E is doing much better, if you can call not napping, routinely choking but not coughing for as long, and struggling through many of the wee hours of the morning with gas/pooping issues. My current goal is to get this child to his 6 month birthday, and that seems like a lofty goal indeed right now.
Poor kid: he wants to be a sleeper, but he is being thwarted at every turn, by his confounded reflux, by a noisy and disruptive older brother, by a well-meaning mother who is having problems telling general normal night noises from those noises preceding death and is erring on the side of caution, by the catch 22 of his bed placement (he would be better able to sleep in his own room on the other side of the house, far away from his brother's domain, but then he would be too far away for meaningful interventions when he chokes, which he still does, at least once and often more times a night).
He is putting on the pounds, however, which seems to be the only marker any medical professional cares about. Weight = health. So his ever-increasing cheeks and his double chin and his huge tummy are good signs for them and us, I suppose.
Meanwhile, J has come into his own. A character on some TV show said recently of her toddler she hadn't seen in months (this is TV after all) "Look at him; he's 15!" Some days I feel the same way about J. All of the sudden, he's this clever, snarky, talkative kid with all sorts of opinions. Some moments he seems like a quirky little old man, and then in the next moment he collapses in a fit of frustrated tears because he can't string together the monkeys in his barrel quickly enough. The emotional storms alternate with hilarious happenings on an almost minute by minute basis--wait, he IS 15!