Confessions of a Middleagedmom

surviving motherhood in the “middle ages”

How to Traumatize Your Toddler in Three Days July 26, 2009

Filed under: children,dad,family,moms,toddlers — middleagedmom @ 5:39 pm
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My poor Baby!

Last week she had a very traumatic stressful 3 days!

I noticed that when Baby turned 18 months, her “personality” changed a little. She’s always been very strong willed but now she is so “verbal” about it. When I say verbal, I’m referring to her strong lungs expressing her unhappiness about not getting what she wants, when she wants it.  Yes, she has started showing tantrum behavior! She is also in the midst of a whiny stage, esp. when she is afraid of something.

One night this past week, I decided that I would vacuum her room before she went to bed. She was relaxing on the floor in the family room watching one of her favorite videos. (Yes, she does watch TV.) As soon as she heard me turn on the vacuum, I heard a loud wail and she came running into her bedroom straight for me. She wanted me to carry her. So, I turned off the vacuum and took her back to the family room. She calmed down and started to play with her blocks so I snuck away to finish vacuuming. Not 1 second after I turned the vacuum on, she came running back to me screaming. I finally had to carry her and finish vacuuming.

The very next day we took her to the pediatrician for her well baby check-up. As soon as Mr. MaD put her down to get measured (for her length) she started to scream. I knew right then and there what this visit would be like. We went to the exam room and I had to undress her down to her diaper. She started to cry. I quickly distracted her by carrying her and showing her the fish mobile that was in the room I had to carry her while her temperature was taken and her head got measured. When the doctor came in, she was a little whiny. I asked the doctor about her fear of the vacuum cleaner and he explained that at this age, she is more aware of her surroundings and can develop more complex fears. He also reminded me that the vacuum cleaner is very loud. He also asked us to get another blood test done for Baby within the next month to check on her anemia. Soon it was time for the exam and the doctor decided to look in her ears. She began screaming again. Actually, it was good because it gave the doctor a chance to look into her mouth. We finished the rest of the exam with me holding her in my lap just to get her to calm down a little. The doctor said that her anxiety and crying were not that bad. It could have been worse since she was able to calm down a little. Then came the dreaded shots! Oh my gosh, we tried to get Baby to lie down but she would not have it. She fought with her arms and legs. So again, I had to carry her while she got her shots. I held her arms, Mr. MaD held her legs, and the nurse gave her the shots in her thighs. She screamed the whole time, even before the shot ever touched her.

The next morning Mr. MaD decide that Baby should get her blood test done since he had to get one done also. Poor Baby! We took her to the lab and because she didn’t remember going there before she was as happy as ever. Until, I sat down in the room with her on my lap. It’s as if she knew that this room was not a good place to be.  Soon, 2 lab techs entered the room. Baby began to cry as they examined her arms. I asked if they were using her arm or her finger and I explained that the last time she came they drew blood from her finger.  They said they could use the finger but the arm might be better. So I said OK to the arm thinking that it might make the whole ordeal faster (more blood being drawn from the arm vein than the droplets from her finger). By this time, Baby is screaming and I’m beginning to sweat. The lab tech ties off her arm and preps the area. Soon another lab tech comes into the room. That’s a total of 3 lab techs, Mr. MaD, Baby, and me! I’m holding Baby’s one arm, Mr. MaD is holding her legs, one lab tech is holding her drawing arm, the other lab tech is poking her, and the other lab tech is holding the vials. I think they drew about 3 vials of blood. Baby screamed the whole time and I was tearing up by the end, all the while trying to calm her down by telling her it was almost done. Yeah, right! She could care less what I was saying, she just wanted out of that room.

After the blood draw was complete, the lab tech tried to offer Baby a sticker. She threw the sticker on the ground and began crying more. I quickly thanked them and took her back to the reception area.  We sat down and I quickly wiped her hands (with my recent puchase of CleanWell wipes) so that she could put her finger in her mouth to calm down. Did I mention that she sucks her finger? That’s another reason why I didn’t want to blood drawn from her finger.

As we waited for Mr. MaD to finish his blood test,  the lab techs came out to try to make friends with Baby. They talked to her, smiled at her, waved at her but she did not even want to look at them. When one of the lab techs tried to approach her, she put her head down on my shoulder and began to whine.

I knew it was time to leave. Thankfully, Mr. MaD finished his blood test so we quickly thanked them and left the lab. As soon as we got to the car, Baby grabbed at the gauze that was wrapped around her arm and pulled it out so we decide to just unbandage her. Having that bandage wrapped around her arm was a constant reminder to her of her traumatic morning. Thankfully, she didn’t get a bruise since we didn’t have pressure applied for at least 5 minutes.

As we drove off, I told Mr. MaD that I felt so bad for Baby. She had such a stressful and traumatic 3 days. I pray that her blood test for anemia comes back okay so that we don’t have to go through this again. Unfortunately, in 6 months she’ll have to get shots again.


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