Wednesday, August 31, 2011

It's been awhile....I guess I've been busy raising a beautiful baby

It was one year ago August 30th since we found out Paige would be a girl, healthy and bjavascript:void(0)orn with a right unilateral cleft lip.  This logo was one of the first images I associated with joining the Cleft Family.  September truly was my personal Craniofacial Acceptance month as I processed what this would mean for my baby.  I also needed the support of my faith, family, friends and the Cleft Lip/Cleft Palate board on This group has meant soooo much to me and really helped me through the different things we had to go through. Thank you all! I hope that our experience here can be helpful for others who have the first year to get through.  You can do will all get better...and each part comes one thing at a time. You too will look back a year after finding out and wonder.

Here is this last year in review:

The minute we saw her she was perfect! So many worries melted away.  The fact that she had only an incomplete cleft was a surprise but so was her complete cleft palate.
Breastfeeding didn't work for us as hard as I tried and hoped.  I have been exclusively pumping for almost 8 months and hope to go to at least a year.  We tried the haberman, pigeon and finally just a regular nipple with a cross cut. After her lip surgery she didn't even need to have the nipple cut because she figured out her own way of bending the nipple against her bottom lip to get the nipple to squirt out into her mouth.

At two month she had tubes put in because she hadn't passed her hearing tests due to fluid behind her eardrums they could not drain due to her palate.
These were the first and last days of enjoying her wide smile.  I miss it...

At three months she had her lip/nose repaired.  The pics below was our first time seeing her new face and trying to feed her after she woke up from anesthesia.

A cupid's bow...something so many take for granted.
First smile post surgery...

Learning to tape nose stents and no-no's was a learning process...
At 4 months with out nose stents for a day for Easter.

We got better at taping them using the tabs cut in half from clear rite aid bandaids.

Wore nose stents until six and half months when she decided to swallow them and poop them out

Now she is 7 months, almost 8 and enjoying NO nose stents, solid foods, crawling, pulling up and saying "ma ma ma"! Basically just being a happy baby who has food come out her right nostril from time to time. Her palate surgery will be in late Oct. or early Nov.  Not looking forward to it but looking forward to getting through it and returning to just regular baby things and maybe a little speach therapy. 
Some tears from time to time....

She is very proud of pulling up!

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