Thursday, August 22, 2013

Abolish Needles!

When I was a kid, shots terrified me. My one and only memory of getting shots as a child was when I was four or five. We were living in Houston at the time, and I remember my mom taking me and then hiding under a table when they called my name. I'm pretty sure they ended up having to call for me a couple of times, because my mother would try to coax me into going in each time and then fail. Finally, I don't remember how, I ended up in the back were I was traumatized by a nurse sticking me with various needles and then told to stop screaming because I was scaring another, older girl who was there to get shots as well. My mother tells me the nurse had to pin me down with her legs in order to get a clear shot at my thighs and arms, and that afterwards I got pretty sick... both of which probably contributed to the fact that I didn't receive another shot (no, not even of the flu variety) until I was 23 years old, eight months pregnant, and worried that if I didn't get the TDaP vaccine my baby would get whooping cough and die.

Of course now that I'm older I try to act tough. When I was 18 I donated blood at a school event (and then wandered around in a lethargic, zombie like state which I have very little memory of for about three hours). Once I got pregnant they drew blood several times to check blood cell counts and sugar levels and whatever else sorts of thing they use pregnant blood for. And then, when I was in the hospital they gave me an IV which hurt like a son of a going in, but I promptly forgot about once the contractions began. So yeah, I thought I'd gotten over the needle thing and discovered that shots are no big thang.

Until today.

I don't know if you've ever had a little person grow inside of you and then pushed, or had them cut out, of your body... but you get kind of attached. You want them to be comfortable, happy, well adjusted. So you take them to the pediatrician, where they weigh and measure your little person (13 pounds 4 ounces, and 23 1/2 inches; 95th and 90th percentiles respectively) then talk to you about feeding and sleep schedules and developmental mile-stones and baby acne. And then, they send in a nurse to give your precious little one her vaccines, because you want her to be healthy and not get Polio or Rotovirus or any number of awful diseases.

Fun fact, babies generally do not like swallowing cold, thick substances that are not breastmilk and probably taste awful. They will cough and splutter and cry until they are forced to swallow. But that's not even the worst part. Turns out babies also don't like sharp, pointy needles jabbed into their chubby little thighs. In fact, they hate it. They scream and scream and scream and their faces turn so red its almost purple and before you know it, you're crying too because it's obvious your tiny baby is in pain and all you can do is hold her arms down to keep them from flailing and it is bad, bad, bad.

So needles, not my favorite thing. I kind of wish i could abolish them forever. Because now I've got a fussy little baby with tweety bird bandaids on her chubby chubby thighs and she needs snuggles and probably some tylenol because she feels now so awesome. Poor thing.

Now here are two pictures. The first is a before picture from the doctors office, and the second is just a picture I took last night, because I couldn't bear to take an after shot while I was rocking her and crying all alone with my sniffling baby in the empty office room this morning.

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