Miss Molly has been a puzzle from day one. First, she broke up the whole girl, boy, girl, boy pattern. Then there was the medical drama of her first day, and she hasn’t quit trying to keep us on our toes ever since.
She began as one of those run of the mill fussy babies. Screamy might define her a bit better. From birth she could be heard across the house even without a baby monitor. She is a zero-to-sixty crier. She is either content or screaming. There is no middle ground. Her cry is something between a fire alarm and the screeching of a Ringwraith.
Around 2 months old she added coughing to her repertoire. Her cough was dry, breathy, and most troubling of all – constant. I have heard that cough before in asthma kids after running or jumping around. I asked around to see if she could have environmental allergies, but was assured by many people that it takes 2-3 seasons of exposure before those kinds of allergies can develop. We waited a bit to see if it was just a mild cold , but after a couple months we caved in and took her to see an allergist.
During a grueling two hour appointment, Molly was tested for both environmental and food allergies. Many of the environmental ones came up strongly positive. (One of the allergists later told me she had the worst environmental allergies of any baby she has seen.) And the big surprise was that she tested strongly positive for several foods as well. She was 4 months old at the time. We left the allergist office with several prescriptions including asthma medications and an Epipen Jr. and one very shocked mommy. Around the same time we also began (with great success) treating her for GERD, which reduced her fussiness.
Over the last couple of months we have dealt with two major asthma attacks, some asthma misinformation from a well-meaning pediatrician (which caused the second attack) and muddled conclusions with regards to the food allergies.
So for now we have established an asthma baseline for Molly’s maintenance medications, and her GI doctor and Allergist both agree that she should remain Top 8 Free with regards to foods for at least her first year, if not longer. (The Top 8 Food Allergens are: milk, soy, eggs, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, and shellfish, plus apples and chicken, which she has tested positive to, and pears which she seems to have failed on trial.) It has been hard to get used to having to give daily medications to a child who looks so well, but we have seen the repercussions of taking her off the medications. The truth is that she is well because of those meds.
Other than that, Molly is doing amazing! She is nearly 9 months old now, completely uninterested in solid food, crawling fast, and determined to figure out how to walk. She waves Bye-bye and says Mama, Dada, Buhbuh, and Nana – which may or may not mean anything depending on what she is pointing at and who she is talking to. She is a serious baby and saves her smiles for those who really earn them, and she LOVES to swim. When we put her on the top step in the pool she will scooch her butt off the step and into the water and “swim” to us. It’s very cute!