Dear Nolan: Months 5 -7

Dear Nolan-

Here were are again, way behind on your monthly updates. So instead of apologizing, I’m just gonna do my best to catch up and record what’s been going on with you lately. I shared your 3-4 month update the day after we got your tongue tie revised with a laser. That same day we went to your 4-month appointment and you had dropped down to the 9th percentile for weight and the doctor had given us a month to get your weight up.

So, later that week went headed to a lactation consultant. She said it didn’t seem to be a supply issue. We did a weighted feed and you took 4 oz, but only after I forced you to nurse both sides. You took 2.5 oz on the first side and typically you’re more of a snacker. You’ve never liked to eat for long periods of time and would be content with just one side so I often skipped the second side. The LC encouraged me to try to get you to eat on both sides at every feed. Over the next week, I did my best but sometimes you weren’t interested, sometimes you ate but then puked half of it up and sometimes it just wasn’t possible with your brother and sister running around. But a week later you had gained 7 oz so we figured that was the ticket. 

After that first week I got a little lax about pushing both sides and the next week you’d lost an oz at our weight check. I learned you’re kind of a lazy nurser and if I wasn’t fully focused and working hard to get you a full feeding on both sides at each feed, you were probably going to have some weight gain issues. That meant no sitting and scrolling social media while feeding you. I had to focus, keep you engaged, do breast compressions while you were feeding, etc. So, I started being really focused again and after another week you gained 5 oz. The LC looked at your weight gain since birth and you had gained more than the minimum amount for an exclusively breastfed baby. She suspected you were just destined to be long and lean like your mama was as a baby. Since it had been about a month since your last appt, we relayed all this info the pediatrician and she said to keep doing what we’re doing and come back for your six-month appt. 

After another 4 weeks, I took you back to the lactation consultant so we could get a weight using the same scale before we went to your six-month appointment because there was a definite difference in your weight on the digital scale at the LC’s office and the manual scale at the pediatrician. Since your last weight check, you’d gained 12 ounces. The lactation consultant told me the acceptable weight gain for your age (5-6 months) was 3-5 ounces per week for an exclusively breastfed baby. So you’d gained 3 ounces per week.

You were definitely smaller than your brother and sister were at six months, but we headed to your six-month appointment feeling ok about it. However, the doctor told us you’d dropped from the 9th to the 3rd percentile for weight which meant that for your first month of life you were in the 50th percentile and you’d trended down every month since then. Your height had also dropped from the 80th percentile to the 65th. Our pediatrician was worried and said that if something were wrong like your heart, lungs, kidneys etc were working too hard and burning extra calories, the body protects the brain first, which is why your head circumference stayed on track, and then height and then weight. So kiddos would often fall off the chart in weight first, then height etc and that could indicate a problem. So she wanted us to get some testing done. You got blood drawn to check your thyroid and other levels, and EKG to check your heart, we collected urine to get that checked etc and everything came back normal. She’d been debating between us seeing an endocrine or GI specialist and since all your labs looked good, she sent us to see a GI specialist just to get things check on their end.

With the stress of all the testing and weight gain issues, I could tell my supply had dropped. She didn’t initially recommend formula since we’d done some weighted feeds and you seemed to be intaking enough, but I wasn’t against supplementing with formula if I needed to. I started pumping and doing some triple feeds to boost my supply again. Meanwhile, you were quickly losing interest in nursing because of low supply and a slow letdown. The weekend after all your tests came back normal but before we got in to see GI, I started supplementing with formula. Even though my supply was coming back up, I knew in my heart that the doctor was going to recommend supplementing. 

During the waiting period, I was starting to get super anxious, trying to figure out which formula to choose, being overwhelmed with all the options, worrying because you were nursing even less than before and getting frustrated. So, to ease my own anxiety, I did some research and then just picked a formula (Enfamil Enspire) and started it! It’s easy to go down a rabbit hole and get overwhelmed when picking a formula so for my own sanity, I just needed to make a decision and get started. I continued to pump when I could to boost my supply, continued to nurse and gave you a few ounces of formula after each feed. 

By the time we saw GI later the next week you had already gained weight. You were handling the formula well, not getting constipated like your brother did when he started formula and my supply was also back up and I’d figured out a position to get a quicker letdown so you were nursing better as well. At the GI appt, they said all looked good and that it was likely you just needed some additional calories from the formula. The pediatrician pushed out our weight check out a few weeks so we go back mid-July for another weight check but you’ve definitely gained weight and we’re finally getting into a rhythm. You’re getting 15-18 oz of formula per day and nursing the rest. 

In the meantime, we’ve also started solids. It’s been a totally different experience than with your siblings. Your brother was ready to eat anything and everything at 5.5 months and never looked back. Your sister wasn’t ready until closer to seven months but also dove in and never looked back. You have been much slower to adjust to solid food. Pretty much everything that touched your tongue for the first 3 weeks caused you to make the most terrible faces. There’s a whole highlight saved on my Instagram if you want to watch his reactions (called Nolbot eats). 

But each day I try to offer you a few tastes of a few things and you’re slowly getting more interested! It will be interesting to watch your feeding journey to continue to develop. We’re working on exposing you to the top 8 allergens and have covered wheat, dairy, peanuts and eggs so far.

Right around six months, you figured out how to sit up. You went from struggling to stay up for 1-2 seconds to sitting for minutes at a time in about 2 weeks. Now you’re at 7 months (as of yesterday), sitting like a champ, close to crawling and like to stand up with assistance for short periods of time. 

You don’t have any teeth yet but I think one might be coming in. You just switched to size 3 diapers this week. You’re wearing mostly 9-month clothes. Some six-month stuff still fits and some 12 month but most are too big. 

You’re a happy baby for the most part. You nap on the go almost always and still aren’t sleeping through the night but slowly making progress. 

You spend a lot of time in the Ergo and also like the stroller. We go to the pool a lot and you enjoy splashing in the water. Once you learned to sit I started bringing you in the shower with me and you sit and play happily on the floor. 

You LOVE your brother (and sister too) but Squish especially can always make you smile. We’re constantly telling him to be gentle but i think you guys are going to have a very special bond. You’ve started playing with some of our musical toys and like them!

You’re a mama’s boy for sure, but you love your daddy too!

I love watching you grow but also wish time would slow down a little bit!

Love you, 


PS. You can read Squish’s 7-month update here. And Lyssie’s here.


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