Sunday, April 5, 2009

Milk Allergies, Eczema, Torticollis, & Plagiocephaly...

This is my sweet, sweet son Parker. I might be biased, but I think he's an absolutely beautiful baby boy, and from the moment he was born, he was my baby. When I was on bed rest the last 8 weeks of my pregnancy, I got a chance to bond with him before he was even born. It was something I didn't experience with the other two. With Aidan, it was my first pregnancy and I didn't know any better, and when I was pregnant with Emma, I was too busy chasing after Aidan. But during that 8 weeks, when I was home alone, I was able to take note of the small things, like Parker's movements, his habits, what times of day he was restful, and when he was active. I would talk to him. I would tell him about the family he was about to be born into. I would sing to him, and make comments while I watched TV :) I would sit for hours with my hand on my stomach and think, think about the child growing inside me, and just how truly miraculous a thing pregnancy is. I had time with Parker to prepare. To prepare to be a mother again, and to prepare to love another child. I have said many times before that I am not a naturally maternal person. That is true. But with Parker, the love came more naturally than before. Giving birth to him, especially without an epidural or drugs, made the experience more personal and intimate. Let me clarifly however, that I will not be doing it natural again, if I can help it :) With Parker I felt, what I had always heard the love of a mother to be...instantaneous. It took time with Aidan and Emma to love them as I do now. I instantly felt an overpowering need to protect them when they were born, but the love and caring came later, slower. Parker, however, was mine from the moment he was born. I think that is why I have spent the last 4 months of his life, very stressed out from worry.

When we brought Parker home from the hospital, I noticed two things. 1. that his skin was ridiculously dry and cracking, and 2. that his head lay only to the right. I didn't think too much of it at the time, but after weeks of trying different creams for his skin, and different positions for his head, I began to worry. At his one month check up, the doctor said everything was fine and that his skin would clear up and that most babies favored one side. However, as another month passed without any change, I knew something wasn't quite right. At his two month check up, the doctor agreed. She diagnosed his skin aliment as ezcema and told me it most likely was the result of a milk allergy. She put us on 3 different fomulas until we ended up on Alimentum, or liqiud gold as we call it. It costs around $27.99 for 16 ounces. He was put on an antibiotic and hydrocortizone cream for his skin, which is now much better. His head, that's another story.

When Parker was inutero he was positioned in such a way, that caused a weakening of one side of his neck muscles, Torticollis. Because of this weakening of his neck muscles, he spent much of his time on one side of his head, causing plagiocephaly. We are meeting with the orthotics (helmet) doctor on Tuesday where they will be doing a head scan to see if a corrective helmet will be needed. We have started physical therapy for his torticollis, and will be going once a week until he has full range of motion.

Aside from all of the trials we have faced with Parker so far, he has been such a blessing to our family.We count our blessings every day that he is "normal" apart from a few physical challenges, and nothing melts my heart more than when he smiles or laughs (a new development in the last few weeks.) I know the next few months of expensive formula, weekly physical therapy, and most likely having to wear a helmet 23 hours a day will be hard on all of us, but Parker's happy disposition makes it all bearable. If he can get through it all with a smile on his face, then so can I! Or, at least I can try...

*UPDATE--We met with the Orthotics people today and Parker had his evaluation. He WILL need a helmet. The insurance end of things will take around 3-4 weeks, and then he will be fitted for his helmet, getting it one to two weeks after that. So, in about a month an a half, I will have the cutest-helmet-wearing-kid around!! And, while I was there, I saw that they have "designer" helmets with airplanes, trains, cars, ect. for no extra charge. I am trying to decide between the white helmet with various cars, trains, and airplanes, or the light blue one with just airplanes.

8 comments:

The Wills Family! said...

What a gorgeous baby boy!

Robyn said...

He really is beautiful! I can't believe how big he's getting already! Seriously! I don't even want to think about a third baby until I see a sweet baby like that!

TrishAnderson said...

He is a cute baby. Don't forget that you have some new friends around that are here to support and love you. Let me know if you need help with Aiden & Emma while at PT or anything else. I would love to help however I can. Thank you for sharing your inner thoughts so we can continue to get to know you better!

Aaron, Vicki Tunell said...

The time goes so quickly, and then he will never even remember he had it on. Parker is so sweet, Noah loves to spend time with him. Hopefully you can make it through, and I'm so interested to see if he'll have his helmet. I know he'll be adorable!

Vicki

sharla@mylittlegems said...

He is a cutie- we have had milk allergies and excema here forever- (I have also had excema since I was two) I'm sure you have plenty of advice- but if you need someone to talk to who has been through that part w/ their kids- please call :) We've gotten the excema under control w/ a few easy things :) Best of luck- it will all work out :) It always does :)

ScottMelanie said...

I vote for blue, but that's because I'm biased. I like it, I like it. Maybe he'll like being a little more protected from Aidan's loving too!
:)

celeste said...

Little Parker is definitely a Carpenter!

Kori said...

You are biased but rightly so - he is a very handsome little boy! I have a friend whose baby boy had torticollis - it did go away and he is stronger now because of all the exercises. Hang in there. It seems helmets are the in thing right now - he will be super cute!

Dane is allergic to eggs and peanuts (hoping he outgrows it) and has eczema just like his daddy (not sure he'll outgrow that). Loved hearing your baby bonding - that is pretty special!