So we had our first visit with the Travel Doctor last week. As usual with Doctors, she was running late. We got in to see her 45 minutes after our scheduled appointment. But it wasn’t so bad, as this gave me a chance to peruse all of the in-your-face posters that described all the many terrible diseases we will be exposing ourselves to by leaving our safe little haven. The fear factor is very crucial in selling overpriced vaccines after all!
So we finally get in to see the Dr and tell her what the plans are. Her response was “Wow! You are brave!” I didn’t know how to take this after all those scary pamphlets and posters in the waiting room. Internally I was thinking “Does she think we are putting our children in danger or was she giving us a compliment?” Anyways, I explained that we are unsure of our departure date so really all I was looking for was for the kids to get their first Hep A shots and the rest of them we will decide on when we know when we will be leaving. So, with more pamphlets and printouts in hand I took the kids, one by one, into the nurses office for the dreaded needle.
I had explained to the children numerous times throughout the week that they would be getting a needle and why it was necessary. They seemed OK with it. Kayden was first and, wow, what a trooper. He sat calmly on my lap, cried for maybe 30 seconds post-poke and then happily sucked on his green lolly-pop. Then came Lan’s turn. He had decided he didn’t want a needle anymore and would not let me expose his arms. He held his sleeves with all his strength and after cajoling and bribing didn’t work I had to go with force. I finally pried his sleeve out of his white knuckle grip and the fast as lightning nurse did the deed. For those of you who have never heard the capacity of Lan’s lungs, let me describe his screeching wale for you. I’m talking ear-piercing, make all the dogs in the neighborhood howl, and the howler monkeys envious kind of scream. And it lasted soooooo long. He was in hysterics! After calming him back down to a less offensive decibel level, I took him back to the packed waiting room. With a lolly-pop and drool hanging out of Lan’s mouth, we emerged and had everyone in the waiting room staring at my poor traumatized boy and me.
And the pain was not all for the children this night. The $160 price tag left me hurting too. Ouch!