Hunter had to get his first shots today.
It may not be too popular, but I practiced delayed vaccination and these were his first shots. It was a hard decision to make but I had to do what I really thought was right, even if not too many people agreed with me.
The doctor’s trip was quite comical. He was scared stiff about getting his shots, thanks to a special someone who so lovingly tortured him about it for two weeks. While getting dressed and seeing Hunter’s distraught composure, I realized that this was not just a shot session but a well child check-up. Which, I knew, meant they would not only be checking his weight and blood pressure but his physical and intellectual development as well. Great, I’m thinking. My kid is going to be scared stiff and they are going to think he’s a mute and on the social level of a shy two-year-old.
So, I resorted to bribery.
I told him that the doctor was going to ask him a lot of questions [fill in examples] and that if he was really good and really nice, we would wait for another day to do the shots (I thought we would be going to the vaccine clinic, which is walk-in).
He was more than a little bit relieved. And, he was an angel.
He talked as openly to the doctor as he does to me. He told her how old he was and even volunteered his birthday, answered every question, commented on the astronaut pictures on the wall, and even confessed that one time he rode his bike without his helmet. The doctor left saying how cute and sweet he was.
Amazing what a little bribery can do, isn’t it?
Funny thing, though, is that the doctor said we would be doing his vaccines right there, in the room. She left, and I asked Hunter about it (I wasn’t going to do them today unless he agreed, since I gave him my word). But strangely enough, he was fine with it, since I told him they would only be doing a few since he was so good.
Comical part two? My brave little boy got right up on the examination table and smiled at me from across the room, and after they gave him the first two shots (simultaneously) he started laughing. Yes, laughing. See, I said. That didn’t hurt too much! Just a little pinch, like I told you!
Still laughing triumphantly, they went in for round two. Suddenly, the smile was gone and he looked at me in shock and disbelief. Not moving or making a sound, his jaw trembled and his eyes got watery. It was more of a look of heartbreak coupled with offense than of pain.
Smart nurses, I thought. Saving the painful ones for last. I still felt bad for the kid.
He started crying, ever so pitifully. But it was definitely not the hysterical, arm-flailing, head-jerking, loud-screaming mess I envisioned a few days ago (maybe my visions were a little overly-dramatic but, he was scared!)
And thus ended our hospital expedition, that and a few extra-large stickers to make the pain feel better. We’re double-dosing on vitamins, eliminating sugar and keeping iboprophen close by to help with the typical side effects. He is very healthy, very, very rarely gets sick, and has a strong immune system to handle the strain. So, with that and a little prayer, I’m not too worried.
“An evil disease, say they, cleaveth fast unto him: and now that he lieth he shall rise up no more.”
Hunter is 4 years, 9 months old