Monday, July 7, 2008

Weight a Minute

I am obsessed with Evie's weight.

I wasn't always this crazed. She was small at birth (6lbs, 4oz) but her doctor reassured me that she was perfectly within the normal range. After we got her reflux and food intolerances in check, she nursed well and her weight went up, up, up. She made it all the way to the 25th percentile.

But then she started to slide. Looking back, I think it was because she crawled and walked on the early side of the curve. We also changed pediatricians about this time. Dr. Hartman mentioned that she was concerned that Evie was dropping on the charts. Now, she wasn't losing weight. She just wasn't growing along the same curve she had been. We took a "wait and see" approach. Dr. Hartman began to schedule us for weight checks every three weeks.

Then she was sick a few times. She had a terrible stomach virus ON THANKSGIVING DAY and an ear infection. The antibiotics made her have tummy problems, which was no help. At a few of her weight checks, she had actually lost weight. I was so upset that I cried right there in front of the scale! Dr. Hartman must have thought I was a nut! She started talking about Cystic Fibrosis (which Evie had already tested negative for when she had pneumonia.) I looked this up on the internet (always a reliable source of information,) and it mentioned you test children with Failure to Thrive for CF. FAILURE TO THRIVE??? She was walking before she was ten months old, she said "dog" before she was a year old. FAILURE TO THRIVE??? Oh, God -- I knew she was going to wither away.

Once she could eat dairy, I started putting butter on everything. I even let her eat it plain, if she wanted. I racked my brain trying to think of ways to add calories to her diet. Ranch dip? Check. Ice cream? Check. Chocolate? Check. She prefers asparagus or broccoli or blueberries, but she eats some of the high-calorie stuff too, probably just to make me happy.

And then Evie leveled off - just under the 3rd percentile. Dr. Hartman was satisfied that nothing was wrong with her, but she still wanted to keep an eye on things. Of course, I have never settled down. Daily, no wait, many times a day, I think about her weight. I hate it when a stranger comments about how tiny or petite or small she is. I feel like I have to justify it. "I feed her. I am a good mom, I swear!"

But lately I have met so many moms who also have petite children. They are at the grocery store and the pool. They all have stories about seeing Pediatric GIs or teams of nutritionists. The kids are getting older, and they are all just fine. Thriving, in fact.

So I'm starting to loosen up a little tiny bit. Evie is just small. She isn't sick. I'm not a bad mom. She's tiny. Tiny is cute. Maybe this will be good in the future if she wants to be a cheerleader or a gymnast. I'm not obsessing over everything she does or doesn't put in her mouth.

Now, I have to remember to add butter to the grocery list.


Rachel said...

I thought that you should read the blog titled "In Sickness and in Health."

When I read it I immediately thought of you and Evie.

Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories said...

Oh my, my, my. I could have totally written this post. The petite child? Check. The tears in the docs office when she was being weighed? Check. I am right with you sister. Mine was 16 lbs. at 1 year old, and she just wouldn't keep weight on. I was FREAKING out, piling on butter and avocadoes and cheese and whatever else I could give her. She was off the charts for so long that we REJOICED when she finally made it all the way to the 5th percentile (woohoo). So do not worry. Your child is perfectly fine, she is just following her own growth curve and will be a lovely delicate flower. :) Mine is 2 1/2 now and can still fit into some 12 mos. clothes. ha!