The last six weeks have been a blur. It turned out that Orion is a gas factory, due mostly to the fact that he takes great big gulps of air when he eats. It doesn't matter if we use the cheap bottles with the old school vinyl nipples or the swanky BPA Free ones with a zillion parts. (Side note...why would anyone with a new baby accept a feeding system that requires each bottle to come with its own teeny bottle brush). I've come to understand that pretty much every bottle on the market right now is great for keeping air bubbles out of the milk, but with only two shapes of nipples out there nothing can keep my kid from swallowing great gluggling gulps of air every time he comes up to breathe.
It turns out that a bunch of air in a baby's tummy tends to create reflux. We learned all of this last Saturday night when we ended up at the ER at 1am begging for someone to fix our screaming baby. We'd gotten very little sleep for a week and his problem was getting progressively worse. An ultrasound and an x-ray showed huge pockets of air in Orion's intestines, which was a relief in some ways. First, we were vindicated in that, duh, you'd scream too with a belly ache that bad. Second, we got to make everyone in the ER to look at the screen so they would believe us that no, he's not screaming because we abuse him thankyouverymuch.
We dragged ass home with a prescription for Zantac and instructions to double the amount of Mylicon Orion gets. After a week of the new routine (and a switch to stage 2 nipples) things finally seem to be getting better. I did screw up the routine a few days ago by trying to introduce some formula. Within 24 hours we figured out that was a bad idea and went back to our regular "all breast milk, all the time" programming.
Orion still wakes up every three hours at night, which sucks. However now he's waking up mostly happy. He's passing his gas (even though there is still straining involved) and pooping regularly again. I hope this new, happier baby is the one we get to keep because Beelzebabe wasn't making a lot of friends at 3am.