Sunday, February 10, 2013

Olivia's Tummy and Doctor Nonsense

After several days of improved sleep, Olivia went back to waking up once an hour even though I continued to eat gluten-feee. So I called the doctor's office and made an appointment. The nurse on the phone was very sympathetic, and I had hopes that soon I would know what was wrong and how to make it better.

Instead, the doctor told me that there was nothing wrong with her tummy and I just needed to turn off the monitor for ten hours a night. During the appointment I was so tired that it all sounded reasonable, if disheartening. We never ignored Alessia's cries during the night, but the doctor assured me that different babies need different approaches. So I went home and ate a sandwhich on wheat toast, ordered the book the doctor recommended, and had a good cry. We weren't prepared to turn the monitor off that night, so we did our ususal routine. Well the wheat sandwhich did a number on Olivia's tummy that night. So that was strike one against the doctor. Obviously what I ate did effect her. The next day, with a slightly clearer head I remembered going through all this with Alessia. Now Alessia never woke up once an hour for several weeks straight, but her sleep did have its up and downs. Throughout, people recommended we just turn off the monitor, and throughout it all, we continued to respond to her cries. In remembering all of that, I remembered all my counter arguments to the doctor's arguments in favoring of allowing my tiny baby to cry all night.

In the meantime I went back to eating gluten-free and for two nights Olivia went back to her usual routine of waking up every three hours. (Strike two against the doctor who told me that once a baby is used to waking up once an hour it will never get better on its own.) Then yesterday I ate eggs for breakfast and made muffins with eggs and butter in them. Well, Olivia was up all night with gas pain again. It occured to me that the reason her sleep got better when I first went gluten-free and then got bad again was that it wasn't for a few days after going gluten-free that I bought and made gluten-free cookies, both of which contain eggs and butter. The day after the doctor's appointment I was out and it wasn't until Saturday that I cooked eggs again.

So, for a bit, I will be eating gluten-free, egg-free, and butter-free. Cheese doesn't seem to be a problem, nor does a small amout of milk on my oatmeal in the morning. It's the rich dairy like butter and cream. I debated calling the doctor and telling her all this, but I'm not sure it's worth my time. She obviously felt she knew exactly what the problem and answer were before even talking to me, and she is not our usual doctor anyway.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Maybe It's Not Wheat

Eliminating wheat had an immediate, positive impact on Olivia's sleep.... for about a week. For the past week we have been back to waking up once an hour all night long. So the question is did I replace all that wheaty goodness in my diet with something else that is also problematic? I've been eating a lot of dairy lately, and when she was about three months old, too much milk in my diet made Olivia gassy. So I'm going dairy free for a few days, in addition to going gluten free. If this doesn't help fairly quickly (and from what I have read, even if dairy is the problem it can take weeks for it to work itself completely out of our systems) we will be going to the doctor. I hate to go that route, as I'm sure it will mean special trips to specialists and needles and needless worrying, but I'm in danger of falling apart from lack of sleep and need an answer, and the fact of the matter is there are so many things it could be - nuts, trace amounts of gluten, eggs, peanut butter, soy, and on and on. The breastfeeding-powers-that-be recommend an "elimination diet" of nothing but turkey, lamb, potatoes, rice, zucchini, and pear for TWO weeks, but that might make me more crazy than the lack of sleep.

So once again, here is a cute picture of Olivia.