Pricked Fingers

This morning I took Molé to the doctor for a month late 15 month check up. I didn’t feel too guilty though because BQ never even had a 15 month appointment since our sweet pediatrician in those days was trying to save us a couple of bucks since we had med student insurance (yet another topic for another post). I knew she would have shots and a finger prick to check for lead and anemia, but figured with Molé being the easy going little munchkin that she is it wouldn’t be a problem. Yah, I was wrong about that.

Luckily, my good friend who is a librarian is done for the year and her 3 year old’s school was out today and she graciously offered to watch BQ so I could take Molé to the doctor. (THANK YOU AGAIN!!). I was looking forward to being able to actually focus on Molé and have some one-on-one time. Car ride, good, waiting room entrance, good, mingling with Verna our faithful receptionist, good. When our fabulous doctor, who is just on her second day back from maternity leave mind you, greeted us things were still good. They went downhill the minute she closed the door to the exam room. After a bit of Molé glaring at our sweet pediatrician and being a bit uncooperative, we tried to open the door to see if that would help. Eh, sort of. But, she seemed to mellow out, especially once her shoes and pants were removed. The end was in sight and we only had the two shots and blood draw left. Mr. Bear was in my backpack, along with a forbidden juice box that I was ready to shamelessly bribe her with. I figured I was set. Yah, I was wrong about that too.

I held her on my lap for the two shots, which created a lot of screaming. But, I was able to pull Mr. Bear from my backpack and bust out some “itsy bitsy spider” and things looked up. We took a stroll down the hallway to the “room” where the blood draw would take place. I had a brief flashback of being there with BQ at her 2 year appointment. It went a little something like this…Me hugely swollen and pregnant one week away from my due date with Molé, an over-eager PA who was shadowing our doctor that day and did not get that two year olds like to do things independently and that if they do not smile at your advance RETREAT WOMAN RETREAT, and a pricked finger that would not bleed and had to be squeezed, squeezed and squeezed some more. This all then led to a MASSIVE tantrum in the middle of the hall for 15 minutes. Parents strolled by with their cuddly newborns, glaring. I of course knew what they did not- their day would too come. That visit ended up with me yelling and then both of us crying on the way home. Fond memory, I think not.

After mentally returning to the present time, I prepped to make this as easy and quick as possible. We were delayed a bit, and Molé started to get really antsy. I thought I’d bust out the juice box and let her start sipping so that it would be there during and after. Unfortunately it took much longer and by the time Verna appeared the box was empty. She requested Molé’s left ring finger so we extended it and the horror began. I soon realized that I was a doofus and should have suggested the right hand, since Molé likes to suck her left thumb. I learned this lesson the hard way. I had to sit there for about 5 minutes real time, though it felt like 5 years in my head, while Verna pinned down her arm and squeezed droplets of blood from that tiny finger to fill the vial. It was dreadful. It was at times unbearable. After she was finally done, she gave me some gauze to stop the bleeding. Problem was there was no way I could hold it still enough to apply pressure with her arm flapping about. Blood was flying everywhere. Finally, we attempted to lasso it all in with a bandaid and tried to leave. As we entered the parking lot I noticed that her little fist was full of blood. Back in we went. This of course took the screaming back up a notch and made her squirm fiercely to try and get out of my arms. We washed the hand, applied more pressure and bandaged it up again. This time I asked for some spare bandaids just in case. I thought she would calm down outside, but no. Then I thought she’d calm down soon after I started driving, but no. In all, she screamed for a half hour straight. The longest she has ever cried during her 16 months and 10 days on plant earth. Never have I heard her scream so much and it killed me. When the screaming did stop, I stole a glance in the rear view mirror only to find that she had literally passed out. Sweet girl.

So, for all of you that get an old fashioned blood draw done on your kiddos rather than a finger stick, be grateful. Never again will we do it this way. So inefficient, so traumatic, and so messy. Our blood stained clothes don’t even tell half the story. I think I have a date with a bottle of “stain remover spray” (I would say a brand but they seem to stalk my blog when I do).

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4 thoughts on “Pricked Fingers

  1. …and your little ones still handle the needles better than I do!

    I will never forget when my mom and a nurse had to hold me down for a blood draw…you’d think that a 12 year old wouldn’t need this course of action…but no…

    Hopefully no more doctor adventures for a while…

    1. if it makes you feel better, i’ve seen your little brother at the age of 26 held down, eyes pried open, for some eye drops. 🙂

  2. I think I clearly know the stories of the previous two comments – “yup, nurse, have him laying down when you draw the blood – i know he looks fine and calm, but he’ll be going down, be warned.” And the eye drops, guess he got that from his mom – i run my fastest if someone wants to put something in my eyes. Fortunately the PTSD is short lived!

  3. I’m so sorry. I know that the blood draws are important, but I don’t think one way is better than another. I won’t go into the details, but Jacob had to have a “normal” blood draw to confirm the peanut allergy and it was THE WORST experience I have ever had. I am now terrified of ever hearing those words “Let’s draw blood . . .” for any of my boys. That is at least until they are a bit older. Although, hearing Andy’s story, maybe not. 🙂 I feel your pain and I am so sorry you had to go through that. It SUCKS when our kids are in pain and don’t understand what’s going on. Totally heart-wrenching. I’m glad it’s over for now. I hope you have a Happy 4th!!

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