Family: Happy 1 month, Penelope

It’s hard to believe this little lady has only been out of my belly for 1 month (+ some change) when it feels like she’s been in our family forever. 


It’s been one of the most challenging months, but also one of the most fulfilling. Even though it’s a bit of a blur right now, I’m thankful to be these babies’ mama, and excited that our little family is complete. I keep telling myself that it’s temporary; not only the hard parts that make you want to pull your hair out (like when both kiddos are screaming at the same time), and the beautiful parts that you want to bottle up and save for later, like when Liv puts her cheek up to P’s and says, “It’s me, your big sister.” Babies truly don’t keep, and I take every chance I get to smell P’s sweet baby hair, quietly observe the way Liv sweetly talks to her, let her snore on my chest, talk to her in my best “goo goo ga ga” voice (guilty of totally baby-talking ALL babies. And dogs), and just soak up these moments. The reflux has been a tough situation to deal with, especially because I’m exhausted and worried sick that she’ll start choking again, but as you guys said, one day it will be something we look back on and relate to other parents going through the same thing. “Remember when P had reflux? Yeah that was horrible. I’m glad it’s over.”  We’re definitely ready to find medicine that works for her and for the reflux to be a memory, because it breaks my heart to see her in pain.

1month 3

Some thoughts from the first month:

-I can’t help but wonder what it would have been like if I did let the doctors induce me. I think P stayed in my belly for so long for a reason; she really wasn’t ready to come out. We’ve had such a laundry list of (small, thank goodness) situations, it makes me thankful that we waited until she was ready to make it into the world. 

-I never thought I would say it, but breastfeeding is awesome. With Liv, I had a really hard time with breastfeeding because we had to introduce a bottle so early. She refused to breastfeed, so I had to exclusively pump, which I really disliked, but I wanted to give her breastmilk as long as possible. Every time I turned on the pump, my toes would curl. This time around, I told myself that I would try it out, add formula as needed, and not beat myself up if we needed to switch to only formula. I’m so thankful that P will go from breast to bottle no prob (for now- this could always change), so I’ve been able to actually breastfeed from the left side and then top her off with formula. During the night feeds, it’s pretty convenient to feed her without having to wait for a bottle to warm up. I’m also glad that I stuck it out through the initial parts: pain from the tongue tie, feeding with SNS tubes, and just getting the hang of things. Having awesome lactation consultants made a world of difference. (If you are in SD and  expecting, go see Robin at San Diego Breastfeeding Center. She doesn’t know I have a blog or anything like that, but I wanted to spread the word because she is incredible. They do private consultations and free bi-weekly group meetings.)

-I wanted to ask my fellow reflux mamas what you used for baby wearing. If it’s been a while since P’s last meal, I can wear her in the K’Tan for a little while. I can’t do it right after a meal because it squeezes her stomach too much. Is a sling better? Or maybe the Ergo? I’m going to try the Babyhawk once she has better head control. Also, if anyone is interested in an unused Solly Baby wrap, let me know. I think P will likely outgrow it before we can use it. 

-Reflux update: currently, she’s on Zantac and we have some ok nights, and some terrible nights. She’ll arch her back and cry until she spits up multiple times. We’ve elevated the head of the bassinet, hold her upright after feedings (about 20 minutes), I’ve given up dairy (which has been harder than expected, but I’m willing to do anything to see if it can help her), she’s on hypoallergenic formula for top-off, we’ve switched to Ventair bottles, and she’s seen the chiropractor a couple of times. We have a referral to the GI specialist, but the wait is about two months to get in. Our next visit to the pediatrician is today, and I’m hoping she has some ideas for the next steps. We’ll likely be changing meds, and I’m going to request an ultrasound and blood allergy test. Her doctor didn’t think it was Pyloric Stenosis but I want to make sure that it isn’t something structural. 

Penelope likes:

Her big sis. Her face lights up when Liv talks to her, and you can already tell that these two have a special bond. Liv calls her “Cutie girl” and “Smiley girl” 

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Having her hair brushed


“This little piggy”

When I sing kirtan songs to her before nap – she closes her eyes and it’s adorable

Dad’s funny faces

She hates:

Being cold

The carseat

Being wet

Refluxing 🙁 

When she feels well, she’s the sweetest, calmest baby and will coo and smile.

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I’m excited to see more of her little personality as time goes on and what the next month has in store. Fingers crossed it involves feeling better for this little lady. Thank you again to all of you who have sent emails and comments with love, and to those of you who have offered your tips and suggestions. It’s one of the many reasons I’m thankful for this little space on the internets. 

We love you, Miss P. <3



Baby P is here

The birth story, Part 1

Part 2 of the birth story

Home for the holidays

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  1. It’s funny that you mentioned getting rid of your solly wrap because that’s what I was going to suggest! My little guy had reflux and he basically lived in the solly for the first 5 months or so. Napping upright in the solly with us bouncing on an exercise ball was the only way we could get him to take naps until we got his reflux under control 🙁 But I highly recommend it!

    • Fitnessista says:

      how long did it take until he was feeling better? i’ll try the solly again, but she doesn’t seem super comfy in wraps right now unless it’s been at least an hour since her last meal

  2. Reflux is so hard on baby and mama! My heart goes out to both of you!

    Does the reflux make her congested? Our son threw up (spit up, whatever you want to call it – we were both soaking wet) his whole bottle every night before bed and at least one other time during the day. His also made him congested, which then made him gag and up came the bottle. So we started suctioning his nose really well (so that it pulled the drainage out of his throat as well) with the nose frieda and saline drops a couple times a day and always before his last bottle of the day and it made a world of difference. Obviously, it was just one piece of the puzzle, but in the 2 months we have been doing that, we almost never get the entire bottle back. We also switched to a halo sleepsack swaddle b/c it was tight on his arms, but not so tight on his tummy which seemed to help!

    • Fitnessista says:

      YES. i have a new nose frida and haven’t busted it out yet. guess what’s happening tonight? friday night party haha
      we have a sleepsack, but she outgrew it. i’ll get a new one and see how it goes! thank you

  3. Hi Gina! Love your blog and truly appreciate these updates 🙂 when you say your family is complete, do you mean not having anymore kids? Thank you for all the hard work you put into the blog xo

  4. Oh! I remember when my little one had acid reflux, it was awful, especially having to hold her upright for 20 minutes after feeding when you just want to go back to sleep. hang in there!

  5. Have you tried a probiotic with P? It’s the only thing that helped my son. I bought infant probiotic at Whole Foods in the fridge section. Total game changer. Started off with 1/8 tsp then up to 1/4 tsp daily.

  6. They are so precious together 🙂 my guys reflux was due to dairy and soy allergies. I hope you find what works for your little one. If you get over to the Tucson area the new outlets in Marana are amazing!

  7. My little guy had horrible reflux – like large amounts of spit up almost every time he ate. It was horrible. Nothing we did helped. He took Zantac for months. We got him tested for pyloric stenosis as well but that was not the cause. We had him tested for a dairy allergy and it was negative. Looking back I should have been better about cutting out dairy anyway just to see if it helped. The only thing that helped was time. The spit up started to slow down around 4.5 months and by 6-7 months it was mostly gone. Good luck girl, I know its not fun.

    • Fitnessista says:

      was in he pain when he was spitting up? the laundry doesn’t bother me, but she screams and writhes in pain. it’s horrible :/ how did you test him for a dairy allergy? they don’t me they don’t run allergy tests for a year but suspect it’s dairy + possibly soy, eggs and corn

      • I wouldn’t say he was in pain when it was happening but he was definitely a fussy, high maintenance baby. The pediatrician tested a poopy diaper to test for dairy allergy. We just took one right up to them after we changed him. They tested it on the spot and it was negative. To our knowledge he has no allergies. I will say once he started drinking whole milk regularly (around 14 months) he started getting ear infections. I had heard from a mom that if that happened to try switching up his milk to another source. We went with Coconut milk and he has not had an ear infection since (its been about 10 months). So maybe he was allergic to dairy all along? Who knows, it’s so hard to tell with the little babies. Feel free to e-mail me with questions!

  8. Reflux is terrible while you are going through it, but it does get better. My little guys reflux was caused/made much worse by egg and dairy allergies. Tried so many meds before we found a combo that worked for him. And in the end I was dairy and egg free for the entire time I was breastfeeding.

  9. Clearly you are doing the important things right, she looks like the happiest girl. And healthy too, considering her reflux. She is just precious!

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