Born May 25th, 2008
2:59 pm
6 pounds 13 ounces
Length 19 3/4 inches

Monday, June 8, 2009

Kinley And Her New Toys

I have to make a disclaimer at the beginning of this post. I have not been able to get pics of Kinley playing with all her new birthday toys, so please don't be offended if you don't see a pic with your gift to Kinley. Trust me, Kinley has enjoyed playing with all her new toys!!

1 Year Special Care Clinic Visit

We were on the fence about going back to the special care clinic (Kinley hasn't been there since December), but we finally decided to go ahead and schedule a 1 year appointment for June 4th. Kinley was actually supposed to have an OT visit as well, but due to scheduling difficulties between the special care clinic and the OT department, I was never able to get corresponding appointments, so we decided to forgo the OT appointment since Kinley sees an OT every other week at our house anyway. I think what I was hoping to get from this appointment was confirmation that Kinley is doing really well and does not need to be a patient of the special care clinic anymore. Well, lets just say that was not the opinion of the special care clinic.

Every visit to the special care clinic starts out in the weight room where nurses check Kinley's oxygen saturation, blood pressure, weight, length and head circumference. Since Kinley just had her pediatrician visit earlier that week, she pretty much flipped out as soon as one of the nurses touched her. I tried to explain that she didn't have to get any shots at this appointment, but I don't think Kinley was listening to me. She screamed the whole time!

After we were done in the weight room we headed to our exam room where Kinley finally calmed down as she played with Kevin and I and the large mirror in the room. The quiet did not last long though, as soon as the nurse practitioner came into the room the screaming started again.

Now, Kinley's appointment was back on June 4th and I haven't posted until now because, for one I have not had much time, and secondly I thought it was best to wait and calm down a bit before posting on this appointment. I know that Kiney is doing really well, Kevin and I see Kinley's progress on a daily basis. We know what she has had to overcome and as far as we are concerned she is a happy, healthy baby.

So, to make a long story short, instead of leaving the special care clinic on a good note with plans to discharge from their care we left with a screaming baby and recommendations for a hearing test, swallow study, ENT referral, OT visit at Children's Mercy (not just with our home OT) and a follow up visit with the special care clinic in August. Needless to say, this is not what I was hoping for. I do appreciate the fact that the special care clinic is thorough and I do believe they think they have her best interest in mind, but I just wish they could see her as a more "normal" child. Yes, she did have a VERY rough start, but for the most part she has overcome her initial problems and is doing almost all the things a normal 1 year old would be doing at this point. For instance, she is eating well and maintaining her growth curve, so her pediatrician said we could try her on regular whole milk and just do a weight check in a month to make sure all is well. The special care clinic would not even consider letting her do a trial on regular milk. They recommended that we give her Pediasure or whole milk with Carnation Instant Breakfast twice a day. I just think sometimes the opinions of the special care clinic are a little overkill. I do have to admit that I am on board with the hearing test and swallow study though.

Since special care clinic appointments take up a whole afternoon, we just let Kinley play and relax at home the rest of the day. She slept really well that night after all her fussing and screaming. Poor Kinley.

1 Year Pediatrician Visit

On Monday, June 1st Kinley had her 1 year appointment with her pediatrician, Dr.S. Kinley did pretty good at her appointment considering that she got her 1 year shots and a toe stick to check for anemia and lead. Kinley gets shots at almost all of her visits to Dr.S. and I think she is starting to catch on. Kinley was a little nervous the whole time we were there and when she finally had to get the shots, well, she pretty much lost it at that point. Poor Kinley. At least she should be done with shots for a while now. Yay!!

As far as her growth goes, Kinley is hanging in there. Her weight was 18lbs and 9oz, which puts her in the 15% for weight. Length was 30.25 inches, or 90% and head circumference was 18.25 inches, or 75%. Kinley's length and head circumference percentile have stayed pretty much the same. Kinley's weight has slowly decreased in percentile, but Dr. S. assured us that this is normal for all kids at this age and overall Kinley is still doing really well.

Since Kinley is eating pretty well and her growth is appropriate for her age, Dr. S. said that he would be comfortable switching Kinley over to regular whole milk instead of formula. He said it was up to us, but he thinks Kinley does not really need Pediasure or whole milk fortified with Carnation Instant Breakfast either. He did recommend that we get a weight check in a month or so to make sure Kinley is holding onto her weight with the change in diet. I was very happy when he said this because it means that we can discontinue yet another "treatment". Now Kinley can drink regular whole milk just like most other kids her age. What a big girl!

Dr. S. was not overly concerned with the fact that Kinley can only say 1 word and she does not associate "dada" with Kevin. He said all kids are different and learn at different paces. He did think a hearing test was a good idea just to rule out the possibility of hearing problems though.

All and all it was a pretty typical appointment and Kinley does not need to have another appointment until she is 18 months old. It sounds like a long time away, but I am sure it will fly by.

OT Visit

Kinley still sees her OT from Infants and Toddlers of Johnson County at our home every other Monday. Kinley continues to make great strides in her feeding, we just briefly touch on feeding at her appointments now. At her last visit earlier this week Kinley's feeding skills were at the 10-12 month old range. The exception to that is meats. Kinley still has difficulty chewing and swallowing meats. For the most part she will accept meat when offered to her, but she will just let it sit in her mouth for a long time before eventually chewing and swallowing it. The good news is that she does not cough or choke on the meats, she is just not in a big hurry to eat it once in her mouth. As far as self feeding skills, those are closer to a 6-10 month old, but that is mostly my fault. I have a fear of making a huge mess at mealtimes, so I tend to feed Kinley too much and not let her experiment with the spoon and fork as much as I should. Kinley is getting pretty good at her sippy cups now, and those used to get pretty messy, so maybe there is hope for me as far as letting Kinley feed herself more. Kinley seems to actually enjoy her sippy cups now, so we only give her flavored milk every once in a while as a treat, but for the most part she gets regular whole milk. As for what Kinley eats now, she still loves yogurt of any flavor, goldfish crackers, graham crackers with a little butter on them, spaghetti o's with meatballs, bananas, ritz crackers with easy cheese, strawberry fig newtons, sweet potato fries and vienna sausage. I try to get Kinley to eat veggies, but she is not a fan. She will eat mandarin oranges, peaches and pear chunks, but that is not really her favorite either. I guess I will just have to keep trying. If anyone has any good tips for getting Kinley to eat more fruits and veggies please let me know!

Ever since we started to focus more on gross and fine motor skills with OT, probably about 2 months ago, Kinley has been able to catch up and is now at the 10-12 month old range for both areas. That is pretty much right on track for her age! Great job Kinley, all your hard work has paid off.

When Kinley's motor skills started to take off, and her eating was well on track, we started to notice that Kinley is not talking as much as she used to be. Kinley used to say dada, but didn't really associate it with Kevin. We have not heard her say dada for a couple of weeks now, and she hasn't really picked up any new words. We have been working on communication skills for about a month now with little progress. We started off by trying to get her to say dada again or possibly even mama for once with no avail. So, we started to backtrack a little and went to encouraging gestures with daily routines or some songs like patty cake. Kinley will raise her hands when I say "up" and gesture to pick her up, she will wave, but not in context to anything, and she likes to take my hands and push them together to make a clapping noise, but that is about the extent of her communication skills at this point. At Kinley's last visit the OT watched her play and was a little concerned with how quietly she plays. Kinley's OT recommended that we have Kinley's hearing checked to rule out hearing loss as a reason for the delay in communication skills. Hopefully everything will be fine, but better to find out as soon as possible.