I've always had a contentious relationship with dairy. It went from mildly irritating to gastrically tumultuous, so much so that I decided to end things and become a vegan, much to my intestines' delight. It wasn't until I got pregnant with my daughter that I was blissfully reunited with frozen yogurt and cheese.
So when my oldest came out as a fussy, sleep-fighting, oddly-pooping baby, it wasn't a far stretch for me to kick dairy to the curb for the sake of my own sanity and her rumbly little tummy. But then it was wheat, and then soy, and then the rest of the "big 8" until I finally decided to do a total elimination diet that lasted until her first birthday.
Now Margot is decidedly unfussy (for the most part), sleeps fairly well, and when she does poop it seems fine, but she's taken to puking every night around 8pm.
So after obsessing about it for the past few days, I shouldn't have been surprised when my pediatrician suggested I eliminate dairy.
"And if that doesn't work, try wheat," she added.
I hung up the phone and cried, not necessarily because I'm in love with ice cream. Or that I'll really miss bread. I've gone without cheese and I've savored the taste of rice bread. But mostly, I'm already a tad bit overwhelmed. A happy but puking baby that will require me to read food labels again, prepare different foods, and make adjustments to my life that is being held together by a very thin thread has just sent me right over the edge.
And I need to be able to drink a beer and eat an entire chocolate cake. I have three kids and a traveling husband for God sakes. Shots of organic white grape juice just will not cut it.
On the day I celebrated my release from the prison that was the elimination diet with an entire box of donuts, I vowed never to do it again. Fortunately with Drew, I figured out that most of Quinlan's reflux issues were caused by my oversupply and overactive letdown, both of which I resolved with him and had little issue with during our breastfeeding relationship.
But I'm learning that every pregnancy, every birth experience, and every child is truly different.
And apparently none of them are ever really easy.