Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I Can Not Believe My Eyes!

So yesterday Aiden had is first official feeding appointment, the first first one was the evaluation in order to see if he needed services. Now that insurance approved us for 8 sessions we were back to see Rachel again to start conquering his whole aversion thing. We have been working on our homework, which was to feed him solids without him lunging at them, instead he needed to use his upper lip to close down on the spoon. We were also working on the whole bottle feeding thing and his aversion to even letting the nipple near his mouth. (See feeding issues for more about that.) We made great progess with the solid foods and she was very impressed with how well he was doing. When it came to the whole bottle thing though I thought for sure we were going to get a big F on our report card for homework because he was still screaming at the bottle and all the new nipples we had tried. So, when I went to show her what he had been doing for the past 2 weeks, he totally made me look like a big, fat liar and took the nipple in his mouth with no problem! I sat there for a few seconds thinking maybe there was going to be a delayed reaction. Much to my surprise, my husband's and the OT specialist (Rachel), he started to not only chomp on it to get milk out but actually tried to SUCK!!!! I could not believe my eyes. Here is this little guy who has given me such a headache trying to get him to take these different nipples for two weeks and then all of the sudden he goes for them with no hesitation, but actually with lots of interest and satisfaction in his ability. The little turkey! SO, for the first (and second, and third by now) time in nine months, 6 days and 22 hours he took his own bottle, unassisted. I know for most that doesn't seem like much, but for those of us with cleft babies, where feeding is such a hands on ordeal at times, this was a huge moment. To be able to sit back with him craddled in my arms, him holding his own bottle, and just enjoy the moment without having to do anything. No squeezing, holding, aiming at his mouth, NOTHING. Alexis said, "Maybe now I can feed my brother too." This is a sister bonding thing she has not been able to do, that is up until this point. Now we just have to see if he will sit still long enough for her to try. He is pretty heavy and strong at this point. And, maybe, just maybe, this now means that our friends can watch him since they don't have to worry about feeding him in a special way. Could a date be in my future? I won't hold my breath, but sure hoping there is.

So, although he has made this HUGE leap in his feeding progress, we are going to keep working on his positioning of the bottle (he definetely favors his non-clefted side) and the mobility of his upper lip. Great progress has been made and I am sure he will continue to amaze me. Thanks to everyone for their thoughts and prayers on this matter. I am still in disbelief.


  1. Well that little stinker! He just wanted to make Mommy look silly. LOL. He's been taking his bottles okay since yesterday when he demonstrated the great skill??

    He's a smart boy, he is!

  2. Wow!!! That is amazing! Nice work Aiden! I totally relate to the "could a date be in my future" feeling. :) I sure hope so! Yay!!!

  3. What great news. Don't you hate it when the kiddos just have to prove us wrong, and of course it is always in from of the doctor.

  4. Well, that's ok if it took a doctor's appt. to cure him. At least he's cured!! I love when they can hold their own bottle!!! Aidan can do it when his bottle is almost finished, but then it's usually not lined up right. But he doesn't complain!

    And yes, I hear ya on getting someone to EASILY watch him. With no special feeding instructions. That'll be nice!

  5. Hi Joy,
    I haven't kept up with the blog, I'm sorry for that, but I came over tonight to check you all out. I think your son is a perfect little turkey :) I'm so happy that he is taking the bottle now, and I was pretty amazed with your husbands talent. By the way he is growing in the pictures, I would have never known he is having trouble eating! I think of you often, Merry Christmas~ Nichole