This isn’t a post designed to get into a debate over whether immunizations are a good idea or not.
Last night Ross and I took Kale to the clinic for his first shots. It was something we spent a great deal of time researching and weighing the pros and cons and just like circumcision, I think its something you have to decide based solely on what’s good for your family rather than what is the norm or the trend or what your friends or relatives do. So, we elected to go ahead with immunizations after a great deal of research. If you are in the process of trying to decide I highly recommend “Your Child’s Best Shot” as a good starting point and one reasonably science-based book you can read. I also recommend reading books from the “Immunizations are Evil” camp to give you an alternate view before making up your mind. The one I read was a bit older and out of date as far as some of their arguments because now the immunization do not contain live cultures anymore, so that is something to take into consideration – how new is the information you are reading.
Anyway, so as some of you know, when Mooki has to get her nails trimmed, Ross has to take her because I cannot stand to hear her whimper and cry like she is being killed and Ross and I both knew that I wasn’t going to be able to handle Kale’s cries when he was immunized so we developed a game plan in advance of goin to the clinic. Sort of like good cop, bad cop. I had brought the camera thinking that maybe if I occupied myself with taking some pictures, I could handle it. Um. NO.
Ross and I both went. I had scheduled the appointment so that he could come because there is no way I could do this myself. Kale had had a hard afternoon – he had been dead tired but wasn’t interested in sleeping despite my best efforts – so we arrived and he was a bit quiet and chilled out. We weighed him (12 lbs 13 oz for those of you that are interested) and then waited for our turn.
Another couple was there with their 2 year old and their 2 month old. They went before us and the screaming. Oh. My. God. It wasn’t even my child and I was getting teary eyed. This didn’t bode well for the camera picture taking angle so I said to Ross “I’m not going to be able to do this,” and Ross said to me “Yeah, I know.”
So it was our turn and we had the nurse look at Kale’s belly button as it STILL crusts a little. When his stump came off, it came off sort of like [WARNING: IF YOU LIKE MARSHMALLOWS DON’T READ THIS NEXT SENTENCE OR I WILL RUIN MARSHMALLOWS FOR YOU FOREVER] when you roast a marshmallow and pull off the outer part – you are left with a soft inner part. Our midwife had told us that little pokey bit would either fall off or heal over and stay that way. So he sort of has an outie in his innie and the outie part STILL crusts a bit and still isn’t totally healed. The nurse seemed unconcerned and said (as I was expecting) “If you are worried, go see your doctor”. I’m not worried, I just wondered if it was normal. Anyway, so after that, I had to leave the little exam room and Ross had to be bad cop.
I sat outside and said “That’s not Kale. That’s not Kale. That’s not Kale.” over and over to myself as I heard him crying and screaming. It didn’t last long – he settled pretty fast actually. We had to stick around for 15 minutes afterwards to ensure he didn’t have a reaction and then we went home for a relaxing bath, a long suck, and bed.
Here is a sad shot of the evidence (four! bandaids!) of Kale’s evil parents before his bath:
Today he appears normal except maybe a bit sleepier than normal (its still early so who knows) and has not gotten a fever or anything. The injection sites don’t even bother him. It wasn’t easy to decide on getting Kale immunized – and part of the difficulty was in knowingly hurting him “for his own good”. I think there are going to be many other moments in my parenting life where I know that Kale may be hurt, uncomfortable, or unhappy as a direct result of me having to do something “for his own good” and that thought alone almost prevented me from agreeing to immunize. But when I weighed it out, that reason is pretty selfish of me.
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This weekend, Kale, Ross and I are going to his cousin’s house for lunch to see his aunt and uncle who are here from Australia. There will be 13 people there (mad props to Nicole for agreeing to have that many people over for a meal at once, my god, what is she? Superwoman?) and I am a little nervous as to the reaction of Kale of that many people and that much noise. But I have high hopes for him as he has sailed through everything else we have thrown at him so far.
Also, for those of you who followed me here from my old weight loss blog, you might be interested to know that yesterday I cancelled my gym membership. I had been on “medical” leave from about month 5 of my pregnancy and they called me yesterday to find out when I was planning on coming back. It was sort of “come back or quit” and so with only those options I quit. Their hours suck – they aren’t open on Sundays and close at 7PM and my friend Krissy who works there has a different schedule now and she was half the reason I dragged my sorry ass to the gym in the first place. I’ve lost all my pregnancy weight and then some (but OH MAN I am a totally different shape now, ha ha ha) just by carrying Kale around and walking a few kilometers every day. I also have a post partum yoga DVD I can pull out and do if I want and I think as winter approaches I will likely just go to the community centre. They have a pool and a gym and a circuit training area and they also offer child minding. Although I am not sure when I will be ready to let a STRANGER! mind Kale.