Wednesday, July 10, 2013

My sweet Olivia

Olivia had an appointment with her pediatrician today to discuss why she has completely fallen off her growth curve. At this point, we aren't doing any aggressive treatment, but are needing to really boost calories. While we were there I was told something I have known ALL of Olivia's life.

She has severe anxiety and ADHD. This is very common in extremely premature children, well, even in those born before 37 weeks show a greater percentage of it. Here is just an example of her anxiety:

While there, the doctor asked me if her feeding therapist had suggested doing a "calorie count" on her. Olivia broke into sobbing tears," A calorie count?? I don't want to have that!! No!!!" And we had to talk her back down and explain that it is just something I write down on a piece of paper. Things like this happen multiple times a day and you really have to watch how you word things around her. And she is still sleeping in a tent at night. You know how most of us can't sleep with our legs outside the covers because it makes us feel unsafe for some reason? Who knows why we feel safer under the covers, but security is what the tent provides. Her doctor laughed," So, tent it is!"

Anyway, our challenge is to address her lack of weight gain in a way that doesn't increase anxiety. She may be deficient in growth hormones (which is common in preemies) but that would result in growth hormone shots daily which she wouldn't tolerate. Honestly, she would probably have to be sedated for even a blood draw. It may just be that she is not taking in enough calories, especially for her level of activity. So I have got to really try to boost her calorie intake without forcing her to eat anything. That's tougher than it sounds. And, Olivia is being prescribed an antihistamine that is also an appetite stimulant which will help calm her down as well. Maybe it will be one thing that helps all three issues? I can only pray. And pray and pray and pray.

We have come so far and are so blessed with how well Olivia is doing. Words can't describe how amazing she is! I always knew that there would be lingering issues to address and I just pray that I handle them with the grace and wisdom that only God can provide.

Jodi- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh best of luck with all that...and if it helps reassure you at that photo of Olivia with her cousin, there is no obvious physical difference. Appearance wise, they look pretty similar. Olivia certainly doesn't look skinny or underweight. They both look like typical kids.