Sunday, March 1, 2009


Ruby wasn't feeling well for a couple of days. She was really fussy (not like her), she kept crying out (not like her), and she was throwing up a lot of clear fluid (not like her) and her movements were sometimes jerky like she was hurting (not like her).

I made the decision yesterday evening to buy a bottle of Gripe water and give it a try.

I picked it up on our way to some friends' house for dinner. Except I realized that I had no way to administer the 1 teaspoon of gripe water that is suggested for Ruby's age. So I called the nurse hotline to ask if I could put it in her bottle. Big mistake.

I explained to the nurse that I needed to give my baby some gripe water and wondered if I could put it in with my breastmilk in her bottle. Simple question, no?

Well. Nurse told me that gripe water is MEDICATION and that they can't dispense advice on medication. Why do I want to give my baby gripe water anyways? Did my doctor tell me to give her gripe water? No? Then why would I do it? And what makes me think she has a tummy ache?

Because I'm her fucking mother and I know - is what I wish I said, but instead I explained Ruby's fussiness, her spitting up so much clear fluid, her crying, her seeming to be uncomfortable.

Nurse then launches into a diatribe about how I should apparently be feeding Ruby... She says that Ruby is throwing up because babies tummys are so small and I'm obviously feeding her too much. If she's throwing up, it's because it won't fit in her tummy. (But it's clear fluid, not milky and it's an hour or two AFTER she's eaten). No, I'm definitely feeding her too much. I should feed her less food more often even if that's not what Ruby wants. Because Ruby isn't smart enough to know when she's full (oh yes she is). And why am I not breastfeeding her anyways? Because I should breastfeed her more and bottle feed her less because the milk comes out slower from the breast than it does from a bottle so Ruby will realize she's full faster if she's on the breast and it will stop her from overeating. (But everything has been perfect up until now with the way I am doing things) Well the composition of my milk is "probably" changing right now and it might be getting more fatty so Ruby should be eating less and should be on the breast more than on the bottle for sure.

Oh, and about the crying. Did I not receive a DVD from the hospital about crying? (Yes I did) Have I watched it? No?? Why not? (Because I've never had a need to because Ruby is not a crying kind of baby). Well maybe I should sit down this evening and watch the DVD because it would explain a lot about my baby that I don't know. (Because clearly I don't have a clue about my 11 week old baby) It will explain to me why she is crying lately. It's because baby's crying peaks between 2-5 months and that is clearly what's happening right now. Yes, even if up until this point Ruby only cries when she needs something.

Ok so lets see if I have this right... the crying just coincidentally started in the past two days at the same time that she started spitting up clear fluid, and started being unhappy and fussy, and got jerky little movements and then cries out? And my milk composition is changing right at the very same time? And it's also at the very same time that I'm suddenly feeding her too much?

And you can diagnose all of that shit right over the phone????

Wow. I'm sure glad our tax dollars are going to such a helpful and worthy service.


And so silly little rookie mom me, who apparently knows nothing about my own baby - I went ahead and dipped Ruby's pacifier into the gripe water and gave it to her that way. And this miraculously stopped Ruby's fussing, her crying, her puking and she was able to get some sleep. And she woke up this morning smiling and laughing again.

But what do I know?

Funny how mothers intuition works. Better than any know-it-all nurse from a hotline.


Emily said...

I think you should complain. It is ridiculous for her to try and diagnose over the phone and if they can't dispense medication advice she should have given you a number to call. Did you call Mother Risk or was it some other service? Mother Risk is usually really good so I hope it wasn't them but I def think you should complain!

Jen said...

Stupid nurse. Ignore her, she has no idea what she's talking about.

Elizabeth's gripe water came with one of those little syringes that you use to squirt it into her mouth. She spits some of it back out, but is willing to swallow some, especially if I chase it with a pacifier. I've given it to her from a bottle too- not mixed with anything, but straight. I don't see any reason you couldn't mix it with her milk.

Sarah @ said...

What a jerk of a nurse. I'm glad you ignored her; sometimes a mom knows best!

Emily said...

I don't get those nurse hotlines. It's like they read their responses from a textbook and that is that. Screw 'em. You won't be calling them anymore. I think it's wonderful that you're going with your instinct.

Candi B. said...

OMFG...I hate those hotlines. F-ing idiots have no clue. Gripe Water was the only thing that stopped Carter's belly aches when he had Hurty Farts.

Tobacco Brunette said...

Wow...will you be calling that nurse hotline again? She was acting like you were giving Ruby crack, not gripe water.

I'm glad you trusted your instincts. People always told me that I'd know my kid better than the experts and I found it hard to believe...but a few weeks in, I became a believer.

sara said...

Stupid nurse giving you that sh-tty assvice! You as the mom will know your mommy instincts. I use gripe water with Brynn sometimes so you are so right on the ball I"m sure. Not sure if this will help, but I just bought a larger medication syringe and use that to give it to her in the measured out dose recommended on the bottle. I think it's either 3ml or 5ml I'm not sure. But I do give it to her and it helps. Kuddos for you for knowing what's best with your kiddo...your a good mommmy ((Hugs))

nancy said...

heh. I laugh because only having had experience, do I know what you ask/don't ask health care "professionals".

Amazing gripe water to have solved her issues in just dipping it in? Wow!! :)

(fyi - go get a little syringe from walgreens or whatever pharmacy. Just ask the counter for a baby syringe and they'll give it to you.)

Femme au Foyer said...

"Hurty Farts" ha ha--Little Husband gets those all the time. I need to get some Gripe Water!