5/17/08

Baby-mad


Yup, I've officially gone over the edge. For the past few days, I've been unable to think about anything but QiuQiu in her orphanage. I feel like if I think hard enough, I'll actually be able to see her... rolling around in her crib, playing with her feet, smiling at a caretaker.
Yesterday, in a moment of extreme weakness, I spent 45 minutes looking through the photos of her orphanage that other parents have taken and posted in the files on our SWI group. The thing is, I have already looked at each and every one of these photos, several times over. But somehow I was convinced that if I looked one more time - looked really hard - I'd be able to see her in one of the photos.
Of course, that's ridiculous. I recognize that I'm not thinking clearly. So instead I decided to channel all my hormonal energy into more useful venues. I started searching the cleft group, and the blogs of parents who have brought home cleft-affected children, to see what I was missing. For one thing, I didn't have a clear idea of how one feeds a cleft baby. I mean, I had plenty of examples, but it seemed as if, in each journal that I read, each child had a different feeding implement that worked, and wanted nothing to do with the rest. A certain type of bottle, a small spoon, a sippy cup with a wide nozzle, a feeding syringe.... So I asked around.

In a nutshell, the advice I got from many quarters was that it's a process of elimination: bring everything, and discard what she won't use. With that in mind, I began to research BPA-free brands of bottles and sippy-cups that might be suitable to a baby with a large cleft palate (BPA being the "bad" ingredient that leaches out of most plastics and is toxic to children. Oh, and adults too). I discovered that I could find BPA-free sippy cups, with the kind of wide, soft nozzle that cleft kids often need, at W@alm@rt, of all places! I never shop at that particular Big Box, but this seemed like an occasion for a special trip. Meantime, I had received a few other tips from been-there-done-that moms, among which were that cleft babies in particular (and orphanage children in general, tend to be very small for their age, and that I should even have some 6-9 mos sized items for China, just in case. I knew that she was likely to be small, but I had only gone as small as 9-12 month sizes. I also learned that cleft babies are very messy eaters, and that I would need up to 8 bibs per day, and that girlie socks for toddlers tend to fall off constantly, and I was better off with mini athletic socks.
So off I went to Wally World, and back I came with some practical loot: Nuby sippy cups (two different types), tiny athletic socks, and a small-sized cotton onesy. The one thing I did not come back with is bibs, since I was told to find the most absorbent bibs possible, and the ones at Wally World felt thin and not very absorbent. So...I am on a mission for bibs, good, hefty, cotton, super-absorbent bibs.
And as a bonus, I'm starting to feel like a real mom (not just a mom making a pretty nursery). As long as I can find practical ways to channel my hormonal energy for the next few months, I think I'll be OK!
Oh, and outdoors today it feels like full-on summer for the first time this year! I will be over the heat very quickly, I know, and I will miss the cooler temps of spring, but right now it feels great, and I'm soaking it up!

17 comments:

Vivian M said...

The best bibs I ever used were from Babies R Us or a similar baby store. They were cotton towel like material, and had a t shirt like neck that stretches right over the baby's head (but makes it hard for the baby to pull off). All the velcro ones Kerri was able to pull off, so this model was a dream come true and completely machine washable. And if you are crafty with a sewing machine, you can probably make one yourself from a new dish or hand towel!

TBG Happenings said...

LOL I looked at every picture from Sophie's SWI at least twice thinking for sure I would see her.....

I am sure you will be able to find some bibs on etsy:)

Qiuqiu's parents said...

HAH! Crafty with a sewing machine? HAH... HAHAHA!

Oh, and Maryellen...HUSH!! We're not gonna mention the ones from Etsy. There were only a couple, and then I stopped, because I can't possibly in this lifetime afford an 8-bib-per-day habit at Etsy prices!

kerri said...

You enjoy every moment Mom, I am so happy for you. ;)
I am agreeing with Maryellen, they have some pretty sweet bibs on, yes, I'm going to say that words,LOL, Etsy...

Liz & Ava said...

Just found your blog from anothers.
Congratulations on the referral of your daughter Flynn...she is gorgeous.
My daughter from China also had a very large cleft lip/palate...very similar to Flynn's except the other side. Stop by my blog to see the before and after pics...it's amazing what the surgeons can do! Ava had her lip surgery July 4th/07 if you want to check out the archives.

Juliette said...

Look at you gorgeous in your pretty summery dress and shoes!
You're going to be such a hot Momma.
We got a nice warm day today but after the T-storm it cooled down a lot.

Yoli said...

I saw parents feeding the cleft babies while we were traveling and they seem to put the spoon in and press down. Also, they might give you a bottle with her that she might prefer so that will be good but do buy some for yourself.

Just in case you don't have it, here is a link to cleft bottles:

http://store.enfamil.com/bottles_and_nursers.html

Tish said...

i'm so glad you are feeling like a mom!!! if you can't find any good bibs, maybe you could use cloth diapers in some creative-Maia way. we didn't buy any bottles before M came home and instead bought them in taiwan so we could get the same kind he was already using. not knowing flynn's true size, you may consider getting a few of those "gown" things...that have the drawstring at the bottom.

Janice said...

Dear QuiQui Parents, a friend of mine told me about your blog which has touched her so. She was in your shoes twice with two successful adoptions from China. I invented a new type of baby bib for children who are learning to feed themselves (once they are sitting in the highchair) which has a unique split in the design to go around the safety bar and continue down the lap and thighs. It's called the Hi-Chair Bib (www.PoiWear.com) I would love to gift you with one if you get in touch with me! We continue to follow your story and wish the best for you and your family.

fourlittlehawks said...

I loved the towel-like bibs too, you can even find them at the grocery store in the baby aisle, they are really inexpensive.

I just wanted to say that preparing for sticky gooey messes does indeed BEGIN your journey to becoming a "Real Mom". However, you are still lacking the final initiation - the disgusting, sticky, gooey, enormous mess that you WEREN'T prepared for.

I prepare you for this so that while you are on hands and knees, dirty and panicked and slightly sick, you will also feel an odd peace and sense of satisfaction, knowing that your membership card will arrive shortly!

Love,
Jen

Maryam in Marrakesh said...

Oh wow, so exciting! I used to volunteer here with Operation Smile and saw quite a few babies through surgery. It is just incredible.

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

Oh.. my friend son has just had his palate repaired... oh he is messy, messy, messy... wears more on his clothes... but next week he has his final check up and chats away... he is a gorgeous little boy... I will have to send you their site... I don't think I have sent it... take care

Cindy said...

We have a 7 yr old cleft, home six years. We LOVE these bibs:
www.littledrools.com
I know your little QuiQui will enjoy them too, and looks so precious in them! Enjoy the journey!

kris said...

It's good to see your behaving completely normally- new mom brain, right? It must be so hard waiting to go and get her.

Carrie&Aaron said...

hey get all the learning in now-I feel like I have not had time to do any reading since we have been home!

Duchess of Lanier said...

Even shopping for practical things is wonderful! Who knew bibs and sippy cups could be so absolutely positively endorphin enducing?! Oh, and LOVE the shoes!
Trena
Lucky XZ mom

info said...

Bibs or no bibs... she'll look good in anything she eats :-)