Monday, December 23, 2013

Carter's 12 Month Appointment

Whew, that was tough!  This morning was Carter's 12 month doctor's appointment.  When I messaged the doctor earlier this month about Carter's possible egg allergy he said to avoid eggs and we'd talk about it more at his 12 month appointment.  So today I brought it up and he said they'd do an allergy test.  It wasn't until the nurse came in that I realized the allergy test was a blood draw.  They had a little needle attached to a tube which sucked the blood into a vial.  The nurse pulled Carter to the end of the table so his legs hung over and I pinned his legs against the table.  She pricked him and drew blood as the other nurse held his arm down and I held his other hand and rubbed his belly.
Still upset when we got home.  He has bruises on his arms.

Carter does really well with shots.  I hold his hand and calmly talk to him and he watches my face so I make sure I smile at him.  The blood draw was a totally different story.  He screamed and scrunched his eyes up as big, fat tears welled up and rolled down his cheeks.  I kept saying over and over in my head, "don't cry, don't cry, don't cry" as I talked sweetly to my little boy.  It was all I could do not to reach down and pull my poor, little baby up into my arms.  I looked over at his arm only to notice a very minimal amount of blood going through the tube and nothing in the vial which made me anxious because I didn't want Carter to have to go through the blood draw much longer.

The nurse finally gave up and said we needed to switch arms.  I immediately grabbed Carter up in my arms, rubbed his back, and spoke softly into his ear.  He finally started to calm down and sucked big gulps of air as he nuzzled into me.  When she was ready to try with the other arm I couldn't bear the thought of setting him back down on the table.  The moment I did he began to scream again.  This time he had his head toward the end of the table so I had to hold his legs down with my hand which was heartbreaking.  I could no longer rub his belly, so I just held his hand and spoke calmly to him.  I eventually had to stop talking because I knew if I opened my mouth, I wouldn't be able to hold the tears in any longer.  Finally they had enough blood and we were finished with the allergy test.

It was now time for his 12 month shots.  My sweet, little boy who barely makes a peep when he gets a shot was already screaming as I set him back down for his shots.  At this point I was very upset and tense from restraining my poor baby and trying not to cry myself.  When he got the first shot his entire face turned red as he arched his back and screamed louder than I have ever heard him scream before.  All the tension had to be released from my body somehow and the strangest thing happened, I started laughing.  It was so weird.  I was one of those people I never quite understood.  You know, those people who laugh at funerals or during the really sad part of a movie.  Like one of my best friends who laughed at the end of The Notebook.  The kind of laugh that I could tell was more of a nervous, I don't know how to react laugh.  I'm not sure what would have been better.  To allow myself to cry or to awkwardly laugh as my son cried.  I could tell the nurse was also feeling stressed and awkward and giggled a little once I started laughing.
Lucky for Carter his Uncie Tommy, Grammy, and Grampy all came to visit today!

Sitting here writing about this 2 hours later, I am still a bit on edge.  There is nothing that can compare to having to hear your child cry.  Especially when you are part of the reason why they are crying.  One time Carter started crying when Ty was standing right next to him.  My response was so immediate and without thinking, that I ran over and bent to pick Carter up at the same time as Ty and we ended up bumping heads.  Ty was a little bit offended, saying, "I was right there, why couldn't you let me pick him up?"  Why?  Because my immediate reaction is to go straight to him when he's crying and make the crying stop.  Now I understand that is not always the best thing for him and I do let him cry in situations where he doesn't want to be put down and is just being a little bit of a stinker.  But when my baby is in pain, you better believe his momma comes running.  So to stand there and watch him red-faced with tears running down his face, that was torture.  But the good news is that we should get the results from his allergy test back later this week and as for the shots, he will be less likely to get sick and to get others sick.  I just read a really interesting blog post about vaccinating children which made me even more grateful for the ability to protect Carter.

After going through the blood draw with Carter I respect parents whose children undergo surgeries at a young age even more.  Situations like that are arguably more traumatic for the parent than for the child.  Ty had multiple surgeries as a child and his parents still recount stories like it was yesterday.  The pain of seeing your child hurting is always fresh in a parent's mind.  I know there are more moments like today to come in my life as a parent, but I'm very thankful that I have this one behind me!  Now that I have all of Carter's 12 month stats, I will be posting his 12 month post soon.  Hopefully tomorrow, but we'll see since it will be Christmas Eve and all! 
Carter with his stocking last year.
Carter with his stocking this year.


  1. Oh! The picture of him crying kills me! I must hold him! When Megan was one she got croup and had to be hospitalized. The nurses were trying to find a vein to start an IV and couldn't! I had to hold her down for them. Tears streaming the entire time, even through a different second nurse because first nurse couldn't get the job done! Whew! Being a mom can sometimes be heart wrenching!

    1. Oh, that would be horrible! A couple of Ty's co-workers have sick babies right now, one with the croup!