How To Feed A Baby And Not Lose Consciousness Trying

December 18, 2008

My baby? Is a big baby. At 7 months old, he’s a husky, roly-poly, chubby-cheeked, fat-thighed chunk of Gerber baby who looks nearly a half year older than his age. He is, as his doctor said at his last post-natal visit, robust. Which is not surprising, because he nurses more or less around the clock. I mean, he was big to begin with, but a steady diet of booby has kept him on an upward curve on the growth charts. Which is great and all, but I’m getting a little tired of being the sole source of nutrition for a ravenous jumbo-tot. The problem is, he won’t take solid food or a bottle or indeed any source of nutrition that does not come wrapped in a nursing bra.

He just won’t do it. I’ve tried. I try every day: rice cereal, oatmeal, mashed fruits, mashed veggies, mashed fruits and cereal, mashed veggies and cereal, cereal with formula, formula with cereal, cereal with expressed milk, everything. But if it comes on a spoon or in a bottle, he just won’t take it. He’ll actually grab the spoon from me, shake the food off, and then gnaw cheerfully on it until I wrestle it away from him again and try to slip a little cereal into its bowl, at which point he hoots angrily, grabs the spoon, shakes off the cereal, and we start all over again. If I manage to get any into his mouth without him grabbing the utensil away – it just seems wrong, a little too close to waterboarding or some other Guantanamo-like exercise, to hold his arms down for the purposes of getting the spoon in – he makes a sour face and tries to push it out of his mouth. It’s a little frustrating.

It’s a little frustrating because I suspect that a rapidly-emptying belly is what keeps waking him up at night. I just don’t think my humble boobies are up to the task of keeping him filled for hours at a stretch. He’s a big guy, and I imagine that he’s got a big tummy tucked away in that pudgy belly of his. A big tummy that I can’t fill.

I’ve read that some babies just aren’t ready for food until closer to eight, nine, or even ten months. I’ve read that breastmilk is sufficient for most babies in their first year. I’ve read that some babies bypass soft foods altogether, and refuse to eat anything until they’re ready for more solid varieties of solid food (Jasper does, I should note, like organic teething biscuits. He holds them in his hand and gums happily away until they’ve turned to mush.) I don’t think that there’s anything wrong him – at least, I hope that there isn’t – but I am at the very end of my coping-rope and will soon reach the point of utter collapse if I don’t get a full night’s sleep soon. And because it has become clear to me that he is waking from hunger, I need to deal with his hunger before I can get some rest. I need that rest.

I need that rest BAD.

So what do I do?





Congratulations to the winner of last week’s What Would Linus Do? Good Karma GiveawayMaria! Maria asked for a donation to a pediatric ward, so I’ll make the donation to Toronto’s Sick Kid’s Hospital. And because Maria asked to pass on the iPod shuffle, I did a second random draw and the winner is ZombieDaddy. (ZombieDaddy, could you get in touch with me with your address?)

Also… I need ideas on how I might pay forward the wonderful experience that Emilia and Jasper I had last week. Money’s tight, so it needs to be something that draws more upon spirit than cash. Thoughts? Leave your ideas here. Whoever leaves the idea that I choose gets a Scrabble Diamond Anniversary Edition game…

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    Amanda December 21, 2008 at 11:21 pm

    Fin loves to nurse too. At 8 months and “robust” she seems to be doing fine, but I too yearn for sleep. We live and die by the mesh bag. She LOVES it. I think, more so than our middle daughter, she aspires to be big. So the mesh bag lets her feel like a big girl and has the added bonus of offering the calories of whatever we tuck inside.

    As to paying it forward, I am all for anything that spreads good cheer. I s’pose a “fuck it” campaign, to give us all the permission to just let things go; whether it’s anger, self-loathing or whatever…just a bog, “Hey, let’s play nice and act right in ’09″ campaign…?

    Kristy - Where's My Damn Answer December 22, 2008 at 1:18 pm

    Hey Lady :-D … come check out the award show on our blog – you are a recipient!!

    cheesefairy December 23, 2008 at 6:13 pm

    Oh rotten rotten stuff.. babies are so crazy.

    Mine (8 m/o) only wakes up a couple times a night & likewise will not take a bottle, but I am still feeling about 30 seconds away from a nervous breakdown what with the 2.5 year old busting my balls all day long.

    My assvice: I bought a rubbermaid juice box with a straw; the straw is really short so it doesn't puncture his soft palate. Put water in it. He learned to use it in half an hour. Am guessing he would drink other fluids from it as well. But not the Grand Marnier, that's for me.

    daysgoby December 24, 2008 at 1:18 am

    HURRAH for a sippy cup! Way to go Jasper!

    Anonymous December 24, 2008 at 6:10 pm

    Gotta love the sippy cup!

    becks December 26, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    My daughter was 10 months old before she ate anything other than boob. She’s almost 2 now and I can count on one hand the number of times she’s let me feed her. Boil some sweet potato, cut it up into little cubes and let him feed himself. That’s the only way I could get my daughter to eat.

    becks December 26, 2008 at 4:06 pm

    If you’re worried about choking, make them small and dole them out one at a time.
    I’ve also been known to give the babies (a little older than yours, maybe 9 months or so) a mango pit. The pit is too big to swallow and there’s always some flesh left on it… also, makes an awesome (but messy) teether. December 29, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    my 16 month old still wont eat much. Oh he CAN, when he gets hungry enough if I am gone, he will take the edge off. Sometimes he like to eat with us… but still all night everynight I am rolling over popping the boob in and eventually rolling bck over and sleeping. No food suggestions helped. I think your best bet is what moxie said. If you need a night off, take it, it will suck for the baby and the hubby… but if you need sleep you need sleep.

    I hope before 2 my little guy decides food is good. otherwise weaning will SUCK.

    roz January 10, 2009 at 8:23 pm

    I know you wrote this weeks ago and everything`s probably changed, but someone raved to me about the book Child of Mine:Feeding with Love and Good Sense by Ellyn Satter. I bought it, it was a godsend and it`s totally helping me with Baby2.0. You might take a gander. Good luck!

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