Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Commencement of solids at 6.5 months

Hi, I am back with some experiences to share, regarding feeding solids to our son. There were initial hiccups, then rejects, insecurities, throw-ups and many more emotions to be handled, when we started giving solids to our son. 

We were, again, poured in with innumerable advice as to when to start solids. Despite lot of pressure from relatives and friends to start early, we started solids for our son not before he was 6.5 months, as he fell ill. Sometimes, they are no longer advice but more of repeated instructions in every conversation, like the FOR LOOP with infinite bounds! Heart in hearts, we know that no one means any harm, just want to give their best input. All we need to do is filter the important information rather than rejecting everything.

Anyway, coming to the main topic, we observed a few signs before we decided on solids.

  • he started attacking the food in our plates, which was not seen until he completed 6 months.
  • he made chewing motion. Initially we thought he has put some object in his mouth, but on inspection found that his mouth was empty. Thus, a sign that he was ready for solids.
  • frequency of desire for breastfeeding increased, guess he was feeling more hungry.
  • he was able to sit upright with back support without losing balance for more than 1 minute. We were not exactly waiting but he somehow was sitting at the same time he was doing the above mentioned things too. Guess, am unsure whether this is a sure sign.
  • he started using his thumb and index finger to pick up things. This started much at the same time that he started sitting. Again not sure if this is to be taken as sure sign.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Six-month old falls from bed

The most horrendous moment for any parent is to hear that "THUD" sound when his or her baby falls from the bed or couch or some high furniture. Worst even to see the poor infant wailing on the floor, I mean it takes a while to get out of the shock.

Our son fell from the bed in his 6th month. Our bed is 1.5 feet from the ground. One day, in his 3rd week, he fell from the bed while attempting to hold something that caught his attention. I was in the other room and suddenly I heard "THUD!!" and my heart sank. I ran and took him in my arms. He was wailing and seeing him I wanted to cry myself. But composed myself, immediately rushed to the washbasin and dabbed some cool water on his head which soothed him a little. He cried for almost 2 minutes, the longest 2 minutes of my life! Anyway, I performed the following checks:
    • Eyes - They were white. When kept his favorite objects(which generally we tell him not to touch) like phone, he was following them. Later on I read on the net that if the eyes get pink or red, immediately rush to the doc.
    • Ears - I played his favorite music, title song of "F.R.I.E.N.D.S." and he quietened for sometime and smiled as he does always. Then did all the noisy actions that he generally does and found that he was following the sounds. It is said that if the baby behaves the same way as earlier, no need to worry.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Common cold to 6-month old

I am posting this for the benefit of all the parents who go through this experience the first time.

Our son fell ill with common cold just after a week he completed 6 months. It was due to weather change.

Symptoms and his general behavior:

  • running nose
  • cough, made a sound like something is stuck in his throat. Guess its the phlegm which he either used to vomit or pass it in stools. 
  • was active and playing normally.
  • no fever
  • At night, his nose got blocked due to which he found it difficult to breathe. 


First we took him to our nearby paediatrician, he prescribed some syrup for cough and nose and nebuliser sessions twice a day for three days. For 10 years, I have been a chronic asthma patient and was on inhalers and nebulisers. Therefore, I was totally against it for a small child who is still in his developmental stages. But considering that it will take a few hours before we could talk to our family homoeo doc and get the medicine we put our son through the ordeal of the nebuliser. And what a way he cried those 10 minutes, my God!!! After that, we never took him back for another session.

Later that evening our homoeo doc prescribed us BC-6, 2 globules with breastmilk three times a day. By the third dose, we could see marked improvement. Beside the medicine, we were giving him home-made chicken soup and tulsi ka kadha or basil-leaves decoction. He enjoyed drinking both and it gave him relief too. 

At nights, we used to elevate his head a little so that he can breathe seamlessly till the nose blockage got alright. Also, we put nasoclear drops in his nose at night before sleeping for further relief. 

Since it was monsoon, there was large variation in temperatures. At times, it will be humid and lead to perspiration and other days it will be very cold. So, we took constant care that he was properly clothed. Always watched out for sweating as sweating can aggravate the problem. So, I used to put a thin cotton undershirt and then hosiery full hands tee shirt and thick pyjamas. If there was sweating I would take off the top layer shirt, powder him a little and put on a fresh one.

Thankfully, we do not have an air-conditioner. Closed rooms are catalysts for common cold, thus, we kept the room well-ventilated. 

CAVEAT - Whoever is taking care of the baby, will invariably catch the cold. If the baby is on breastfeeding, then mother can take care by putting on a scarf on her face while feeding. But, still probability is high that mother will get it. Thus, better if father remains a little away from the baby so that in case mother is unwell, atleast father is healthy enough to take care of both the baby and the mother! We did not anticipate it and both of us caught cold and realised our folly. 

Medicines, soups, aerated rooms, proper clothing, are all the physical aspects of nursing. The most important thing that the baby seeks during this time is lot of cuddling and hugging to provide that warmth and security. 

This was our experience and how we managed it. There are many other ways and will be glad if readers share their experiences too! :)

Friday, August 27, 2010

Developmental stages - 0 to 7 months

Congratulations to you if you have your new-born infant in your arms and best wishes to those who are expecting in a few months.

Allow me to share some of our experiences.
Having delivered the baby, when we saw our child the first time, we had many concerns about his forehead(which was not visible at all), eyes which were partially closed, shape of the head and many similar ones. But then our parents and the doctor assured that there is no need to worry as you will observe lot of changes in the coming months and surely we did. And as time passed, we were surprised ourselves how our son has been evolving mentally and physically. Now he is 6 months old and thus, thought of sharing these developments in this post.

0 Month

Physical development

Shape of the head:

Our son's head gradually started changing its shape from egg-like to more circular. My mom-in-law had gifted us a pillow with a depression in the middle for the head. This probably helped in changing the shape.

Some traditional ideas:

a) Fill a cloth with Rai or mustard seeds and stitch it in the shape of a pillow. This helps in shaping the head. We did not try it as mustard is very heaty and were unsure of its effects.

b) Wound little firmly, a soft cotton cloth around the head in circular shape. Tried this for a while, but our son seemed irritated by it so did not try after a week.

Exposure to light:

Initial 2 weeks, he was aversed to bright light like the light of a tube so we generally used 0-bulb in his room and used dark curtains in his room to reduce the intensity of sun-light. Gradually, my mom used to take him into the balcony in early morning to help get adjusted to brighter light. It helped him.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Postpartum issues

This is in continuation of the child-birth series that I started in july. After my delivery, I understood that I have entered another process. Infact, the transition started as soon as the baby is delivered. It took me 2 weeks to get emotionally attached to my son. I mean it was not like as soon as I saw my baby my heart was flooded with bonding emotions for him. All those F.R.I.E.N.D.S. fans, it was not at all like Rachel crying seeing her daughter!! My complete focus was in understanding each and every task that needs to be done, starting from feeding to cleaning poops to bathing to.......awww.......the list is just endless.

Now when I reflect in the past 6 months, I realise there were so many phases and aspects to be taken care of postpartum. I am discussing my experiences taking each aspect at a time.

Mother's Health

The moment I stood up and started walking, which was 2 hours after my delivery, I felt as if all my abdominal organs are hanging loose and my tummy is falling down and down! It was an awful feeling. Not to mention the excessive bleeding which was causing more discomfort. Anyway, a good 6-hour night sleep helped me come back to this world and realise that I am a mother now.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Pregnancy and associated problems

Pregnancy brings in a mix of happiness and its set of problems too. Of course, with a little bit of precautions many problems can be averted. Based on our experience, the following post lists a few of the problems that needs to be taken care of well within time. Precaution is better than cure!! :)

Gestational Diabetes

I did not encounter this word until I was warned about it by my gynaec, all thanks to my sudden 4-kg weight gain from my 5th to 6th month!! A steady gain of 2 kgs per month is considered healthy gain during pregnancy. Since I had regained my appetite as I entered my 4th month and the 5th I was hogging at food. The food included pizza with extra cheese, puris, McD burgers, McD fries(ummm....yummy they are the best!), pastries, ice-creams, and all the fatty and fried food that you can think of!!! How can I be spared then??

In my next visit, our doc saw the readings and immediately have my diet changed. The hospital dietician obviously, excluded all of the above from the list of healthy food items!!!

According to our scan, the baby had a little bigger head than normal and thus she was worried that we will have a big baby which may cause problems during delivery. And generally big babies are attributed to many factors, one of which is GD. But, she also said that since both my husband and myself are tall, that is a bigger factor of the baby being a little big. Still, why to take chances and asked me to be more careful about GD, specifically, since my dad is a diabetic too.

Coming to GD, it has some serious effects to the baby.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Checklist for hospital-bag when having a baby

Now, about the checklist that we formulated that we may need when we get admitted at the hospital for delivery. It took us lot of search and thought-process and finally we came up with our custom-made list some 3 months before the due date.

Initially the list got all mixed up, so we categorized for ease and it ensures that we do not miss any thing.


a) Case file, which includes all the reports of various tests, ultrasounds etc.
b) Registration papers, in case the hospital gives in advance. Fernandez Hospital(FH) said that its given the same day.
c) Cash - smaller denomination to be used in canteen.
d) Credit/Debit card
e) Health insurance card, if there is cashless facility.
FH does not have cashless facility, but they provide itemised bill at the time of discharge or after a day or two of discharge that is sufficient for reimbursement.
f)  Camera, batteries, battery-charger
g) Additional bag


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Some tips for natural delivery

Having heard so many stories of recovery problems and other side effects of a caesarian, that when I conceived, I had started collecting all the information that would help me to a natural delivery.

Although, it is a known fact, that whatever we do, nick of the moment things may take a different turn and alter what you had planned. Well, in my case, things worked out well and I could avoid a caesarian. Also, a lot depends on the doctor as to how s/he is handling the case.

In earlier days, women were so active and used to do most of the household chores, that they never required these special exercises as they were doing as part of the chores! But with today's sedentary lifestyles, we need to make extra effort to do these exercises if we aspire for a natural delivery.

Following are few things that I used to do to tone my body for a natural delivery and for a healthy post-delivery recovery:

Monday, July 12, 2010

Childbirth - Our Experience - Delivery

......Contd from previous post

So after our check up on 23rd Jan, we were hopeful that something will happen on 24th, my husband's birthday. It would have been great both father and son sharing the same date, guess baby had other plans!! :)

26th Jan:
We went to the hospital. In the scan the abdominal fluid level dropped to 7. Generally if it is more than 8, then one can wait. Since it had dropped and I had no pains yet, Dr. Tara explained us that the labor will be induced artificially. She explained the whole process. There are 8 doses with a gap of 4 hours between each dose. Dose means insertion of a small tablet through the vagina. Within these 32 hours, if I go in labor then there will be another wait of 6-8 hours for the dilation of the cervix to 10 cms. So, we got admitted in the afternoon at 1:30 PM and informed my parents.

After 1 hour of having lunch, the doctor said the first dose will be given. Each dose will precede with a scan of 20 minutes, called as NST.
This generally graphs the contractions and the baby heart rate(BHR). Generally, the contractions and BHR are directly proportional. With contractions if BHR dips then things are a little worrisome.

3 p.m. - first dose inserted and we waited nothing happened. My parents packed their stuff and came to the hospital.

7 p.m. - NST done

7:30 p.m.- 2nd dose

...........This continued the whole night of 26th. At night, Dr. Tara came and met us before leaving and reassured us that everything is going fine. Also, said that we will wait till 28th night and conduct C-Sec if no labor sets in. It was such a relief just hear her voice that I was calmed and waited. My mom's elder sister stays just 15 minutes away from FH, so my parents spent the night at her place. Anyway.....

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Childbirth - Our experience - Pregnancy

In every couple's life, this is the most memorable and cherished time, that is, news of being parents and birth of their child. When we(my husband, Shourya and myself) got to know that we are going to be parents in 9 months' time, our excitement had no ends. It took us a while to sink in the happy news.

Since, we had been trying for sometime, so we had already subscribed to and were pretty familiar with the terms like trimester, morning/evening sickness, labor, contractions, etc etc.

I remember how much comforting it used to be to read narration of other couples. Thus, I thought of sharing our experience through this journey of pregnancy, and delivery with the readers. I hope it does comfort most readers rather than scare or cause anxiety.

Get ready for advice from all nooks and corners and the whole time. At first, due to anxiety, you may like to hear them all and follow the advise blindly. As time passes, you will gain confidence and irritation may set in. Remember, activate your ear filters now so that useful information does not get rejected.

No offence to elders, but the advise they give is generally based on their experience when they were expecting some 25-30 years ago. Thus, always check the validity of the advice and the scientific basis of it. Research over the years have proved many of the beliefs as myths and many scientifically correct.

Any new advice given to us, we would first read about it on various websites, medical sites and then take an informed decision. My mom would add a line right after giving any suggestion, "Go and confirm with your faceless guide!!" Most of what she used to tell me was helpful, only that I wanted to understand why we are doing it, that is all. Thus, do not get scared of anything. If you understand the science behind baby-formation in the womb, then you can be more confident and take rational decisions.

Our Journey starts.......

Friday, July 2, 2010

Kalakand at Home!

Hi to all!

It feels so nice to be back writing a post after a long time. Thus, thought of sharing a recipe of a sweet dish, one of my favorites, Kalakand. Now, why did I choose this sweet?

Well, it so happened that a few days ago, the milk went sour while I put it for boil. So immediately I removed it from the stove and added some lemon juice and allowed further coagulation. After a minute, I filtered the water out and mashed the solid filtrate, which is called as the home-made paneer (HMP). And then decided to prepare Kalakand with it. And that is how it all started.

Before writing this post, I thought of learning the origin of this delicious sweet-meat. It always feels good to know something more about the dish you are eating besides enjoying its taste!


Kalakand is originally from Braj in Uttar Pradesh. In Urdu, it is actually called Qalaqand. "Qand" in Arabic means Sweet. It is a very popular sweet in Northern and Eastern India.