Saturday, July 18, 2009

eating update

Thanks for your encouragement about the switching to formula thing. I've done straight formula since Thursday afternoon/evening, and the difference is night and day. Night and Day. It is amazing. Jonah is eating peacefully and quickly. He'll take three ounces no problem in about 15 to 20 minutes, and most of the time he wants to eat four to six ounces. He's never wanted to take more than three. So I guess I'm making the switch... as much as it breaks my heart.

And yes, I could go no dairy, and maybe it would make a difference, but here's one thing I know about me: I can't go no dairy. As much as I would love to be that selfless, I know my own limits. A while back I tried no milk out of the jug, no cheese, and no sweets, and it did no good. So I know it would have to be SERIOUSLY NO DAIRY, and even then I don't know if it would help. (Question: What foods contain dairy? Answer: Every good food on the face of the planet.) And I barely have the time or energy to figure out what I'm going to eat as it is, so major food restrictions would definitely send me over the edge.


Don't judge me. I can only do so much.

I am continuing to pump, though, until I speak with his doctor and a lactation consultant. I do want to talk to them about the benefits/risks of mixing in small amounts of breast milk.

I called his nutritionist to get the recipe for the increased calorie per ounce formula now that we're taking away the breast milk. The recipe is one cup of formula to 20 ounces of water. That makes about 24 ounces mixed. That will maybe get us through one day. Guess how many cups of formula are in a can? TWO. That means that with his increased caloric needs, one can of formula is only going to last us two days. That means we'll spend about $100 a week on formula. Holy Cow. And they call breast milk liquid gold. So… I went on Similac and signed up for coupons, applied for the Target Visa (which we’ll pay off every month) so we’ll get coupons and discounts there, checked on eBay where it seems I’ll be able to get it for about $15 a can instead of $25 (if I buy in bulk), and will talk to the doctor about writing a prescription for it (although I have no idea if Jonah’s insurance would cover it or not.) So if you have/find Similac coupons you aren’t going to use and wouldn’t mind sending them our way, that would be so great. And if you know any other way to get it cheaper, please let me know. You guys have some great tricks. But it boils down to this… if Jonah is eating better, more peacefully, and the formula is decreasing his pain, then Amen. Hallelujah. Praise Jehovah. AND, it’s worth every penny.

As far as the gdiapers, someone sent me some inserts that I’ve used. But when I looked online for them, it’s significantly less expensive to buy cheap store-brand diapers and cut the elastic out than reorder the gdiaper inserts. So, cut I will.

Jonah’s trying to get on a schedule – waking up around 7, eating at 7:30, taking a short morning nap, starting dressing change between 11 and 12, eating afterwards, and then sleeping from 1:30 or 2 until 4 or 5. I want to be able to move his bedtime up, but so far he refuses to go to sleep before 11, and last night it was midnight. I’m happy it’s a semi-schedule though, and things seem significantly easier than just a few days ago. I’m feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. (And I’m so afraid that putting all of this is writing is going to totally jinx everything.)

Better run. Dressing change calls.

110 comments:

Anonymous said...

God is good. Baby steps my dear. Sleep, wonderful beautiful sleep. Life is better when seen through rested eyes.
love and prayers always
2shoes

Mindy said...

FYI - I don't think I could ever go No Dairy either!

Lindsey and Chris said...

getting ready to deliver our second...I'm sure similac will be sending coupons our way. Planning to breastfeed again this go around so we probably won't be needing them. I will send them your way if I run across them.

Amy Missey said...

Patrice-I follow your blog daily. Glad to hear the formula seems to be helping. I have some Similac coupons that I would be happy to send your way now that my kiddos are off formula (I have triplets, and I know how crazy expensive it can get). I will check your blog to see if there is an address to send them to. Best to all of you.

Angela said...

You're right--dairy is in everything. Since he's doing so well on the formula, I say go for it.

I may have missed this somewhere in another post, but is there some reason he has to have Similac? When I weaned both of my sons at about nine months each, after all our free samples were gone, I just bought Parents Choice formula from Walmart, and it was TONS cheaper. Just a suggestion.

Jessica K. said...

oh man no pics... why are you doing that to me?? ;)

i couldnt go without dairy either, so i think this is the best way! and it seems jonah thinks the same!!
i will keep him in prayers with his eating. i hope it keeps up this way.

i wish formula was cheaper. i dont live in the states and dont have coupons but if i happen to see something about it i will let you know!!

have a blessed weekend!

Lyn said...

Try looking into WIC. Call your local health department and ask if they have WIC, which would give you ALL of his formula for FREE. The give formula based on MEDICAL NEED even if your income is over their limits. Please give it a try. It could save you thousands of dollars.

truelifeofjess said...

I am sure you have doen some of this but go you can google simlac coupons and there are all kinds of websites that have coupons. Also, is he not able to eat cheaper brand formula. Might Help money wise.

Sara said...

There are some diaper inserts (at Food Lion I think) that are to help with prevent leaks with disposible diapers overnight. The kind of look like a maxi pad with no sticky on them.Do you think they will work?

Christina said...

Hello there! I follow your blog regularily. I wanted to let you know that if you think your son is dairy intolerant then formula may not help this either. All formula is milk based, including soy. There is actually only one formula that isnt and its only given by Rx. Im not sure what its called though. I totally understand about dairy free being hard. I did it for 4mos and I REALLY missed my cheese! I can eat whatever I want now as baby has outgrown his sensitivities thankfully :)

As for mixing your milk with the formula Im pretty sure you can do this, but to what ratio Im not sure. Im happy to hear that the formula is helping. A happy baby is a happy mom!

I look forward to reading more updates. I dont know you, or your family but I must admit Im totally smitten with your son. Theres just something special about him...but you already knew that ;)

Lindsay said...

Hi Patrice!
My name is Lindsay, and I've been following your story on here since Jonah was born. My daughter is 10 months old now, and was born with a severe cleft lip and palate. I pumped for her for the first three months. But with her care being so exhausting as it was, and constant travelling back and forth to and from Rochester, NY..... it got to the point where I had to do what was best for both of us, and put her on formula. It was the best decision I ever made, though I had so much guilt about it at first, but I was finally able to enjoy my baby and not feel like a zombie all the time.
Also, your pediatrition can write you a prescription for high calorie formula. Insurance may cover it under special medical supplies, and most states medicaid programs have no income limit coverage for kids with any sort of disability. This can be used to back up the regular insurance so you have much less out of pocket expenses.
Most states also have a program called the "Physically Handicapped Children's Program" which can be used to purchase things like formula, bottles, dressings, etc.... that insurance won't cover. If you have any questions, or if I can help at all, please email me and I'll send you my phone number privately and we can talk.
God bless...
Lindsay
linz_is_happy@yahoo.com

Jamie Fenley said...

Patrice,
I recently had a son with a heart defect. We live in PA, and don't qualify for need based SSI either. We do qualify for state medicaid though because technically our son has a disability because he was born with a defect. This covers anything our insurance doesn't, including copays and formula (we have to use Neocate). In fact, 8 cans were just delivered to our house this week!
I don't know if anything is available like that in NC, but it's just a thought. And yes, dairy is in everything it's absolutely insane!!

Anonymous said...

Hello,

I use cloth diapers as well and if what you are experiencing is leakage with yours, try this :

get some cheap microfiber dusting cloths and use them as inserts. You can cut them down a bit or if you find small ones just fold them. They work GREAT!

Shari said...

Patrice: you have given Jonah over four months of good nutrition with the breast milk. I am proud of you. Alimentum is very expensive. I will do what I can to see if I can drum up either formula or coupons for you. You are such a good Momma! I continue to pray for Jonah daily. I am so glad he's eating better.

Penny said...

I, too, was going to suggest WIC or Medicaid. WIC is usually through your Health Dept.
Also, try not to feel bad about giving him formula. I wasn't able to breastfeed mine, and didn't have a 10th as much going on as you do, and my kids were healthy and smart. You do have too much on your plate to try to limit your diet, research ingredients in everything you eat, and continue pumping. You've done a great job keeping it up this long. =) God bless.

Anonymous said...

You also could buy Similac coupons on ebay. I know it may seem ridiculous, but you can save at least $40 a month by doing it.
http://shop.ebay.com/?_from=R40&_trksid=m38&_nkw=similac+coupons&_sacat=See-All-Categories

CinderellaMommy said...

Hi, Patrice.
Glad to hear that things are going well with feeding - although stopping the BF is tough, I remember the guilt and worry. Your Mommyheart knows what's best for Jonah, though, so trust it and our Father to lead you. Regarding the disposable inserts, is it to prevent the aquaphor from getting on the cloth diapers? If so, have you considered cutting your own liners (or having one of us do it for you?) out of fleece? It is what many are made out of commercially, but is SO EASY to do at home. Because fleece doesn't fray, you can cut it and although it may not be perfectly straight and pretty, it totally does the job. Also, for Jonah, since it does not need to be stitched in any way, it hopefully wouldn't irritate his skin. If you think it would work for you (it's what we used to keep diaper creams off the actual cloth diaper and it made the wash SO MUCH EASIER!), it would be lots cheaper and potentially less irritating for him. We'll keep you guys held up in prayer. Have a great weekend!

lifelaughsandlove said...

Yay! I'm so glad it helped you out. It was one of the most difficult, guilt-laden decisions I had to make for Anthony, but when you see your baby change so drastically because of the formula you just know you made the right decision. Now, if it weren't for that ridiculous price tag. We had to completely redo our budget just to figure out how in the word we were going to afford that stinking stuff, but it is worth every penny.

~Amy

Leigh-Emma Lion said...

Check i-medica.com. My son was on Alimentum or the 1st year due to a milk allergy as well and we found good deals there from time to time. I too had a hard time accepting that formula could be better for him than breastmilk, but he was a much happier and healthier baby after we made the switch. Good luck!

Lauren said...

I just want to encourage you about making the switch to formula. My girls were preemies and for so long I pumped so they could have breastmilk before they were able to breastfeed. Life got crazy and I had to give up on breastfeeding altogether, but I was still able to pump until just a couple of weeks ago. They are 10 months old. With that said, I fought with myself so hard and felt so shamed that I was giving up and supplementing my milk with formula. I came to the conclusion though. God doesn't care how your baby eats, just that he/she is eating. If it stresses you out less to formula feed and it's better for Jonah, then dive in head first. The main reason I continued pumping was due to financial reasons. We would've been spending close to about $500-600 a month in formula. You're doing great...don't feel bad whatsoever because breastfeeding didn't work out.

Mary said...

check Craigslist for your area for coupons, just type in "similac" in the search field. People are always giving them away or wanting to trade for some other brand, at least around here! People even sell/give away extra cans they won't use.

teacheroftwos said...

Patrice I have some Similac Coupons and also two sample cans of formula. One is Similac Advance and one is Similac Isomil Advance. Could you use either of the sample cans? Also question about the coupons, they have my name on them can you still use them. Please let me know ASAP and I will mail out whatever you can use. PS Do you quailfy for WIC?

amaranthris said...

If you order from similac.com, you can use the SAVE20 code to save 20%. I found it on retailmenot.com, and it has a 100% success rate. I don't know when it expires.

Anonymous said...

You might also want to ask whatever therapists you have from EI (I think he's enrolled in EI?). With our EI program, a lot of parents donate their extra formula when they switch types/wean/etc. And they might have connections to help you get formula, or more ideas on programs local to you.

Shop around, too! Walmart might be cheaper than Target, one grocery store cheaper than another.

Brittany said...

Yeah Jonah! Way to go baby! Patrice- please don't feel guilty at all! You are doing whats best for Jonah and he knows that. You are an awesome mom! Jonah loves you!

Brittany said...

P.S.- have you checked out swagbucks? I am not familiar with it but a couple of friends use it and say they love it. It could help with formula costs!

The Howard's said...

Have you checked out the store brands of formula? My son, who had special eating needs, used the Parent's Choice...aka... Walmart Brand formula. I had a pharmacist help me decide which one of the many was the exact match to the expensive Enfamil that the hospital recommended.

Meghan said...

I always got my formula from BJ's Wholesale Club (like Sam's Club or Costco, if you don't have a BJ's). It was 27 dollars for a Much larger can (I think, 2.1 pounds,but I can't remember. I just know it was a LOT bigger.) And, then I used the 5 dollar off coupons that Similac sent me every month. So, 22 dollars, and 1 can lasted about 4 and half days...

Hope this helps!

Nikki said...

If someone dares judge you for doing what's best for you and your baby-man, send them my way and I'll beat them... verbally, of course. :)

You're doing amazing! We have a 3 month old (our 3rd here, 5th overall), so if we get any good coupons in the mail I'll send them your way.

Anonymous said...

Hello,

Try asking your doctor if he can talk to the representative that brings them samples of the formula you need. He may be able to get you a case or two of the formula for free. It is worth a try even if it is only one case it would save you at least a weeks worth.

Take care!

Kelsey said...

Yay! You sound so much more positive on this post than the previous and that makes me so happy for you and Jonah!

the-mommy-person said...

You're the best mom!

Lisa said...

If you have a Hy-Vee grocery store near your, the offer "baby bucks" coupons which give you cash off baby formula and stuff after you buy so much. I don't remember much about the program but when I had twins on specialty formula at 16 dollars per tiny can mixed to a higher calorie content, with one can lasting ONE day, I took what I could get! Also contact the social worker at the NICU at they can sometimes get you a free case of formula from the manufacturer.

Anonymous said...

Hi! We bought our formula at COSTCO (not sure if that's near you) and it was WAY cheaper than anywhere I have ever seen it... you might try there. Sam's IS NOT THE SAME. Only costco will do. Hope that helps!

Anonymous said...

IS he on regular Similac?
Best Wishes!

Lil' K said...

I just switched my little one to formula after breastfeeding for a while, and WHOA. This dude LOOOOVES his formula. What is up with that??

And, you can bet I will be sending coupons your way.

I love your blog, and even though I am a stranger, I love that sweet baby Jonah. Thanks again for your honesty.

Sara said...

Like other suggested, see about getting WIC. Apply to the insurance company to pay for even some of it. Even if they turn you down the first time, keep trying, which I know is a lot of work. I know a few families where another family member does all the ordering supplies, dealing with insurance companies,, etc...so the parents don't have to worry about those things.

I am not sure if there is a store brand of the formula he drinks...my kids drank the target brand lactose free and did just fine on it. One of them wouldn't even drink the brand name stuff!

Like other said, Ebay is good place, I have even heard of families contact the company of what ever supply they need and talking the company into giving them either coupons or in some cases, free things! I know the company that makes aquaphor does that. I don't know about any baby formula companies but its worth a try to call and ask.

I am glad he is eating better.

I couldn't give up dairy either! i love my ice cream:)

Brewster Family said...

Patrice, you are a wonderful mother. Don't worry about stopping the BF. You are doing EVERYTHING RIGHT! As previously mentioned, please check to see if WIC is available in your area. Check with your local health department. My granddaughter needed special formula that was very expensive and her insurance didn't cover the cost. Her doctor wrote a perscription and we were able to get about 12 cans a month for free through WIC. It didn't cover the entire month but it sure helped. Also, check some of the baby magazines. They often have Similac coupon inserts. We also found that Costco and Sam's Warehouse had the best prices when buying in bulk. Best of luck. Hang in there.

Sylithia said...

Here is my suggestion on the formula....contact Similac (Abbott) ...call them and explain the circumstances. They will probably at the very least send you coupons for free cans...give it a try! Here's the info.Just give us a call at 1-800-232-7677, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m

Stacy aka Fahiima said...

You are a great mother. Don't ever feel guilty about the choices that you have had to make. You are informed and have also spent a lot of time in prayer.
Just make sure you don't stop pumping abruptly if you decide to discontinue the breastmilk, that way you won't get mastitis.
I would look into mixing small amounts into his bottles anyway though,as I feel it still has the potential to help his immune system.

Anonymous said...

Hi Patrice
I've been following your blog for a long time, but this is my first time commenting. Your sons are beautiful and you are such an inspiration...some ideas re. formula...ask at your peditrician's office for any samples every time you go...they usually have plenty, the other thing you could do is also sign up Matt at similac to also get samples and coupons...hope this helps. Praying for your family daily!
Love from Indiana...Leanne

Ashley said...

I read your blog everyday and saw that you needed Similac coupons. I have six $5.00 off checks that I have no need to use as my daughter used Good Start. I get checks at least twice a month with coupons so if you would like them and you know a store that will take them with my name on them they are all yours. Just shoot me a email and I can send them out to you as I don't know where to send them. the email address is auntashley@wi.rr.com. THanks and God Bless.

Krystal said...

I live in Winston too and I used to buy formula at Food Lion. Every time I did they gave me a coupon for a free can of formula (can't remember the brand but it was not what I was buying.) So I would get the free can then wait till I had 4-5 cans and take them back and trade them for the brand I was using. I always had to pay the price difference but it was less than a dollar a can. A little bit of hassle but worth it!

If you send me an email w/ the information to get the Similac coupons I will sign up for them and then forward them to you. My e-mail is Cksbyrne@aol.com

Anne said...

Hi
I follow your blog but I never comment...I was just on craigslist. I'm not sure if you know about it but I just did a search for similac coupons and people actually post on their so might be worth checking in your area. I emailed someone in my area and gave them your link to contact you if you'd want them.

www.craigslist.com

Cindy said...

Hey...I have heard of people getting hooked up with the drug reps at the peds office and having them send free samples to people like you. Might be worth a shot and I know you are not afraid to ask!
Glad he is eating better!

katrynka said...

Anyone who would judge you should have to shadow you for 24 hours, and I bet they would shut up and go home!!

I have no clue of your income level, but WIC might be a resource for formula? And definitely try the MD prescribing, then you might even gt formula delivered to you monthly if the insurance is providing. In Maryland when insurance pays, the formula is delivered from the pharmacy via UPS!! Good luck.

Erica said...

SO GLAD to hear that the formula switch is making such a big difference. It might make the switch a little easier on you, since it is so clear that he does so much better on formula. Remember, NO GUILT!!! You have given Jonah the precious gift of your breast milk for such a long time! Be satisfied in that, and, when you make your decision, rejoice in the freedom of no pumping! I can remember the day I got rid of my breast pump- it was like cutting off a ball and chain. :) Anyway, so glad that you're seeing such an improvement!!!

P.S. Do you have Craig's List in your area? We buy Eli's formula (Nutramigen, $26 a can in stores) for cheap in bulk off of it.

Erica said...

Sorry, another thougth on the cheaper formula thing...

Our pediatrician gets samples of hypo-allergenic formulas (Alimentum and Nutramigen) all the time. She knows that we use it for Eli, so she saves all the samples for us. They're 8-oz. cans (as opposed to 16 oz like in the stores), but when you're getting 15 of them for FREE, it's so worth it! Maybe ask your GI and pedi to save samples for you?

amber said...

Hi girl! So glad he's eating well! Have you ever applied for WIC? If you qualify you get formula (not sure about Similac...) for free! That would at least cover some of the cost. Here's the link to see if you'd qualify--http://www.fns.usda.gov/wic/howtoapply/incomeguidelines.htm

Just a thought! I'll keep my eyes open for Similac coupons!

Amber

Precious 3 said...

You gotta do what you gotta do for your boy! If that means straight formula, then no one should judge. I had to do the no dairy thing with my first baby, and it was tough. I got away with only cutting out milk, and just cutting down on the cheese, but my sister had to even read every lable for whey. Whew! She stuck it out for 14 months, bless her heart. I only made it 4 months, before supplementing with formula, and my daughter decided she liked formula best. I guess it didn't hurt her tummy. But we had to go to nutramigen(sp?) that was soooo expensive. My mom is a lac consult, and it was wonderful to have her advice, or I would not have even made it the first 4months nursing.

The Fowlers said...

I totally understand your issues with giving up dairy. My son was unable to digest dairy (think projectile vomiting), so I decided to give it up. I ended up spending SO much time reading labels and restaurants/takeout food was out of the question since everything is cooked in butter. Things you wouldn't expect, like Nutri grain bars and Sara Lee bread have milk in them. While I lost the baby weight (and MORE!) while I nursed him (9 months) it was VERY difficult. I can't imagine dealing with that and taking care of Jonah's special needs. Don't let anyone make you feel guilty for not nursing.

Robin said...

Patrice,
I am SO happy to hear what a difference the formula made for Jonah. The first thought that came to mind was "don't throw the baby out with the bath water". I know, crazy thought.
I guess what I was thinking is WHATEVER makes Jonah happier and life easier is the right thing for your family. Does it really make sense to have Jonah suffer through every feeding just to make sure it's breast milk?
My daughter is 21 and there were NO facilities for breast-feeding moms in offices at that time. I had to stop before I went back to work when she was three months old. I felt so guilty, but she did fine and didn't have her first sniffle until she was 10 months old.
I hope every day gets a little easier for your family.
You are an awesome Mom and
Jonah is a blessed little boy.


Hugs,
Robin

Susana said...

I am currently pregnant with my fourth and have bottle fed all of them. I did try to breastfeed my first, but it just was not for me for so many different reasons. I so badly wanted it to be and I tried so hard, but just couldn't do it. It was too emotionally hard on me. I am a health nut and bottle feeding went against everything I believe, but you just never know.

I tried every formula on the market with my first who is now 9. None agreed with her. They would work for a while and then end up causing numerous problems. I ended up getting advice from a labor and delivery nurse in the NICU at my nearest hospital to try Nestle Good Start (with the purple label). She said it was made to break down and digest better and should comfort my daughter's tummy and ease all of the problems we'd been having for months. I tried it and it worked overnight, seriously!! I have used it with my others as well. I tried to deviate from it with my third and two weeks after we brought him home he began having problems just as my oldest had. So, I made the switch to Nestle (I stress the one with the purple label) and overnight he was a different baby!!

I tell you all of this in case Jonah has any problems you could give it a try. When you are desperate to make your baby happy so that you can be happy and rest I know how that feels!!

I hope you will take this well meant advice, it comes with lots of love and prayers too.

I hope your days get better and better and your nights rest longer and longer!! Health, prayers and so many well wishes to you, Jonah and Matt!!

Anonymous said...

Ask your GI doctor for samples. I am a PA and used to work in peds GI before having kids -- we always had a large stock of hypoallergenic formula to give to patients who were paying for it out of pocket. I am glad it is working for you -- it really is a miracle for some babies.

Bernt and Erin Eidsmoe said...

Please look into WIC - we get all of my daughter's formula free! It saves us so much money every month!!!

Libby said...

Can you use the free samples of Similac they give at the hospital (I still have mine), or do you need a special kind? I have gotten coupons, so I'll send any more I receive on! And the formula/milk only stage doesn't last forever! (Although I know there will be new challenges with new foods.)

I often think I could be vegetarian if I had to, but I could never give up cheese. I COMPLETELY understand. Our prayers and thoughts continue to be with your family!

Lisa said...

Just so you know...almost all formula companies will send you free samples if you ask for them(sometimes full size containers). If you email them and tell them what formula you're using (and why) and of course be sure to mention that any samples they could send would be incredibly helpful, you might be surprised at what you get. Often they send extra coupons too.

Anonymous said...

I've never commented on here before but read your blog often. I had to cut out dairy with both my babies and it was miserable!! People just don't realize that dairy is in absolutely everything. I became emaciated because I had to limit my diet so much so eventually I switched to formula with both. They are both smart, always way ahead of other kids their age (sorry, have to brag a little here but it's to make a point) and very healthy. Jonah's immune system has had a chance to mature. It's in the begining that they really need the antibodies, etc.
It's a tough decision but you're doing the right thing if it's making him (and you) happier. The guilt will fade. I hope you can find some relief with the cost.

Owen & Emily said...

Patrice, I've never commented before, but since you're having bfding issues, I couldn't resist. I am a mom of 2 little ones and have had MAJOR breastfeeding issues from the start...mostly that I don't make enough milk--but to encourage you to persue the small amounts of brstmlk beacuase every lactation consultant I've spoken with/ as well as pediatricians have all said that no matter how small the amount, the baby still reaps the benefits. Save the milk! If you can't use it, donate it to a milk bank and spread the gift God's given your body with babies in the NICU! Blessings. www.maurermasterpiece.blogspot.com

Katie said...

:) I <3 you. (Typing that totally made me feel like I'm 15, but I don't care. It's true.)

Oh, and a side note away from the whole dairy thing--Rory's reflux was not as bad with the formula. Since it was a bit thicker, she kept it down better.

vanettens said...

Do NOT worry about people judging you about possibly stopping breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is exhausting in itself what with making the milk, pumping the milk, storing the milk, etc, on top of everything else you have to do. You have made a valiant effort for a long time - look how much he's grown now!!:) I breastfed my younger son for a year because I thought it would be better for him because he had eczema and asthma and was later diagnosed with allergies. He would spit up huge amounts of spit up, I'm talking rivers. The doctor said not to worry about it as long as he was growing and it didn't seem to be bothering him like he was in pain(it only bothered me because I had to clean it up!) But now looking back I think that he was allergic to my breastmilk and what I was eating because he turned out to be allergic to milk and if he ever accidently takes a sip of my older son's milk now, he almost immediately vomits. So I wish I would have tried what you did with the formula because maybe he wouldn't have thrown up all the liquid gold. Keep up the great work and sorry for the novel!!

Anonymous said...

I know someone said this but I would look into WIC to see if you qualify.

Laura A said...

Hi Patrice-

Don't you feel bad for one second about switching to just formula. Jonah's eating and isn't hurting, and that's all that matters. And I'm with you too - going ND would be way too hard (and who has time to figure out EXACTLY what has dairy? SHEESH!)

I'll be on the lookout for Similac coupons, and will certainly send them your way!

So glad Jonah's eating better, and that he seems to feel better as well. Continuing to pray for him and you and Matt!

Love from TX,
Laura

boltefamily said...

i have a bunch of similac coupons i will send!

CastingCares said...

Hi Patrice,
You've done great breastfeeding Jonah, so don't feel guilty if you need to stop.

My husband is a minister at a new church, and our income couldn't afford the formula. We were able to qualify for WIC. It was difficult for me to accept the help in the beginning, but it was such a blessing.

I'm not sure if you ever read Matt Logelin's blog, but I now he was able to get lots of coupons, and he hardly paid for any formula the first year.

I'm so glad he is eating better and giving you a full night's rest.

Shannon

ANewKindOfPerfect said...

I have read your blog for a long time now and I don't know if I've ever commented! I just wanted to tell you that I got a Similac check in the mail today, I am sending it Monday in the mail to the PO Box listed on your site. :)

Angela said...

So happy to hear that your little man is eating better - Praise the Lord!

Bummer about the gDiapers. Guess it only makes sense to figure cost into the equation when the formula is so expensive. On the lookout for coupons for you =) I'm sure once you go the formula route you will enjoy the freedom from your pump and have more time to cut up more disposables...lol!

I could never give up dairy either. I'm already Vitamin D deficient so no need to make matter worse. But I agree every good food on the face of the planet does contain dairy. Well at least every good food on this planet that I like to eat does.

And never any judgment here. Enjoy your weekend!

queenmari said...

you are doing what is best for jonah and this is all it is about. you are a mommy doing the best thing you can for your sweet baby boy. breast milk or formula, your decision is about jonah and what will serve him.

the way i see it, it is a great thing that god gave a researcher the presence of mind to develop formula. a blessing it is.

i would love to be able to send you coupons and will begin with tomorrow's sunday paper--scouring it for similac formula coupons.

you might also check with some food banks to see if you can get formula there. i am a now retired(due to my husband's cancer and mom's altzhimers) social worker having worked as the director of a confidential shelter program, and i have sent many a shelter client to the food bank for formula (we didn't need the food from the foodbank and requested that our clients not take the food, but providing formula for all the babies in the shelter was expensive so the food bank was a huge help in that regard for us.) always a success in finding formula there.

you might also try wic.

and you could contact similac directly and explain your situation and jonah's needs. they might send you a supply.

(you've gotten the social worker in me in thinking mode:)

is the address on your blog the correct address to mail coupons to?

i must say that it is a joy to be able to do something for you, from so far away, even as simple as clipping coupons. thank you.

--blessings, mari

Jennifer said...

Sometimes if you are able to contact a Similac representative (through your ob or peds office) they will donate formula to different and special families. I have known them to donate 1 or (many) more cases of full size cans. Since you have this wonderful blog and since Jonah is such an awesome and special little boy I wouldn’t be surprised if they will donate to your family. Good luck!

Lesli said...

HI! I just want to drop a line and say it is possible to go without dairy. Not fun, but possible.

My 8 month old is dairy and soy intolerant, so I have learned a lot in the past year. I want to give you all the encouragment I can, but I also want to warn you. Some babies that are dairy and soy intolerant can have a honeymoon period where they do really well with a forumla, then they start reacting to in. It is going to be best for him if you make sure you milk supply is still there while you see how this does for him. Hugs! Feeding issues are soooooo tough to deal with!

chinamoon1420 said...

Patrice, please know I wasn't judging you by talking about cutting everything good out of your diet so you could still breastfeed. You have to do what is best for Jonah and what will make you the best mommy possible for him! That is what is most important. I just remember how enjoyable it was for me when I was breastfeeding and how hard it was for me to stop! Luckily my son became uninterested in so I didn't have to make him stop. I am so glad he weaned himself.
Anyway, I was just wanting to make sure you knew about taking all that out of your diet. But yes, you are right, as long as he is eating with no pain is what is important. I am so glad the formula is going so well! That is fantastic! Reminds me of something I read somewhere..might have been on this blog....God may not always give you what you ask for but He always gives you what you need. I drive myself crazy trying to work that one out in my head! Anyway, I am really really glad you have found some kind of solution for him. That is the most important thing. I would have done the same thing. At one point I had to try formula too...$50 a can! He wouldn't drink any of it! I have taken one or two bottles out of it. It is called progestimil. It is made by enfamil. If you can use it and aren't afraid to take a can that has been opened with only a bottle or two taken out of it, I would be more than happy to send it to you. If not I totally understand! I don't know that I could take something opened from a total stranger either!
So I am very very happy he is eating! And so much! That is absolutely glorious! And getting himself on a schedule! Wonderful. My husband and I put our son to bed at 10:30-11:00 (sometimes he doesn't fall asleep till 11:30) because sometimes he (my husband) does not get home until around 8 and that way he can spend some time with our son. Then my son gets up around 10:00A. Works good for me because I am NOT a morning person...sure wish I was though! If you'll notice all my comments are always really late/early depending on how you look at it! We are slowly working on getting him in bed at 10:00.

If I do run across coupons for similac or similac I will send it your way. If you would like to have the progetimil just send me an email or in your blog you can say chinamoon....yes I do....whatever!

So glad you are getting some rest! I remember being that tired! Now you can take a shower, eat and maybe get a nap all in the same day!

Can't wait to read the next blog! Give Jonah big kisses and love for me! And a hug to you and Matt!

Still praying everyday!

(oh, that diet was so difficult for me. I couldn't even take one bite of something I shouldn't have because it would make his tummy hurt. I lost lots of weight though! It did about kill me though! I missed cheese soooooo much and ice cream! )

oh, one more thing...have you tried applying for SSI for Jonah? My son has a life long medical issue too. Hemophilia A severe,I have probably mentioned it before and If you remember I am sorry for repeating myself but I know you read thousands of comments! Anyway lots of medical professionals told me to apply. We did but make too much money! (one income household, don't know how that is possible but I do know I am blessed that we do make it every month only by the Grace of God and I am so thankful for that.) Just thought I would mention it. Just call the social security office. Ok...I'm done! :)

Anonymous said...

Try calling your local WIC office. When my son was about a month old, he had to go on Nutramigen (and stayed on it until he was 18 months old). Even though we were over the income limit, he still qualified to get his formula through them because it was MEDICALLY necessary. Nutramigen costs about $25/can, so you can see how much you would save doing that. Truly a lifesaver, especially when you have a "medically fragile" child & have all the extra medical expenses on top of the formula.

Michelle said...

Happy mommy = Happy baby. No room for guilt in that equation. I'll keep an eye out for formula coupons. Other commentors have great ideas about contacting WIC and asking your pedi about store btands. :)

Our beautiful mess... said...

Patrice,
I don't blame you at all. I had my daughter on Feb 26th. I am a HUGE bfing advocate and aspiring IBCLC. I had troubles bfing my son but people told me that it was me and not having no milk. I have PCOS. This time around my daughter was doing great until we got home, lost too much weight (I have NO milk supply, MAYBE 15ml's each feeding) and was almost hospitalized. She would take breast and bottle so I breastfed her for 6 weeks before her bottles. Then she started projectile vomiting, and we figured out it was from milk in my diet. I struggled with the decision, but theres no way I could go milk free either. There is milk in SO many products that it would be so time consuming. O.k...sorry that was REALLY fragmented and all over the place. Basically, I totally support you. Just feel blessed at how long you did get to give him breastmilk. She was on the special formula for a couple weeks too, but we switched her to soy and she's been doing great! Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Patrice - I stopped bfeeding my daughter at 3 months and put her on formula because she screamed bloody murder all day and night. Reflux meds didn't work, and I was sleeping in 20 minute intervals. I also had a 16 month old, so waiting for a non-dairy diet to kick in just wasn't going to happen. And dairy is in EVERYTHING. Just read the labels...bread, oatmeal, etc. I put her on formula and she was a different baby in 12 hours. The change was remarkable. At 3 months old she had never smiled and fussed all the time. Suddenly she was a happy, cooing infant. I continued to pump too and after about 8 weeks, gradually mixed some breast milk in with her formula. She got up to taking half and half before I ran out of my freezer stash.

All that to say that you should not beat yourself up one little bit over this. You have nurtured and loved that sweet boy, and he is thriving because of it. Give your "girls" a break and rejoice that Jonah's tummy is feeling better.

Oh, and get your hubby to register at similac too with a different email address. They will send double coupons :)

Just Breathe said...

I was over at Consider It Pure Joy and saw your button. I know I need to read allot more of your posts to understand everything that is going on with Jonah. I just want to say that I am sorry that your lost your son Gabe. I will pray for you and your family.
Take care & God Bless.

Beav's Wife said...

What wonderful news!!!! So glad the eating is going better.

My youngest was on Alimentum and then Nutramigen during his first 7-8 mos. and we really got some great coupons off of Craigslist as well as on eBay. People would post them and sometimes only ask that you pick them up or send a self addressed stamped envelope. It helped a lot! That stuff is so expensive! Also, maybe you could contact Similac directly and explain your situation. I didn't do that b/c our son just had issues with constipation / digestion which are more common but they might be willing to help you out. :0)

Lorraine-bo said...

Praise God!

I couldn't quit dairy if I had to for the loss of ice cream alone!

So glad Jonah is eating/sleeping better!

Prayers!

momnananelson said...

http://www.nutritionnc.com/wic/benefits.htm

Patrice the above is a ling to w.i.c. in north carolina, they help with formula,milk, juice, baby food, eggs, infant ceral and more.
from this link is also forms needed to fill out so if you choose to go this way theres the first step already in place for you.

Debbie said...

I've had read your blog for a while and have prayed for you and your family. I nursed my youngest child until he was 10 months, but in hindsight, it would have been better to have switched him to soy formula earlier. I even tried the no dairy (for like 2 weeks and it KILLED me) and he still had lots of issues (severe excema (sp?), fussy, runny nose, fluid in his ears, etc.) When I finally, switched to soy milk it all went away. Turns out he was allergic to more foods than even our allergist had ever seen in a child this young. As hard as it is, sometimes the best thing to do is switch to formula. I'll keep praying.

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to also recommend contacting your Medicaid office to see if he qualifies based on his medical condition. My son was a 26 week preemie and he qualifies, even though we don't fall within the financial limits. (We do have to pay a monthly premium that is based on our income.) Because he qualifies for Medicaid, he automatically qualifies for WIC. Between Medicaid and WIC, his $40/can of formula is totally covered. We also went from expressed breastmilk (I pumped for 8 months) to formula because of possible allergies/intolerances similar to what you describe and the difference was also incredible! You are an awesome mama!!

Elizabeth said...

try wic. They were a lifesaver for us- the formula is free. Check with your local health departmeent.

Anonymous said...

I had to put my son on Alimentum, after trying Similac and Isomil. It too was a difference of night and day - he went from fussy fussy to a happy smiling all the time baby. He is now 6 months old and I am still afraid to take him off the alimentum - nutritionally, it is the same as regular formula.
Here are the WIC guidelines for NC
family of five can make $652 a week. Here is a link: http://www.nutritionnc.com/wic/wiceligb.htm

Try it and see. They normally give you Similac, but your doctor can sign a form and you could get the Alimentum if you qualify - I did and what a relief. My son wouldn't even drink the powdered alimentum, he has to drink the ready to feed. I guess there is a difference. It is $10 a quart, and a quart doesn't even last 1 day. And, shhh, I signed up on the similac website as having a baby under friends and family's name and addresses. I couldn't help myself - they send a sample of similac and isomil, which I give to someone who can use, but I use the 4 $5 coupons. Craigslist is good too.
Good Luck! I was sooo happy to read this helped him. I couldn't breastfeed my sons, and I felt tremendous guilt, but it wasn't going good - no use having a nervous breakdown over it.
Also, ask your doctors for samples - the always have them, and you could also call Similac and ask them.

Sashka said...

I'm a big breastfeeding advocate, but I know that doing an elimination diet is hard. Really, really hard (and time consuming, like you aren't busy enough already!). It could take weeks or months to figure out exactly what is bothering him - might not even be dairy at all - and in the meantime Jonah still has to heal all the time. Whatever makes him comfortable and healthy is the right thing to do at this point, I think. I don't have any money-saving tips for formula, but I know you've gotten lots of help already and I'm sure will get much more. :) I just wanted to chime in as one more BF advocate who doesn't blame you one bit.

The Chaney's said...

Praise the Lord! What great news!! I am with you, I knew I could not go no dairy either. The only help I found with the alimentum was a website where I got 6 for the price of 5 with free shipping -- babywuvinc.com. If you order, though, give it more time then they promise as every shipment always came in about 3 days after they said it would. And, if it makes you feel any better...we got a Discover Card for the very pursose of buying our son's formula. : ) And, I am happy to say now our son (15 months) has no reflux issues what-so-ever. We pray that will be the same for Jonah.
Continuing to lift you all in prayer in Alabama!

Anonymous said...

I couldn't go non-dairy either and so I stopped breast feeding my milk allergy baby around 2 months, you have done an amazing job and don't feel guilty for one minute!! I'm glad Jonah is eating better...my little guy, who is now 2 never ate well as a baby, so I know a little of what you are going through. Praise God for the eating issues looking up!!

I'll continue to pray for your family,
Tasha

Anonymous said...

Never have commented before - but all 3 of my boys (currently ages 4 and under) all had to have allimentum - but only the ready feed kind. Crazy? Our insurance didn't cover it - but our pediatrician called her similac rep and got us some coupons and some cases - and I called similac company (Ross Inc. I think) and the emailed me a huge stack of 5 dollars off. Good luck - just remember he won't be eating that much formula forever!

Kara said...

My son (who is 5 months) was also on Allimentum for about 4 months and we found ordering it on Ebay was the best. It is CRAZY expensive but like you we saw a HUGE difference in his eating habits.
I will start saving my coupons too bc he is now on a different brand. Is there an address to send them to? I never checked into it but I heard some insurance companies DO cover it. If not I know that there is one brand that is similar that is by perscription only and that may give you a better chance of getting it covered. Let me know if you need more info on that--I can find the name of it for u.
Hope that helps!

Susan said...

Check e-bay for formula coupons to buy and craigslist for coupons to buy or trade or even get free.

Anonymous said...

Well, it is FINE to switch from breast milk to formula. I did it. I know all about it breaking your heart. Did mine too. HOWEVER, it is worth it if he gains and eats and sleeps and grows. But, it is hard. I do understand. Do ask questions to see if you can add in some and that sort of thing. Keep tabs. Maybe one bottle of breast milk and others just formula, see what happens. ASK first of course and also do what your heart and head say. I will send along coupons if and when I find them. Can be a lifeline. Also, remember to look at drug stores. They often run their brand diapers on sale and they can be dirt cheap then, for sure! Just a thought. Hang in there. He is so sweet and cute and GROWING like mad! Jennifer in Southeast, NC

Grams said...

IT'S FORMULA NOT RAT POISON

The Arritt Family said...

Ask your pediatrician to give you samples of Formula. Rep's come usually once a month and bring loads of samples, and I'm sure they wouldn't mind giving you as much as you can carry out!

Sara G said...

I was going to tell you to check in to WIC also, but I see someone else already has...But do check into it.
Take care
Your baby boy is adorable!!

Stacie said...

your pediatrician should have a formula representative for ross pharmaceuticals (i.e. a similac rep). if your rep is super nice (like all the ones i have ever met as a peds rn), then they will sometimes be able to send a few cans or a case your way. it never hurts to ask!

Mike and Mindy Aumann said...

Don't let anyone judge you about how you choose to feed your child. You are the parent & know best.

I found WIC and early intervention to be helpful. Maybe they can help you with the formula as it's medically necessary??

Anonymous said...

Try checking Alice.com - they deliver basic grocery stuff (including formula) and I have heard that their prices are very competitive. I have never used it, but I have heard it recommended.

Anonymous said...

Not sure if someone mentioned this or not, but our Pediatrician's office gave us TONS of sample cans of formula (my son was on Nutramigen and it was way $$$). When they changed him to that one, they started giving us tons of it! Also, one of the nurses there told me to call the Enfamil company and see if they would send samples. Glory be, one I came home and they had shipped me a whole CASE of sample cans!! I found out, it NEVER hurts to ask, and you never know what they are willing to give away!

Still praying in Mississippi,
~Dana

LisaL said...

So glad to hear that he seems to be feeling better!! I understand your feelings about stopping the breastfeeding. I had to remove dairy from my diet with my youngest. It was awfully time consuming and difficult! and I didn't have the type of medical issues you have to deal with. My youngest had lots of breathing and digestive problems which did seem to get better. I also used Nutramigen and can sympathize with the expense.

The suggestions you received already are great! Our pediatrician gave us samples, too. The other thing I would suggest (but not sure if you have it near you) joining FreeCycle.org There are groups for different areas that people post free stuff on for pick up - you can also do "wanted" posts. I was able to get several cans of Nutramigen through there when people had extras that they didn't need anymore.

Hope he continues to improve!

Grape News said...

If you do stop breastfeeding, but have left over milk--check to see if there is a milk bank near you. If you are willing (it wigs some people out) milk banks will take donated breast milk and pay you cash. Google "milk bank" and you'll get lots of choices. In a round about way, it would help pay for the formula :)

Misty said...

I was so excited when my son was born to be able to breastfeed. However, he it was always coming back up. (9+ years ago I was not aware of the possibility of a lactose issue and I drank a LOT of milk!) One week before he was 6 months old, we went to visit family in TX (we are in OK) and he completely quit nursing. I was beside myself, but did what any mom would do - I finally put him on formula. For months his dr wanted me to supplement but I tried to increase his number of feedings and he was gaining weight, but slowly. The first formula I bought was soy (since he was a spitter-upper :o) and it was amazing the difference it made. He got really chunky, really quickly and did more as he wasn't feeding as often. While I was sad that I had to quit nursing so early, the positive difference that using formula made was encouraging. Should I get pregnant again (we'd LOVE to have another, but God's timing is perfect!) I plan to try cutting back or cutting out my dairy altogether - I don't know if that will be possible, though! All this to say - been there, done that and while it was sad at the time, it is so easy to be excited and happy for the positive changes it brought about. Still praying for you all!

Nikki said...

http://trus.imageg.net/graphics/corp/int071909cpns.pdf

Don't say I never gave you anything. :)

Hope you're having a great day!

Melissa said...

No one had better judge you, girl! I certainly won't (especially now that I've been reading "The Shack")! You and only you can do what is the very best for Jonah, so you do what you need to do, and walk in the freedom that is Jesus.

Oh, and I'm pretty clueless on why the diaper inserts and/or disposables inside the cloth, but if it's of any use, my sister told me she used to attach a maxi pad to the inside of her son's diapers, just to catch the pee and make the diapers last longer. Peel and toss. Just an FYI.

Still fasting and praying. Love and blessings,
Melissa

Barb said...

First time commenter, long time prayer warrior for Jonah :) I, too, had to stop nursing for the same reasons. Alimentum was a God-send, albeit a stinky one :)

Here's my best tips:
Everytime you take him to the Dr, ask if they have any samples. They don't often give out Alimentum so usually have a bunch on hand are a little more generous since it's so expensive.
Contact your local Ross representative (makers of Similac) and you can get samples and coupons from them.
If he's ever in the hospital, talk to every nurse...same as the docs, they usually have extra.
Ebay...not just for coupons. I got great auctions there for Mom who had to move to something else.
Wholesale clubs...if you have BJs they can order it in for you and you can use the Similac coupons too!
HTH!

Cathy said...

Patrice,
Delurking to let you know I have 3 packages of g-diaper inserts that have been taking up room in a closet for awhile. I know you said you're using the disposables, but I'd be thrilled to send these to you if you could use them. Drop me a note at jacesb@gmail.com if you'd like them.

carrie jo said...

Patrice, I know to well the guilt with not being able to bf. I have 3 children and only got to bf for a few months each.

Your doing great. Just a quick question. If the bf is what has been causing the tummy upset, maybe you can go down to the least expensive brand. Talk to the dr who told you to switch to the similac a and see what dr says.

Good luck with everything.

Cristin said...

I get a $5.00 off coupon for simlac about every other month. I would love to forward them to you.

Pam, mom, honey, said...

I know this may sound crazy but you might want to check into WIC. I would never think that we would have qualified. At one point they said we did because my daughter was diagnosed failure to thrive. You may want to check into it. The amount you are allowed to make is much higher than I would have thought. My husband is a Sargeant First Class in the army and we still qualify. I started recieving it when our preemie was on 24 calorie formula. My theory was that my husband works really hard and if this would make his life easier than it was worth it.

Jenny said...

Check your local Craigslist for people giving away coupons!

LeAnn said...

My daughter was on special formula for GI issues because she was born with Hirschsprung's disease and had to have her colon and a third of her small intestine removed. Since she was disabled I put her on SSI and she got medicaid. Medicaid paid for her formula since it was necessary for her survival until she was 18 months and could start solids. They pad for all her formula with no problems. Have you put Jonah on SSI? Have you looked into medicaid for disabilities? I think you would have no problem getting it and it would save you a ton of money.

Cheri Peoples said...

You need to have aquaphor and similac and diapers and any other companies you use regularly or would like to use in the future-do advertising on your blog and either pay you for the ad spots or give you free product for a free spot on your blog