Iron and Oil

15 10 2009

Azita had her 9-month well baby visit on Monday. I went in to this appointment fully expecting the doctor to say she’s growing really well and oh look, she’s crawling and cruising and doing all sorts of other things a little ahead of schedule. Great!

Well, things didn’t turn out so great. I mean, true, Azita is hitting all her milestones ahead of schedule. But, I’ll admit that it took me by surprise when I found out that Azita had gained just under a pound total in the past three months and has suddenly dropped from the 50th percentile in weight to the 10-25th percentile in weight within such a short time. Honestly, I’m still reeling a little from all of this. What did I do wrong?

I know Azita has been a bit finicky lately. She usually refuses food and sometimes refuses a bottle. I just didn’t know she wasn’t gaining weight. But now that I think about it, it should have struck me as a little weird that the newest member of her daycare — a 4 month old — is bigger than her.  And that’s where the guilt is really coming from.  How could I not notice this?

In the end it’s not really that big of a deal. I’m adding some formula powder and a little bit of oil to all of Azita’s food, and I’m taking the 45 minutes it takes for every meal to make sure she actually eats something. Really, it does take that long. She is a master of elusion, this one. So, I know she will be ok, and I’ll pay a little more attention to her growth from now on.

But then last night I come home to a message from her doctor. It turns out Azita’s CBC on Monday wasn’t normal either. My baby is anemic. Seriously. What happened to the doctor’s appointments where she got her vaccines and the doctor checked off all the good boxes? I know that anemia can be serious, but I also know that it isn’t really a huge deal if you treat it. After all, I was also anemic as a baby, and I grew up to be perfectly healthy.

It’s just that now I have to spend my days trying to get my baby girl to ingest iron and oil. Not exactly what I thought I’d be doing at this stage of her life. Boo hoo. Woe is me.

But enough whining already.  She’ll be all right, and it’s worth it. I mean, I get to come home to this every day:





2 responses

15 10 2009
Michelle Garrison Hough

Hi Zahra,
I know you haven’t met me personally (maybe next time you guys are up in NYC we can meet). However, I just want to give you encouragement as another mom of little ones. My son’s test at his 9 month visit came back borderline anemic… we had no idea! So for a while we gave him the dropper vitamins we were instructed to give. He is 15 months and seems to be doing fine now. Also, babies can fluctuate a lot in their weight. It is so hard to get them to eat! You are right about the 45 minutes. I spend so much time thinking about what they will eat, and then attempting to get it into their mouths. It is a struggle for all of us… and eventually they will be complaining that our cooking is making them fat! So we just have to take the good with the bad right now.

15 10 2009

Michelle, Thanks for the words of encouragement. In the scheme of things this really isn’t that bad. I know she’ll be fine. But, it really does feel like a struggle sometimes. It’s nice to know that other mothers struggle also. And I just keep reminding myself that it is all worth it.

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