Visits to the pediatrician have been mostly happy events providing eagerly-awaited updates on the baby’s growing weight and length. Until today.
Today, Michael got his first immunization shots. And I think I knew on one level that we were due for shots during this visit but didn’t think they would be such a big deal.
Oh. It was a big deal. My poor baby.
The visit started out as usual — a nurse checked Michael for his temperature, height, weight, head circumference as usual. Then the doctor came in to check Michael’s arms and legs, listen to his heartbeat and feel his soft spot. The doctor even proclaimed that Michael would probably be an early walker, because of the way he liked to keep his feet flat rather than pointed down.
Then he sent the nurse in with the shots. First immunization was a sweet liquid Michael had to suck down. The nurse then swabbed Michael’s legs down. She warned my husband…..”OK, daddy. Get ready.” The first needle went into the right thigh, and Michael screwed up his face, instantly turned red and let out a scream. I had to fight an urge to sweep my red-faced baby off the table.
Its a good thing my husband was the parent assisting the nurse, because I think I would have said, “no wait! Stop!” As it was, I think I unconsciously started pacing the tiny room. But the nurse knew what she was doing, and as Michael caught his breath for what turned out to be a silent scream, the next two needles went into his left thigh quickly and in no time, the nurse had round bandages on each of the puncture sites.
We took some time to comfort him before leaving the doctor’s office, and he was asleep by the time we walked out into the hall. About an hour later, he had no trouble feeding, but seems his legs are still tender, and he cried when the bandages (which was accidentally stuck onto his diaper) on one leg came off when I changed him. He’s also complaining here and there, but he seems to be OK.
But mommy still seems a little traumatized.