Galen’s World – an Update

I’ve been promising an update on Galen for awhile now and just haven’t had the time to sit down and write about it. I thought I’d make it a priority tonight.

As many of you know, Galen has had some feeding issues that were starting to get worrying to me.  All my kiddos have been a little “late” to start solid foods, but as Galen hit twelve months and went beyond without any solids, I started getting a little concerned.

Galen didn’t just seem disinterested in solids – he seemed to be unable to swallow anything thicker than a liquid.  He had a lot of gagging, choking, throwing up if anything did get down.  He hadn’t gained weight in months and actually started losing some weight.

I decided to bring it up with the doctor and we took a bit of a “wait and see” approach.  Another month or so went by and Galen had lost weight.  He nursed constantly, but he’s incredibly active and just seemed to need more calories (though he didn’t seem to be hungry or very interested in food.)

We had a swallow study done at our local hospital, which showed that food is slow to clear Galen’s esophogus but no real problems.  The therapist said it’s pretty common and it will probably continue to get better as Galen gets older.

We were referred to the Pediatric Feeding Program in our hospital’s therapy department.  Galen has been going for a few weeks now and it has been a good experience for us.

Scott and I were worried at first about what they might want to feed Galen, since we try to follow a very traditional diet.  However, that has not been an issue at all. Our therapist and the entire team working for Galen have been incredibly respectful of our choices with Galen’s diet and with his continued nursing.

I make all of Galen’s food to bring into his appointments and that works very well for us.

Right now the goal is to get Galen’s intake up.  The therapist has been very helpful and has taught me a lot about getting Galen to eat – and to enjoy eating.  He’s eating completely pureed foods now (though he can eat scrambled eggs with gusto!) as we work on getting him eating more.

In general I just puree whatever we are eating for dinner.  Having a high-powered blender has turned out to be a real blessing.  We spoon feed Galen and he’s now really enjoying eating.  He looks forward to eating and taking bites.

He’s still nursing a lot and I’ve been proactively working to keep my milk supply high for him.

Galen has a weight check coming up soon and I’m actually looking forward to this one because he looks like he’s filled out some and he feels chunkier to me.

It has been really interesting having Galen’s feeding issues because the other kids pretty much just went from nursing to eating anything and everything put in front of them.  Galen is a special case, but its apparent even now that he has his siblings’ taste in food – he’ll eat anything and everything as long as it’s pureed!

Galen was having some constipation issues which I think were related to his feeding problems.  We started him on daily doses of an infant probiotic mix and that coupled with getting more food in seems to be working for his digestive system.  He’s regular again and seems a lot more comfortable.

I’m really enthusiastic about how Galen will do with eating in the coming months – he’s made a lot of progress just in the few weeks since we started going to the feeding clinic.

He’s happy, energetic little baby – he almost always has a smile and he’s always trying to climb into everything!  He also has perfect proportions and a beautiful face.  I’m pretty confident that with more calories he’ll bulk right up weight-wise.  We’re really blessed to have him, and the lessons he gives us 🙂

About the author 

Kristen

Kristen is a pregnancy coach, student midwife, and a mama to 8 - all born naturally! I've spent nearly two decades helping mamas have healthy babies, give birth naturally, and enjoy the adventure of motherhood. Does complete support for a sacred birth and beautiful beginning for your baby resonate with you? Contact me today to chat about how powerful guidance and coaching can transform your pregnancy, birth, and mothering journey <3

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  1. Hi Kristen,
    I was wondering what kind of blender you have. I am looking for a blender that can really puree. Mine can never seem to get all the chunks out.
    Thanks,
    Lara

  2. Laura,

    My blender is a Hamilton Beach 12-Speed and it will really puree Galen’s foods (on speed 12). I do need to add extra liquid to it to get the puree, but it’s not enough to get it “watery.” It stays thick to stick to the spoon, but is totally smooth. I usually add heavy cream from our local grass-fed dairy herd, but for some recipes I use chicken broth.

    Our OT recommends the Magic Bullet, too. She says it will puree absolutely anything – that’s what they use in the feeding clinic. I would have ordered that if our blender wasn’t cutting it.

  3. Angela,

    I am paying close attention to my diet and using a lot of the strategies I’ve detailed in this article: How to Improve Milk Supply Through Nutrition

    I’ve also been drinking a Mama’s Milk Tea from Bulk Herb Store. I noticed a difference in supply within a couple of days. Here’s a link to that, she gives lots of info about the tea:

    http://www.bulkherbstore.com/Mamas-Milk-Tea

    I’m still nursing Galen on demand, too, and trying to make sure I drink plenty of water – that’s always been one of the most challenging things for me!

  4. Thanks for sharing this. I am just catching up with your blog after several months away, and was very interested to hear about Galen’s feeding. My 10-month old did NOT like solids when we first started him at 6 – 7 months, and he’s only now starting to eat things that he can pick up himself (spoons seem to be the enemy). Part of this seems to be personality, and part seems to be related to his reflux. Anyways, I can sympathize with working hard to keep your milk supply up!! We are still going strong here too.

    Have you picked up at the feeding clinic whether it’s developmentally okay to go straight to finger foods and skip purees and chunky stages?

    My main question for you is what infant probiotic are you using, and where did you get it?

    Thanks!

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