Disclosure: I received product from Orgain for sampling purposes.
Stress runs high during the holidays! When you have a child with special needs, packing, traveling and attending holiday events can be even more stressful. When I’m packing my tubie’s supplies, I will admit to thinking that it would be easier to just stay at home! Here are five tips to avoid that feeling this season:
Stock up. Whether you use formula or a blended diet, it’s best to stock up before the holidays. Purchase an extra case of formula; blend and freeze extra feedings. When last-minute things come up, you won’t need to worry about having enough food for your tubie.
Have a non-perishable, unrefrigerated option. It is way too difficult to bring perishable blended tube feeds with you while traveling. We found that it limited the activities we participated in, and we didn’t want C’s tube to hold any of us back from having fun. There are two excellent options for non-perishable feeds that do not require refrigeration (both require refrigeration once opened). Orgain offers organic shakes for adults and children. If your tubie accepts food orally, he can try to drink some of it before the rest is administered via tube. They’re delicious and offer a great organic alternative to conventional formula. Real Food Blends are individually packaged meals for tube-fed people. With Real Food Blends, I like that C still gets a blended meal like I would make for him at home.
Keep a bag of essentials packed. Syringes, tube extensions, an Orgain shake or Real Food Blends, an extra button just in case. Stash the bag in the front closet and grab it when you’re on the way out the door!
Keep a change of clothes in the car. As we all know, tube feedings occasionally get messy! Avoid disaster by keeping a change of clothes in the car for you and your tubie.
Find a safe room in advance. This one might be a little controversial. You might be thinking, “This is how my kid eats. If anyone is uncomfortable with it, they can just deal.” I totally get that. For my child, we often choose to go in a different room for a tube feeding simply because it also allows him a sensory escape. Feeding in a different room gives him time to recover from the chaos of a holiday gathering. It might provide an escape for your child, too.
I hope you and your tubie have an enjoyable holiday season! What are some of your tubie tips?