Tuesday, May 27, 2008


See those pictures down below? That sweet adorable happy smiling face? Imagine it screaming in pain. This is going to be one of those T.M.I. entries, so if you are that reader that claims I "say too much", it's time for you to stop reading now. Seriously. Stop.

My sweet baby girl has started sampling solid food. She has had pears and apples and sweet potatoes and peas. She loooooooves every new flavor! Sometimes she'll roll the first bite around in her mouth for a moment before swallowing it, but a few moments later she'll open her mouth like a little bird waiting for more. Up until a few weeks ago Madeline was strictly breastfed. Now she gets fruits and veggies and rice cereal in addition to the breast milk.

Breast fed babies don't poop every day. If I recall it's because their bodies use so much of the nutrients in the milk that there's not much wasted. Anyhow, strictly breastfed babies have pretty soft poop, so going from breast milk to pureed fruits and vegetables makes the poop change. It has become a little less soft. In FACT, last week Maddie had a 2 foot long poop. I kid you not. Ask Jenn.. my husband took a picture of it and I think we showed it to her. (I have put Maddie on the toilet since she was about 6 weeks old.) I am not going to post the picture on here, but I'll email it to you if you want me to. :-)

So anyway, I've been used to Maddie only pooping 3 or so times a week. I started to get a little concerned when she didn't go at all over this holiday weekend. We started going on 4, then 5, then 6 days today. She had been making straining sounds, but with no results. So this morning when we woke up she was straining soooo hard and grunting soooo loud and her face was turning super red. I was really worried about her because she started getting a little distressed too. I put her on the toilet and she started straining even harder. Soon her grunts turned into crying and occasionally a high pitched scream. After a few minutes a hard little poop pebble came out.

We began our day, Maddie on the floor with some toys and me checking my emails. I called her doctor and the nurse wrote down my questions and said she'd call me back after she had a chance to talk to the doctor. Soon Maddie started straining again and I whisked her off to the toilet. Her grunting quickly became cries again, so when her Daddy came to check on us I asked him to call the doctor and tell them what was going on. The nurse told us to come by in an hour.

The doctor put my mind at ease a little, saying Maddie at least had bowel sounds and was passing gas (signs that everything is functioning as it should be). She suggested some good old fashioned prune juice diluted with water. She said avoid bananas and rice cereal, bananas and rice are constipating. And wouldn't you know it, her rice cereal is iron fortified! Iron is another culprit in constipation. On the way home I stopped at the store and got the prune juice and checked for prune baby food. Yay! The brand I prefer (Earth's Best) has mashed prunes! We came home and she loved that flavor too.

My mom had suggested putting a little Vaseline in her rectum, and the doctor suggested a glycerin suppository, to make things slip out a little easier. So I laid Maddie on the bed on a towel and got a q-tip ready and went hunting for the Vaseline. Maddie started straining so I whisked her off to the toilet again..... and man oh man was it ever bad. She was screaming. Shrieking. Just all out bloody murder. It broke my heart and tore me to pieces to see her in so much pain. If I hadn't just been to the doctor to know that she was ok I would have called 9-1-1. Her face turned red and tears ran down her cheeks and she was crying and grunting and screaming.

Here's where my story gets really graphic, so if you're eating you might want to come back later.

A bit of poop started to work it's way out and I wanted so badly to help her feel better. It was totally stuck, so I bent her forward and used toilet paper to see if I could help it work it's way down. All it did was break off. She was still screaming and in so much pain so I took her to the bed where the towel still was and I used the q-tips to take pieces of the stuck poop out of her rectum. I got a teensy bit out but then the poop went back up. Maddie stopped crying and caught her breath and I cleaned up the soiled q-tips. I couldn't find the stupid Vaseline so I grabbed some K-Y jelly (for kegel exercises, don't ask) when a few minutes later she started grunting and straining again. I squirted the k-y in her tushie crack and wet the q-tip and put that in her rectum. Her grunts were getting louder so off to the toilet we went again.

It was as bad as before. The shrieking and screaming and crying... I sat in front of her and hugged her while she sat on the pot. I just held her like that and let her hold on to me while she cried. But wouldn't you know it, after what seemed like eternity, out came a really hard, big, poop. I leaned back to look at her and she grabbed my shoulders and pulled herself closer to me and put her head back on my shoulder.

I have never felt more like a mother.

She had a total of 4 bowel moments this evening, each getting progressively softer and each with less crying. I think she was just sore from the first one. Thank goodness the worst of it is over. She will now be eating oatmeal instead of rice cereal. And thank goodness she likes prunes!

Thanks for letting me share.


Skipper said...

oh that just breaks my heart. i'm glad things are getting better. constipation is never fun. i still have an enema memory believe it or not. HA! sorry for the TMI there but i figured the comments can go along with the story.

Bianka said...

I have an enema memory too from when I was probably about 3! Do we all get constipated when we are babes?

Queen B said...

oh, poor thing :( that is definitely a MOM MOMENT!

Jenn Ann said...

For the record, I never actually saw the picture, just heard about it. However, I have a feeling I won't be disappointed this weekend :)

Jinjer said...

Yay that she finally went! Constipation is the worst ever!

Anonymous said...

Those prunes DO work!! Glad she feels better and that her eyes are once again blue!!
Love you lots!!

Kim Thomas said...

Sydney had a couple of bad days. Jane was here the first time and we actually gave her a liquid glycerin suppository. (Jane gave it to her, I watched) They are called Pedialax and work like a charm. It says for kids 2 and older but I asked the doctore and he said they were fine.

We have used them a couple of times since, Sydney doesnt mind them at all so when she is in distress we give it to her.

Jane: a female given name of English origin said...

Wow, officially the world's longest post

Paula said...

Yes, almost all go thru the constipation when transitioning to solids. Prunes are great helpers! If she does a sippy or bottle at all, so is Caro syrup very diluted with water.

jocey said...

Poor thing, I too experieced something similar a couple of months ago and I'm 27.

Anonymous said...

prunes,benefiber and lots of water helped me with my last bout.

Sarah B. said...

Oh...isn't ist so hard to see your baby in pain. When Ethan first started eating solids he had a nice little poop that wouldn't come out all the way...just sort of came out a little and sat there. He was just screaming...so I tried to pump his litle legs thinking it would push it down or something...my husband thought I was crazy. And than I called the Dr because I could see the pain in his eyes and I couldn't take the screaming and the Dr told me I would have to help it out. I just said "What...help the poop out?" So without too much detail we had a fun night helping the poopy out...what we do for our kids. :)