Saturday, May 22, 2010

Eames's Drinking Problem

Eames has a drinking problem.

And it goes a little something like this: For his 12 month check up, Eames weighed in at about 18 1/2 pounds, which puts him in the fourth percentile. His height was slightly better at the 17th percentile (and let's not talk about that Luedtke head which is solidly in the 68th--basically, he's lollipop shaped). The doctor assumed that his increased activity and my (probably) decreased milk supply is mostly to blame, so she suggested making sure he gets about 16 (I think) ounces of soy milk a day to make up for the nutrients and vitamins he's no longer getting from me. This suggestion makes sense. Most kids switch to regular milk at this time and soy milk is the highest protein/fat/calorie vegan option out there.

But, Eames doesn't like soy milk. And, it's not just soy milk. Eames won't drink anything but water (and Keflex, which he begged for when he had to take it...mmmmm, tropical-flavored anitbiotics).

Let me provide a little perspective: Eames is an eating machine. He eats all day and he'll eat just about anything you give him. He's enjoyed my tofu egg salad which features a healthy amount of raw onions, tarragon, and chives. He likes a good curry and was particularly happy to polish off the coconut black-eyed pea curry I made last week. He likes black beans and soyrizo and salsa. I could go on. Vegans, at least these ones, eat an amazing variety of food that most adults look askance at and Eames is happy to eat them all.
Exhibit A: Tempeh bacon, rice cheese, and avocado on rye (deconstructed)

The only thing he is picky about is liquid. He doesn't like juice. Apple, orange, and carrot have all gotten spit out. And I even made them fresh. Juiced just seconds prior. He made this face:
Exhibit B: Dark Cherry Passion Tea Lemonade

Vanilla soy milk ended up on the front of his shirt, as did the chocolate variety. And I think the chocolate is still there. As you can see, tea gets a negative reaction too--and it tastes exactly like Kool-Aid. Up to this point, it's been breastmilk and water all the way. And, seriously, I'm not complaining. I know many parents struggle to get kids to drink water and a lot of adults have trouble with it too (looking at you, Amy).

While we were in California, however, we had a breakthrough. We went to an organic deli run by a Christian cult. They happened to have banana milk on the menu, so I order one made with soy thinking it was worth a shot. Lo and behold, he drank it as well as he could considering that the straw was about an inch wide. Of course, he then proceeded to pull the straw out of the cup, spilling banana soy milk across the table, and waving the straw rapidly back and forth which sprayed banana soy milk all over the table and most of us sitting at it. When I tried to clean up the mess, he grabbed the paper from beneath my sandwich and waved it about, until I grabbed it and moved on to the salt and pepper, sprinkling it liberally across the table. But, that's really another blog...

Anyway, I made him some banana soy milk at home this morning. And. He. Liked. It. I blended on large banana, one cup of soy milk, and a quarter cup of coconut kefir together and served it to him in his tupperware juicebox. He drank about 12 ounces of the stuff over the course of the day. On top of that, I ordered a small unsweetened iced green tea from Starbucks and he drank the whole thing (don't even give me guff about Starbucks...I've struggled to be ok with patronizing the place, but the reality is that it reminds me of home and I like that).
Victory: Eames not only drinks it, he HUGS it.

Yes, Eames is officially on the wagon--the banana soymilk bandwagon. I doubt I'll be able to get him to drink however many ounces the doctor suggested, but knowing that he's drinking fortified soymilk makes me feel a little less guilty about the fact that I often forget to give him his vitamins.

I also suspect that this will not cause him to suddenly grow into a regular-sized toddler--you know, one who isn't still rocking 6 month old's clothes. But, that's ok, because he's out-running and -climbing toddlers twice his size.

And good things come in small packages.


veganmomma said...

My boy still doesn't like to drink much and he is 3 now (still nursing a few times a day). He is BIG so we never had that conversation with our doc., but it sounds like you are feeding him super well, so I wouldn't worry. Probably best his calories come from food rather than soy milk anyway. Banana milk sounds good though. Rowan will drink most smoothies, but no juice or milk subs.

thedalyn said...

Hi veganmomma! I've been wondering what became of you. Rowan is still huge, huh? I agree that I'd much rather have his calories come from food, especially since soymilk can be tough to digest. It's the only soy product I occasionally have trouble with, but only if I drink to much. Unfortunately, Eames has practically weaned himself. We're down to just twice a day--once at bedtime and once at 4am. And he's less and less interested in that as well. So, banana soymilk it is for now.