need to worry too much about solids. And you are so not slacking. No way would I ever manage to do all that you do.