Friday, August 31, 2007

SNAFU is just our status quo

What's been going on Chez Fostermoms, you ask? Everything and nothing.

First, the Niblet situation:
Niblet's not going anywhere any time soon. The last time we picked her up, fostermama asked Niblet's mom about the whole moving-out-of-state thing. Her mom said that her dad just got approved for Section 8 and there's a rule that you can't transfer your Section 8 out of state until you've been living in your current state for one year. So he can't move for one year. So we have Niblet for at least one more year. As we know, a lot can happen in a year, so whatever. We're just enjoying her in the moment. We've actually skipped a week here and there because there's been a lot of other stuff going on with us and it's pretty all-encompassing to have her around. We don't really get anything else done. Hopefully, though, we'll take her for an afternoon/evening over the long weekend.

Niblet herself is still CUTE. She's enormous, in my eyes. Still only about 26 pounds soaking wet, size 3 diapers fit her very well, but she's tall and mature-looking. She's slowing communicating more, but she still doesn't initiate words. She'll copy back words and she uses ASL signs with us that we've taught her, and she babbles and is a huge fan of NO!, but no real "talking" as I would define it. She's behind in that regard, but I suspect she'll eventually catch up. And she UNDERSTANDS everything, no doubt about that.

In SqueakLand: Squeak is now 7 months old, sitting like an uber-pro, and thinking about becoming mobile. He launches himself at the world and is really good and getting stuff that we think are out of his reach. Silly moms!
We found out recently that he has many food allergies, as well as allergies to our cats. This has created a lot of problems to be solved in our lives. Our cats are our "first children". We're "those crazy cat people", truly. We're devoted to our fuzzies. But between them and our kid, well, there's no contest. They're going to live with a family member, for which we're eternally grateful. The idea of having them go to a stranger and possibly never seeing them again was killing me.

Otherwise, we're learning to live with a baby who lives to put everything in his mouth and who needs, for the safety of his life, to be kept away from anything with food on it. (Okay, not all food, just anything that might have any possible traces of: milk, egg, peanut, other nuts, wheat and soy - see that's not everything, right?) It's complicated, especially since most of our friends have toddler (which, by definition, are constantly sticky with food).

Because we're breastfeeding him, we've cut all of these things out of our diet and are on a crazy elimination diet so we can test everything else slowly and make sure he doesn't react to anything else. You can only test for a few things in an infant blood test, because you can only take a small amount of blood. Next time we'll test for more, but for now we just have to test them the old-fashioned way - by mouth.

It's hard to even know how I feel about this, because it's just become a part of my life so quickly, so easily it seems. We carry around an Ep1-pen wherever we go with him. We wipe his hands (and anywhere else he can reach with his mouth) whenever we've been out in the world, just in case he got something on him. We're still in the hypervigilant phase. I know we'll always be like that, unless and until he grows out of the allergies, but I think it will eventually be subconscious instead of the first thing on my mind.

And, in case you thought it had just gone away of it's own accord, we're STILL waiting to hear the result of our adminstrative appeal for the stupid indicated abuse report. We sent in our lawyer-written letter about 45 days ago and they have 90 days to give the decision. We don't expect an answer until the 90th day.

That's how it is here. Any other questions?


Innocent Observer said...

My oldest had a ton of food allergies as a baby. He was reacting since birth from breastmilk. It was such a nightmare. They wouldn't skin test him because he was too young...then he has an anaphalatic reaction and they changed their minds. Skin testing made all the difference for us. His list was similar to yours, but he could eat shellfish and soy, but not tomato, so shrimp was a staple for him, as were his wheat free waffles from Trader Joe's and tofu scrambler, which I don't know if they even make anymore. Having a baby with allergies can be so hard, but once you have a safe list things get much easier.

My son has since outgrown all his allergies, save for the tree nuts. Good luck!

Tricia said...

Good to see your still out there! Allergies? Oy!

qUeEn oF tHe cAstLe said...

I have been looking into adoptive nursing as well but I don't know of anyone who is /has.
Just some questions when you get a chance...
*What are you using?
*Did/do you take supplements?
*Is it as easy as some say?
*Does it feel natural?
I am going to buy everything and do all the research NOW so when a baby is placed with us I'm ready. Let me know. Thanks~

Beth said...

Seriously, would you write a post about adoptive nursing? I know you're doing it, it's working, and Squeak is growing. But until recently I barely even knew it was considered possible. I would love to know more.

Clare said...

Al has the allergies too! He gets them from Gaye - we have been doing the epi-pen no nuts etc etc etc for years now with her - but just to add to it all his allergies are different to hers. It is a challenge with an 8.5 month old - mainly because as you say the stuff on the rest of the world!