We take Eva to her two month checkup. In some ways we’re excited. We get to find out how much she weighs and how long she is, and the doctor gets to tell us what a healthy baby we have (hopefully). In some ways we’re terrified. I worry about getting poked by needles, and how she’ll react. Steph worries about reactions, side effects, etc.
We arrive and head back. First the good stuff. She’s in the 75th percentile for height and weight. Perfect. Not too big, not too small. That does mean, in fact, that she hasn’t been spitting up her entire bottle, which she makes seem possible at times. Plus, that clears off one potential worry about the adoption. One specific way you can lose your child before the adoption is final is if the child is suffering from “failure to thrive”. Now, if she were in fact in the lower percentiles, and was failing to thrive, we would need to prove that we are taking the appropriate measures to reverse that trend. So it is not an automatic ding on our reputation, but it might weigh on our souls as one.
The pediatrician comes in and checks out Eva. Everything is good! Excellent! Now is the time we’ve dreaded. The nurse comes in with the syringes.
I’m now remembering Quinton’s shocked face. That was a few years ago when he got his rabies shot, which must be injected right into the muscle. I was looking into his eyes, then the needle pierced the skin and muscle. His face changed so dramatically to a state of shock, and he let out a piercing yelp. The yelp was second to the face though, as it screamed out to me “Daddy, why did you let them do this to me?!”
I’m afraid now of Eva’s shock face being a permanent wart on my memory. Our nurse does the deed, five shots in all in quick succession. Eva’s now screaming. Eyes clenched, full red face, fists clenched and speakers turned up to 11. This is probably the best/worst realization I’ve had, that I’ve seen this reaction before, and I know she’ll recover. Lucky in the sense I know that she’ll be alright, but unlucky in the sense that at some point in the time she’s lived with us that we’ve allowed her to suffer as much as being shot five times.
Daddy: This is for your own good. We put you through this because we love you.
Eva (impersonating Bon Jovi): Shot to the hip, and you’re to blame. You give love a bad name.
Once done and band-aided, Mom leaps to the rescue and is in full comforting mode. Eva recovers rather quickly, not happy mind you, but not apocalyptic. Crisis averted. Throughout the rest of the day, she’d be unhappy if we bumped the injection points, but other than that, all good! No fever, no side effects. Time Out!
Crap, I don’t have Zach Morris’s ability to call time, so Saturday comes. So too comes the f ever, and his ugly cousin diarrhea. Fussiness ensues, which starts the inevitable crazy cycle of “I’m cranky because I’m tired, but I can’t sleep because I’m cranky”. I get frustrated that she doesn’t understand that the best cure for tiredness is sleep, while ignoring the fact that I’m playing Tecmo Football when she’s napping instead of napping myself. (A Saved by the Bell and Nintendo/Sega reference in the same paragraph. Why yes, I’m a child of the early 90’s.)
She continues to be off her sleep cycle through the night causing the next side effect, parent zombification. Fever is gone by Sunday afternoon, but diarrhea continues.
Why just that week we started our transition to cloth diapers. Talk about trial by fire. A normal day would consist of 1-2 poopy diapers. With the side-effects though, we’re dealing with 7-8 a day. Rather than just easily tossing the dirty diaper, now we must move it into a zippered bag for laundry. With so many diapers, it’s hard not to smear some on the zipper at times.
Our pediatrician tells us that the diarrhea may last up to a week. Day seven comes, and there is still runniness, but it has gotten better. What to do if it reaches day eight? Know that it’s trending better, and she has no other symptoms so it’s probably fine, or panic call the pediatrician? It’s no matter, as day eight comes and everything is back normal. Whew.
There are few things more stressful than a child’s sickness and not knowing what to do.