Injections and vaccinations are a part of all of our childhoods. They are the things that help us protect ourselves from those nasty illnesses. As parents, we can’t do it all.
For both of my kids, so far, the actual injections have been relatively clear sailing. My wife being able to breastfeed them during the injection or just after has meant less pain, fewer tears, and happy times.
The other week, the time had come for my eldest daughter to have her 3 year injections.
She’s not breastfed exclusively any more and mum couldn’t come, so it was down to me to take her.
When I was her age, I didn’t deal well with injections and needles. I remember very vividly, crying for at least an hour in the hospital outpatients ward, waiting to be injected. I wailed. I screamed. But then I had the injection and wondered what all the fuss was about! I’m OK now. I donate blood and I’m a bone marrow donor, so I’m all go!
When I got to the GP surgery with my eldest, I started to remember what it was like for me at her age, going to get my injections. My wife and I had spent the past few weeks explaining exactly what would happen so she would be prepared.
I remembered that my wife said she’d be having 2 injections. Then I suddenly realised! Both arms! Ouch!
I then, weirdly, moved beyond reminiscing about my old fears and went into feeling protective!
How do I feel about someone stabbing my daughter in the arm with a needle? What if I say, “No!” and stand in the way?
Totally weird and random, but I quickly brushed off that thought pattern!
Then we were called in.
Once we sat down, it was obvious that the nurse was prepared and experienced. Certificates. Stickers. Stickers galore!
The nurse explained what she was going to do and did it.
And what was my daughter’s reaction?
Nothing. Not a twinge! Not a single peep!
The nurse was talking all the way through it, explaining as she went for the other arm.
And again! Not a single twinge!
What an absolute hero, I thought. A 3 year old being so brave, especially when compared with how I dealt with it. I was even more proud than I usually am.
The nurse then turned to me as she was clearing up and mentioned she had never seen such clear reasoning in a 3 year old.
Well done, B!
After thinking about the experience afterwards, my conclusion was that she probably behaved in this way for the following reasons…
– she had no negative feelings because of the positive experiences she had from previous injections;
– trust, because we explained to her what would happen, and it did.
This has also been backed up by the fact that my wife and I explain most things that happen; whether it be going to bed, going out for the day, or eating a meal. Especially meeting her needs since birth has meant that there’s deep trust too!
Attachment Parenting is something that my wife and I have adopted since the beginning of our journey into a bigger family. Please click here to find out what it’s all about…
Now it’s starting to get really interesting! Marrying up what’s gone before and how it’s manifesting itself now and tomorrow.