Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Baby Maximus

Maximus is such a nice boy. He is easy to entertain, fun to be around, completely cute and quiet as a mouse, unless you lift him up too fast. Then his high pitched squeal might shatter glass!!

He eats what I make for him. He goes to sleep when I lay him down. He gives amazing hugs.

There is really only one area where we struggle to care for him. Drinking.

Max cannot drink out of anything but a spoon. He tips his head back and lets the liquid run down his throat. Can you imagine me spoon feeding him apple juice on an airplane? Not fun.

He has no concept of sucking, so he cannot figure out a bottle or any sippy cup that I have tried. He has no muscle tone in his face and minimal tongue control, so when he tries drinking out of a cup, the liquid runs out the corners of his mouth.

I use a lot of liquid in his pureed food to compensate for what he isn't drinking, but it is not enough. He continues to struggle with constipation as a result.

I'm redoubling my efforts to get him drinking independently. Today we started working on a bottle again. He wasn't too excited about the milk, or maybe he just didn't understand what I wanted him to do, so he kept refusing. I mixed some chocolate syrup into the milk to see if I could get him excited about drinking. He loved the chocolate milk, but still didn't want to work at all to get it out of the bottle.

I ended up cutting a tiny hole in the nipple so that he could have some success. I squeezed his floppy, thin cheeks together to try to help him get a seal around the nipple. I gave him lots of chin support. Uggh. Hard. So hard. We clapped and cheered for him when he finally finished the two ounce bottle!! Half hour later.

I don't care if he is eight. Don't give me a hard time for introducing him to a bottle. He never got to be snuggled and fed by a mommy like a proper baby. He missed out on babyhood altogether and I won't deny him.

Incidentally, today I received a baby picture of Max. He's not really a baby, but it's still precious for me to have so many photos of him from the last few years before we met. Oh, and it's authentic Ukrainian orphanage style to dress boys in pink. No big deal.

Check out the chocolate covered little guy!


Kat said...

He is so cute! I feel your pain with the liquids :/ I used to take care of a kid with a similar problem. We gave him fluids from sippy cups with the plastic stopper pulled out, so when you tipped the cup up the water just ran out. We'd hold a rag under his chin and he'd open his mouth and tilt his head back. Pour in a little fluid, let him swallow, repeat. I sometimes did the same thing using a really large syringe instead of a sippy cup as well. Easier to contain that a spoon. I hope maybe that helps!

KateK said...

Have you tried a Haberman Feeder? It's a bottle with a special nipple valve, that releases liquid with only the teensiest, tiniest bit of pressure -- it was designed for cleft palate babies, who because of their cleft palates are unable to generate much suction:

You can buy a Haberman feeder for around $12 at any pharmacy.

Your boy is a cutie -- I'm praying he learns to drink soon!!

Jill said...

I think trying a bottle is a great idea. No condemnation here. :-) It's great for attachment too. I don't mean to give advice to a veteran, but thought I'd throw it out just in case when he's ready...Talk Tools has a bear cup (like you get honey in) w/ food grade tubing to use a straw. The idea is you can squeeze the cup and liquid comes out the top of the straw, so "hopefully" a child eventually learns to suck. But maybe he won't be able to move the fluid back to swallow it. Just a thought. :-) I know I can definitely tell when my boys don't get enough fluid - constipation always. :(

Love the pink! :-) Authentic for sure! When Elijah came out one day in a pink lace trimmed collar, that just about put me over though. LOL

Sarah said...

I can't believe how good he looks! Amazing!!!

I saw a thumbnail of the first picture and was like, "nooo why on earth did you shave Ruby's hair???" LOL He kinda looks like her there!

He'll get there with the drinking... and soon discover the fun of being a "baby". :)

Skype date soon?? I miss you all!