September 30, 2013

I am sitting here with hot tears just rolling down my face.  Reagan started foods…and it is really exciting. But my baby eating foods is not like your baby eating foods.

Reagan’s dietician Sandy gave us menus to work with as Reagan starts food…we have a certain amount of Lysine Reagan can have a day. During the last visit, Sandy gave us four menus to work with as we’ve started to add in foods. We can choose from one of these menus every day…this food is in addition to the 29 oz. of formula she’s currently having every day.

  1. 16 grams rice cereal & 53 grams of sweet potatoes
  2. 19 grams of rice cereal & 71 grams of pears
  3. 16 grams of rice cereal & 53 grams of squash
  4. 17 grams of rice cereal & 71 grams of peaches

In these recipes Sandy’s figured out the grams of protein in each menu (about 1.7) and the milligrams of Lysine (btw 76-78).


There’s a math formula to figure that out…oh joy. Have I mentioned before that I have math anxiety…it’s a real thing, if you don’t believe me, refer to paragraph one.

So in order to figure out a daily menu for Reagan, here’s what’s involved:

Protein amount (in grams)
x % of Lysine = (I have no idea what this equals)

*Side note, food companies don’t tell you the Lysine content in anything…you have to figure it out…there’s a separate sheet for that to refer to. Yay! More numbers!

Take the equals amount and multiply (x) 1000 = (I have no idea what this equals)

DIVIDE!! (I don’t even know where the division signal is on the keyboard)
= mg of lysine / gram of food. And this is what we are trying to figure out every day.

Are you thoroughly lost yet? Yeah, now you know why I’m in tears.


But then again…


In order to be helpful, Rob found a spreadsheet online from a textbook that we now own, which has every single baby food available.  So now, we have all the baby food catalogued in Excel…It’s 300 rows long and eight columns wide. Rob is so good he even did nine tabs of the different brands. In the spreadsheet there’s the name of the food, how much is in a container, jar, pouch or tablespoon, followed by how much that container, jar, pouch or tablespoon weighs, in grams, and then followed by the gram count of protein.

yes! we won...we found a cheat sheet. But, don't get too excited...

yes! we won…we found a cheat sheet.                  But, don’t get too excited…

Then…there’s a column for “Known mg Lysine/gram of food” which is blank for 300 rows. Yeah…that’s 300 math problems for something I don’t understand…and have been trying to understand for days.  And here come the tears again…


Sure, it’s probably really easy for anyone else out there who doesn’t have math anxiety or someone who got through high school algebra II with a C or better…not someone like me who failed that class and had to make it up in summer school. I’m also the girl who cried in college as I walked out of finite math (yes, finite math, apparently it’s supposed to be easy). I opted to take college algebra at community college b/c they offered extra credit for going to the math lab. I spent five to ten hours every week in the math lab, b/c 1) I needed it and 2) I needed it!

This math formula that I am now charged with knowing like the back of my hand in order to figure out what Reagan can eat on a daily basis, is stressing me out just a bit (could you tell from the animated gifs in this post?)…

I don’t know how to do the math, my mind just doesn’t work this way…not to mention I just have so many awful memories of math class and how stupid I felt or was made to feel.

At our last appointment at Nemours, I was transported back to math class.  I really tried hard to pay attention, but I was lost.  As our dietician explained everything to us, Rob instantly comprehended what she was saying and told me he’d explain it to me. But I really don’t know if he fully understood my aversion to math. My eyes literally started to glaze over as I watched Sandy and Rob do these math problems together…it was so simple for them…and I just thought, “How am I ever going to understand this and be able to do this?”

And…now I’m sobbing.


When I took my last math class 13 years ago that was it for me…there was no more math in my future. Heck, I narrowed down the major I chose based on how much math was required! So needless to say, I was so glad to be done with figuring out equations for the rest of my life. In real estate, calculating your mortgage payment, or how much a seller will walk away with is easy to me…no big deal. But these crazy solve for “X” equations (all 300 of them) is too much for my brain to take.

We go to Nemours tomorrow…we were supposed to come up with 4-6 menus of 125mg of Lysine in them…I was going to try and do that today…but instead I got so frustrated and have been crying uncontrollably ever since. I don’t have any menus. Rob promises he will help me…and I know he will. I joke that he’ll spend five years explaining this and then when I finally get it, Reagan will be going to school…he told me he’d explain it for the rest of his life if he has to (what a good and patient man). I am so blessed to have a dedicated husband, who’s also very good at math b/c it’s not easy to explain math to someone like this…wish us luck!


comments +

  1. Katie

    September 30th, 2013 at 11:55 pm

    Hey Anne-Marie,
    I’m so sorry – that sounds incredibly stressful and frustrating, and I like math! :/ It sounds like Rob has got things figured out, but in case you ever want more help, I have a friend who is a college math tutor…. He used to teach college math. So, I could send him this link or anything else and ask him for some help if you want it 🙂 Hang in there! God won’t give you more than you can handle. As you probably are asking, I still ask God, are you sure this isn’t more than I can handle??? I think it is more than I can handle. We’ll be praying for you and this new daunting challenge.

  2. Anne-Marie Wurzel

    October 1st, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Thanks Katie! You are so sweet…Rob seems to really have this under control and I’m glad he’s willing/able to explain it to me, and deal with my panic freak outs due to numbers… 🙂

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