Well, once again, me trying to be Supermom and handle situations all by myself proved to provide yet another embarrassing/humorous story for the amusement of others. This week’s “insane moment” takes place at the Pediatrician’s office. Please join me in reliving the excitement…….
We arrived at the office a few minutes early and we piled out of the car and made our way up to the front desk. Surprisingly, the waiting room was fairly empty! We signed in and within 5 minutes we were already headed back to our room! But, sadly, that was to be the end of our good luck during that visit. Now, I love our pediatrician and the nurses there are usually so nice and friendly. However, it appears that since our last visit, the office has acquired my great-grandmother’s nurse. You know, the nurses that have the sparkling personality to match those of their portraits from the early 1900’s? I could tell immediately that this visit was going to be super fun.
She barked out that I should strip the baby down to his diaper while she was going to steal my older son to start his measurements down the hall. I quickly took the clothes off the baby and hurried down the hall to make sure she hadn’t accidentally eaten my child in my absence. She had not, but she still refused to crack a smile, even when my precious baby clapped his hands and cheesed at her (I HAVE NEVER MET A PERSON THAT DOESN’T SMILE AT THIS ACTION FROM A CUTE BABY!). She took all the measurements and did the usual tests on both kids with the high speed velocity of a tortoise – STILL not a smile to be seen. After all of that, we hurried back to the safety of our little room where we waited, and waited, and waited some more to see the pediatrician.
Sensing that the room was too quiet, the kids began arguing with each other and talking loudly while the baby squealed because I wasn’t letting him crawl around on the dirty ground. What felt like an hour later (though it was probably more like 20 minutes in reality), the doctor finally came in. She checked out the boys and said they both looked great. I discussed a concern I had and she calmed my fears (LOVE HER). Then she asked about flu shots and I told her that I did want each child to have one while we were already there so she said she would have the nurse pull my daughter’s chart out to add to our pile and bring the shots in shortly. Fantastic! Let’s get this show on the road!
Another hour later (again, probably just 20 minutes but time does not fly by with 3 crazy kids in an unpadded cell), after numerous fights over who was going to get their shot first – should we go by age? should the girl go first because that’s what people have told my 6-year-old? should mom just bite the bullet and take everyone’s shot for them? etc., – the door opened and the 90-year-old nurse came in. How lucky were we?! But, did I panic? No, I did not. I had the squirmy baby in my arms and I quickly made the executive decision that my oldest should man-up and show the other two how shots are done. He was not pleased about this decision, but he went along with it without too much fussing, thank God!
My little politician was still trying to negotiate the shot deal with the nurse when she turned to look at me menacingly and said, “you’re going to have to hold his arms while I do this”. Dear Lord! I had wisely remembered to bring in an umbrella stroller just in case so I quickly wrangled the baby back into it. Meanwhile, my daughter has started crying (why, you ask? Who knows since she was just sitting on the chair doing nothing at that point. I think she was just getting into character for her performance of a psychotic breakdown), my baby is trying to get back out of the stroller since there is no shoulder harness (leaving me to hold him in with one foot while balancing on the other), and my son is glaring at me for holding his arms down. Luckily, he only cried for a second and then hopped off the table, grateful to be done and ready to help me with the other two.
My feisty and overly dramatic daughter had no intention of giving into the shot without a fight. Once she realized that it was now her turn, she went from crying crocodile tears to screaming as though someone was trying to murder her (and all this before she was even on the table). Fantastic. I don’t know how kids do it, but they can make their bodies limp when they don’t want to be picked up and it feels like they weigh 200 pounds! That’s what my tiny, 33 lb. daughter did right then. As I threw her up on the table while still holding my screaming baby in the umbrella stroller with one leg, I wondered what the people in the waiting room were thinking. It sounded like the soundtrack from a horror movie at that moment and it was not about to get any better.
My little actress got the shot in her leg and kept screaming, even after it was over. Through the screams, she managed to tell the nurse in an accusing tone that she had dared to only pull her pants up halfway! Like, are you kidding me? You poke me with a needle and don’t even finish pulling my pants up?! (Did I mention she was dramatic?) She then insisted that she couldn’t possibly walk after a flu shot so she carefully climbed into the stroller to await the torture of her next brother.
Now, the baby was there for his 1-year-old checkup which involves 4 shots. This is where the nurses are usually fantastic because they can give 4 shots and place 4 band aids on the little pokes in his legs in less than 5 seconds. Nurse Cranky Pants took over a minute to do all the shots while I had to hold the baby down. So, we’re now back to 2 screamers (yes, my daughter is still screaming).
Everyone had calmed down by the time the baby was dressed again, but my dear girl refused to vacate the stroller because she would most certainly collapse if she tried to walk after her one flu shot so I ended up holding the baby on one hip with my elbow, while holding my son’s hand with my wrist and trying to push my daughter in the stroller with the other hand. As we walked/rolled back through the waiting room, which was now quite full, half of the parents looked at me sympathetically while others gave me the evil eye for the vile noise infraction. To help keep things in perspective, my daughter announced to everyone in a most pathetic voice that she had to get a shot, and then she sighed and looked quite downcast. She continued her quest for Oscar gold all the way back out to the car where I practically had to dump her out of the stroller and into her car seat where she couldn’t possibly buckle herself in because she was reliving the violent shot process.
On the drive home I came to the realization that if 3 children must get shots all at once, it’s probably best to bring along a partner (or at least a few mini straight jackets or a cocktail) to make the trip a little more bearable. Otherwise, it’s pure insanity, even for the best of parents! Moral of the story, next time you take your child to the doctor for shots, think of me and my scoundrels and maybe your visit won’t seem quite as terrible! Or, if it is as bad, just laugh it off and chalk it up to just another day of parenthood! What would we do without days like these? 🙂