Well, here goes nothing. I’m trying to figure out this blog thing, but I’m just going to dive in and see what happens. As you can see in my “about” section, our family has dealt with multiple health challenges. But since the kids were born I have really changed my views about healthcare in general. As a pediatric nurse I was trained mainly in regard to conventional health care. I have a BSN from the University of Arizona. I think my school was pretty open minded about holistic health care, alternative medicine, or whatever name you wish to call it by. I remember we touched on a few topics in this regard.
But I didn’t really take much interest in the natural solutions for health until after I had children. My first baby was colicky and probably a bit spoiled. I managed to breastfeed him after some challenges including the fact that he had an undiagnosed tongue tie. I think for the first 3-4 months that was all he wanted to do with his day. I think when he got between a year and two years I felt something wasn’t quite right, but I couldn’t put my finger on exactly what it was. He was a nightmarish toddler, couldn’t keep still and concentrate on any quiet play. It seemed like he just moved from destroying one item to the next, as we were fixing the first. He was later diagnosed with Sensory Integration Dysfunction, or DSI. (After a long search we found an OT who treats this, and we are also working with nutritional supplements.)
When our first child was almost 2 1/2 we had our second baby, another boy. Everything seemed fine with him until he was approaching 4 months of age and was not yet holding up his head. At his 4 month checkup our pediatrician said that he had “done nothing for gross motor development” since birth. The doctor’s plan was to recheck him in 2 months, but I was not comfortable with this so I called the birth to 3 hotline to have him evaluated. He was delayed in all areas except early speech development. To top that off, the same day he had his 4 month checkup, we saw the first blood in his bowel movement. (After the appointment, of course). To keep this short, he was eventually diagnosed with the allergic colitis. At 9 1/2 months we put him on elemental formula, but he really didn’t end up improving much and this was a bad decision. Because I could not accept the fact that a child could not tolerate breastmilk, this started my off toward “alternative medicine” for good.
We are fortunate to live near the University of Bridgeport School of Naturopath. who have a very affordable clinic. We saw Debra Anastasio, ND as the attending (supervising the students that saw my son and I). She was very knowledgeable and helpful. We were able to treat my baby successfully with supplements and probiotics. With the help of an excellent IBCLC named Jennifer Tow, I was able to resume nursing my son and let him wean naturally when he was ready. He is now healthy and thriving and tolerating a wide variety of foods. He has done so well catching up on his development that he now does not appear to qualify to move from the birth to 3 services into the special preschool our local district has. He does have low muscle tone, but his gross and fine motor skills are age appropriate. His expressive and receptive language are also age appropriate, though we are still waiting to find out about articulation. He has come such a long way and we are so pleased!
With the kids health being addressed, I felt it was time to work on my own health. After all, unhealthy parents cannot have healthy children. While my health is still a work in progress, I have found great nutritional supplements that are helping me feel better and have more energy. I’ll continue with that in my next post.