Thursday, June 25, 2009


"Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors."
African Proverb

Crazybaby had her 12 month immunizations yesterday. (She's actually 15 months old, but we're a bit behind schedule.) Her appointment was at 3:00 p.m., which should have worked perfectly with her nap schedule. Typically, she naps from lunchtime to 2:30. A solid two hours in the middle of the day. You can bet on Crazybaby's naps. You can set your watch to them. She's incredibly consistent. An excellent napper; Queen of the Kip. Until yesterday. Yesterday she fell asleep at 2:00 p.m. and had to be awoken at 2:35 p.m.. She was not a happy camper.

Crazybaby was crying before we even left the house. And she can cry. My baby definitely has some lung power. She calmed down a bit for the ten minute drive to our local Rec. Centre where the nurses were holding the immunization clinic. Usually we got to the Rec. Centre for 'Teeter-Tots,' or to play on the playground equipment, so Crazybaby's eyes sparkled when we initially got out of the car. She was anticipating some fun on the trampoline, crawling on the mats, perhaps a slide or two; definitely not four needles being jabbed into her arms.

When we entered the waiting room, Crazybaby took one look at the volunteer and launched into an impressive wail. (The 'wail' I'm referring to is more impressive than a cry, but less than a scream in its intensity.) I immediately dove into the diaper bag for her favourite books, her pacifier, her water-bottle, and finally her little 'Bob-the-Builder' toy, but she would have nothing to do with any of my sure-fire soothers. She continued to wail. And arch. And kick. The serious-looking volunteer pushed a box of tissues and a clipboard in my direction. There was a checklist of 12 month old descriptors that I was supposed to check before we could proceed with the shots. Not helpful. With my raging, squirming baby in my left arm & a pencil and clipboard in the right, I hastily checked all the boxes.

At this point I was almost ready to throw in the towel. I mean, how many babies are red-faced and tear-stained before they're even in the same room as the needles? I wondered if I should postpone the shots and wait for a day when Crazybaby was well-rested. As I was pondering this, the nurse arrived and ushered us into another office where the four needles were awaiting Crazybaby's pudgy little arms.

I'm not going to break down the next ten minutes for you. If you have kids and you believe in immunizing them, you know what it's like. Of note is the fact that Crazybaby screamed so loud, one Rec. Centre employee had to leave her office. She couldn't stand to hear her scream.

Fifteen minutes after the injections, we were on our way home and Crazybaby was still breathing in the way that kids breathe after they've had a monumental cry. It's actually kind of a tender little sound because you know that the worst is over. When we got home all I wanted to do was snuggle with her and soothe her and kiss her puffy little eyelids. Crazybaby babbled to her sister and Grandma about the experience she'd had, and she broke into a pitiful little sob when my mom gave her an empathetic look. She was exhausted.

I should have guessed that on the one day it was important for Crazybaby to have a solid nap, she wouldn't. It's Murphy's Law. Or is it? Does it instead have something to do with the energy I put out when I have an agenda? Did I have some anxiety about the afternoon appointment? It's entirely possible. Whatever the case, I'm going to try to be more aware of my 'state' next time. I'm already not looking forward to next time.