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I've never liked shots, and I don't think I know anyone who does, but I REALLY don't like watching Zoë get her shots. I know they're important and a whole lot better than getting the disease itself, but it doesn't make feeling helpless any better for me. 

Every doctor's office is different, but yours will go over the immunization schedule they use with you. For our pediatrician, Zoë got her first shot for Hepatitis B at her one month well child visit. That wasn't bad at all. It still sucked watching it happen, but after about a minute of ear-piercing crying, Zoë calmed down and that was the end of that. Not too shabby, for a little one.

Then there was her second month visit where she had a total of seven vaccines, but in three shots and one that was administered orally. Zoë got lucky, if you can call it that. One of the shots was a combination vaccine for DTaP (Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis--aka whooping cough), Polio and Hib, but some offices don't offer them as a combo. The other two shots were for her second dose of Hep B and Pneumococcal and the oral dose was for Rotovirus (too bad they couldn't all be oral vaccines).

This time, I didn't even watch as the shots were administered. I held Zoë's hands to her chest as instructed by the MA and sang to her (as if that would really help anyone). I'm pretty sure that I would have cried had I watched. I'm a weakling like that.

Zoë's reaction to the shots was not as minimal as her first, and I don't blame her. She was crying and screaming hysterically. To calm her down, I gave her a pacifier and swaddled her (even though I'd be undoing the swaddle as soon as we got to the car). The doctor mentioned that I could give her infant acetaminophen (Tylenol) if she was running a fever or fussing later on as well. 

Once we got into the car, I had Wes sit in the backseat with her to keep her company and she was calm. When we got home, I swaddled her for her nap, nursed her and she fell right to sleep, but when she woke up from her nap she was back to the crying and screaming and it wasn't because she had a wet diaper. I could tell her legs were hurting when I was changing her diaper. Moving the muscles near the area of a shot helps alleviate the pain, so I helped her move her legs, but it certainly isn't an instant fix. 

I had already bought the infant acetaminophen, so I went to grab it, but the recommended dose for infants her age said to consult with a doctor. I wish I would have known that before because calling the doctor isn't exactly a quick or easy task...especially when you have a screaming baby in pain. Note to self, ask what the recommended dose is before leaving the doctor's office next time just in case.

Anyway, I gave her the acetaminophen, swaddled her and nursed her back to sleep and I hoped that would be the end of her pain. When she woke up again, she was a little fussy, but not too bad. I was happy that the acetaminophen was helping. She was extra tired that day, so after her feeding, she went back down for another nap. 

When she woke up that time, it was back to the crying, but it had been about five hours by that time, so I gave her another dose. Finally, she was content--smiling and "talking" again. I was so happy to see that smile again. Unfortunately, her next two visits will be the same vaccines again. Poor Zoë. She just might be dealing with teething next time too...
 





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