Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Smarter than a Scientist: What NOT to Do with a Feeding Tube

On February 1, 2008, our daughter Elly was put on a feeding tube. She has failure-to-thrive, and the feeding tube would help her reach a healthy weight. We thought this would be very temporary. Eighteen months later, she is still on the tube. We have great hopes that she will be off this thing within the next six months. In the meantime, we are finding ways to cope.

A few weeks ago, as summer moved into high gear, we started talking about life with the tube. Elly came up with the idea of writing a list of things NOT to do with a feeding tube. We've been working on it together ever since. Elly decided that it would make a great entry for her "smarter than a scientist" blog post. So here is our list—complete with pictures—about what NOT to do with your feeding tube (if you should ever have one). I hope you'll enjoy reading the list of naughty acts as much as we enjoyed imagining them. As we chose the pictures for this post, Elly said to me: "It's fun to work on projects together." I agree.

What NOT to Do with a Feeding Tube
by Elly and her mom

1. Mow the lawn (see photo above).
2. Jump off the sofa.
3. Jump off your mom or dad who is on the sofa.
4. Be wild.
5. Run around your brother, wrapping him in the feeding tube.
6. Play jump rope with your feeding tube!
7. Knit your feeding tube into a scarf.
8. Pull your feeding tube like taffy!
9. Squeeze the bag like a tube of toothpaste.
10. Detach it and drink out of it.
11. Detach it and make your brother drink out of it.
12. Ride your scooter with it attached.
13. Tease the bees with the Pediasure. (They'll chase you!)
14. Ride your bike with your feeding tube attached.
15. Use it as a glasses case for your mother's glasses.
16. String your brother's guitar.
17. Cut it up and cook it. (Eek!)
18. Use it as a flotation device.
19. Wear it as a necklace.
20. Use it as a pillow.
21. Wear it as a headband.
22. Eat the tube (or the handle)!
The End!


  1. Awesome list. Great spirit! Way to go!
    This begs the question, "Can one swim with a feeding tube?"

  2. Elly, you look terrific! I think that feeding tube must be doing its thing. And next summer, no excuse for not mowing the lawn.

    Meantime, how about a list of what TO do with a feeding tube? I'll bet you're doing all sorts of amazing mind-boggling blogging.

  3. hahaha. i enjoyed the jump rope. i shall try it soon...

    elly you look really pretty. hope you can live without the tube soon. it would be nice if you can water ski using that darn thing.

  4. Thanks for all the great comments! We love them!

    --Rochelle & Elly