newborn with cannula

The Sensory Seeker – In the Beginning

I am not sure at what point, if there is a point, our son The Sensory Seeker started to have Sensory Processing Disorder. I am not sure if anything caused or triggered it or if it is something that has just always been there. But I thought I would try to share some of his early experiences to see if anyone can identify with it – and just so you can get to know him better.

The Birth of The Sensory Seeker

The Sensory Seeker was born at 35 weeks Gestation with just gas and air using Wrigley’s forceps and a whooping 7lb 1 oz. He was also rather long and I believe that the hospital just thought that the dates were wrong. I had had contractions from around 31 weeks but told to get bed rest. I have a needle phobia so at no point did I have the steroid injections. I was also breast feeding my toddler and once this happened I had to try to really limit his feeds. In fact it was the middle of the night when he came in for a feed that my waters started to break. First a trickle but then there was no doubt as they poured out. We went to the hospital and The Sensory Seeker was born a few short hours later. Born at five thirty in the evening we were both discharged from the hospital the next morning.Newborn Sensory Seeker

The Sensory Seeker’s Weight Loss

At home The Sensory Seeker was feeding fine, but was very sleepy. I had been given no information on him coming before the 37 week full-time dates and felt that something was not right. By day 3 when the midwife came to check that he hadn’t lost more than 10% of his birth 3 he’d actually lost 13% (down to 6lb 3ozs) and we had to go straight back to the hospital. Despite constant badgering to formula feed my son I expressed my milk and fed him by first syringe and then cup – which meant I had very little sleep. We did get sent home at one point but it wasn’t long before the weight gain wasn’t satisfactory enough we were sent back in. He was put on the Billy bed (UV light) and was treated for jaundice. His blood sugar levels weren’t right either but they were the opposite way they were checking for so apparently it was ok, I later learnt that his blood sugar levels were an indication of an infection but everyone was too hung up on the fact that I was tandem uv treatment

His weight continued to stay low and his jaundice worsened so they added a top to the billy bed which meant that he had to have his eyes covered. It was really hard not to just be able to cuddle my sick baby too, with the only time I was able to touch him was when he was feeding – this was every 3 hours by cup. He made a tiny bit of progress and was able to move to first a normal cot, and then a side-cot attached to my bed. The whole time I was still expressing, cup feeding and feeding my other son when he came to visit. His bilirubin levels then reached an acceptable level and we were able to go back home.

The Sensory Seeker’s Infection

And then it happened. One day when he was 3 weeks old and I went to change his nappy there was just this awful puss oozing out of his belly!! Luckily there was a clinic running across the road and the midwife saw us straight away who said to take him straight to the hospital. No-one really said anything to me but a cannula was put into my tiny baby’s arm immediately – and he was pumped up with 3 different types of antibiotics. We were sent to another hospital and there he continued the IV antibiotics and returned back to his birth weight at last. His weight has been fine ever since.newborn with cannula

I am not sure if these early experiences have been the cause of his sensory issues or whether he would have had them anyway. But I do think it shows that from the off he has always been a fighter. A strong little man.

10 thoughts on “The Sensory Seeker – In the Beginning

  1. Those first hours, weeks, months are so fraught. They are so tiny and vulnerable but you both showed strength and resilience. I should record my children’s early days as I am sure they would like to look over them in years to come.

  2. Gosh he really does sound like a fighter. And it sounds like more research needs to be done around this condition so that all of us a better understanding. That way we can all play our part in supporting families we meet

  3. What a start for you all. It brought back memories for me as I struggled to feed my last baby at first after a rough start. They are much tougher than we think though aren’t they? Your little one does indeed sound like a fighter. x

  4. Sometimes you just can’t understand why/how something happened. And the medical experts can’t tell us. That can be so frustrating

  5. Oh my goodness Joy, how scary to find his belly oozing pus, it is awful when the medical professionals miss something, especially when it is with our children. What an amazing weight he was at birth, my 41 week was only 5oz different. Mich x

  6. The first few days are so hectic and to be honest, nobody really knows. I had a very similar experience with my first born. He had severe jaundice and was under uv lamps. We eventually got to take him home but then he too got pus from his umbilical cord and we went through the same rigmarole.
    For this reason, I would say that maybe the sensory issues were already there?
    Whatever the case, he’s a fighter like you say.

  7. Lovely photos.
    Both mine were premature & it was such a scary time, but now they are 21 & 14 and, although they have their difficulties, they are doing OK.

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