Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Got Milk?

In Oliver's one year update post I mentioned that we were working on the transition to cow's milk. I'd be happy to nurse him forever, but I've been ready to say farewell to Bessie the Breastpump for awhile now, so we figured, now is as good a time as any.  Our plan was to go slow, we're in no hurry, we'd do the switch in a gentle manner and get him used to it a little at a time.  He's had other dairy before so we figured it wouldn't be any big deal.

The first couple of days we noticed he was kind of scratching at his eyes as if they itched after he had his oatmeal, which we started adding a little bit of milk too.  We didn't think anything of it at first, just figured he must have irritated his eye somehow.  But then by the end of the week he had a sudden rather alarming reaction to his afternoon bottle that had about an ounce of cow's milk mixed in with the breastmilk - hives, sneezing, runny nose, wheezing and spitting up - he hasn't spit up since he was a pretty little baby.  The timing was good at least, this happened on Friday and we had his one year doctor appointment scheduled for Monday.  We stopped giving him the straight milk for the weekend and planned to ask Dr. Uncle what that was all about.

It was confusing to us because he has had tons of things cooked with milk/dairy and has had no problem and has eaten some cheese with no problem.  When we explained this to Dr. Uncle though he said with milk allergies it is often the protein found in the milk that causes the problem, it breaks down more when it is cooked, so that would explain why it doesn't affect him hardly at all when he eats something like a cream based soup for example.  It is also different from a lactose intolerance, it doesn't really cause stomach distress, it is much more of an actual allergic reaction.  

So our options are wait three months and try again or we can get a blood test done now that should show if he is indeed allergic to the milk protein and then we'll know we have to go to soy or something else.  The good news is that in many cases kids his age outgrow this allergy by the time they're two or three years old.  We took a couple of days to think it over and are going to go ahead and schedule the test so we have a clear answer and then we can go from there.  

I'm oddly not panicked or upset about this at all and I think it's because I have several friends who have dealt with these types of allergies with their kids and a good friend of mine and Nate's sister also have dairy allergies as adults so I'm already very used to dairy free recipes, although it does look like we can still cook with milk, but he won't be drinking it for now.  No milk and cookies for Ollie.

Everything else at his doctor appointment went great.  He weighs exactly 24 pounds and is 30 inches tall now.  He is hitting all his marks just right and based on things we were telling Dr. Uncle he says we should expect him to start walking any day now.  So, he's healthy and happy and we can deal with this other little blip in his world.

And hey, if he can't have milk, there's always beer....

Just kidding!  I'll make sure to update after we get the results from the blood test, but it looks like we'll be working on soy milk.  For now, I just keep pumping and nursing - I have to admit, that isn't the worst thing ever in the grand scheme of things either.  Love the cuddles with this little guy when he eats, so no harm in keeping that going!  And Bessie and I can cuddle up for a bit longer too.

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