Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Not My Finest Moment

When I took Cubby to the doctor for his before-school physical last week, he had to get some vaccinations. Unfortunately, one of them was the tetanus one, which goes right into the muscle and hurts like hell. And even more unfortunately, they were out of the chicken pox vaccine and we had to go back when they had received the new shipment of the vaccine.

Our appointment for that vaccine was this morning, so Cubby has had five days to brood about getting another shot. He brought it up periodically, with a dramatic little shudder and an, "Oh noooo! Not another shoooooooot!"

He does tend towards the dramatic, so I didn't pay too much attention to it. I should have, though, because when we got to the doctor and he was sitting on the table with the nurse at the ready with the needle, he flipped. right. out.

I'm talking screaming, crying, writhing, totally out of his head flipped out. I tried talking to him, reasoning with him, making him look at me, telling him about when I got chicken pox. The nurse tried talking to him, reasoning with him, telling him how sick chicken pox could make him. He was beyond listening to anyone, though.

Meanwhile, I had Jack down on the floor of the exam room while I held onto Cubby, with Charlie next to Jack, and I did not have the time to spend talking Cubby down off this particular unreasonable ledge. And we sure as hell were not going to be coming back another time with all three children in tow.

So I sat on a chair and pinned him in my lap while the nurse gave him the shot.

He was fine as soon as the needle went in. It was just the anticipation, I guess. I felt really terrible about how it all went down, and I thought maybe I should have prepared him better, or taken his anxiety more seriously, or something.

But then I thought that he had to have that shot to go to school and I had two other small children to deal with at the same time, so the pinning him down option still seems like the best way to go. Because in the end, I'm just that cold-hearted, I guess.

Let's hope the flu shot in October isn't so fraught with drama, however.


tu mere said...

I would not have been surprised if you were talking about Charlie, not Cubby. Cubby's the rational one, so who would have thunk! Postponing would have been even worse, so you were absolutely spot on just getting it done and over with. May be, since this shot wasn't that bad, you will have less trauma next time around, but who knows. However, I'll bet Charlie won't forget what transpired. Oh, the joy of parenthood.

Drew @ How To Cook Like Your Grandmother said...

My mother told me that once when I was about his age and needed a shot, they had to put me in a straitjacket, and it still took two nurses and my mother to hold me still enough that the doc could give me the shot.

I do occasionally wonder if straitjackets are one of those things it used to be normal for doctors to have, like leeches.

sheila said...

I think some kids feel pain more intensely than others. Then you add in the fear factor and it's even worse.

I remember being the kid that thought it was no big deal while all the other kids waiting in line at a public health vaccine clinic sobbed and cried. Seemed to me a bee sting hurt much more and being a farm kid I'd had more than one incident of multiple bee stings.

They gave lollipops then too! That was reward enough for me. I would have gone for a shot everyday for one of those, boy was I a sucker.

Being a Mom is tough, sometimes you just have to let them scream for their own good.

Anonymous said...

I would do the same thing - and feel minimal guilt. He was probably hamming it up for his audience in part, maybe a little extra drama with the newness of school coming up, but he needed to cope with it.
Sometimes you just need to get things done. And that's that.
You're doing great - no worries.

Anonymous said...

I suspect that if you spend a quiet moment explaining to Cubby the choice you had to make, why you made it, and your mixed feeling about that choice, he will accept it nicely. Perhaps you have already had a chance to do this. He seems to be a reasonable little guy most of the time. Mary in MN

Anonymous said...

"Cold-hearted" would never be a term that describes you. Oh my goodness, no.

Being a little kid is difficult for so very many reasons. Cubby might be very sensitive to pain; with time, I imagine he will be able to cope a bit better. In the meantime, I imagine extra hugs will help both of you!

Daisy said...

You were right to simply pin him. He was beyond logic at that moment, so any talking and reasoning was impossible. This was a meltdown, not a tantrum. Meltdowns happen when a kid (or adult!) simply can't cope anymore.

flask said...

sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do.

i would like tell you that i have never in my adult life needed to be restrained by more than one adult while getting a shot that we all knew was going to hurt like hell.

i would like to tell you that.

i would be lying.

truth: i said "you better be prepared to hold me down because when that goes in, i am going up".

they were very nice about it.