Shots for Mario

Mario made it through his shots yesterday…barely. You would have thought he was undergoing major surgery. Jon and I debated about whether to tell him the night before: Jon was adamant against telling him and I was for it. Of course, I did it and Mario had a complete meltdown. He threw himself in my arms and pleaded for us not to take him. Patty got to witness the insanity since she spent the night with us. I can’t believe how anxious and stressed he gets over shots. For being Mr. Tough in every other area, he sure takes a hit in this area.

I rubbed his back and scratched his arm (he loves when I scratch from the top of his arm all the way to his fingertips) and he eventually went to sleep.

The next morning he woke to the fear of heading to the doctor. He again pleaded to not go for another week. He cried to Patty hoping she’d intervene (which she would have if he didn’t absolutely need his shots). We let him play on the iPad until we had to leave.

“I want everyone to come with me” he begged as we got ready. So Jon, Patty, Maria and I all went down to the doc’s office. He went back and forth between Patty and me while waiting to head back – looking pathetic as ever.


Meanwhile, Maria sprawled out on the couch and gave Mario orders to get her water to try to take his mind off of the shots. When he brought Patty and I water and none for her, she exclaimed “What?! None for your big sis?!”


We walked back to the room and as soon as we stepped in, Mario cried and begged to leave. Maria again tried to calm him down by pointing at the used needles and saying “Look Mario, the needles aren’t that big!” Way to go Ri. He cried harder.

Jon promised him $5 if he made it through being a brave boy.

The nurses came in and had Jon sit on the table and bear hug Mario. I stood behind Mario and held his elbows. Mario wailed. He pleaded “let me tell you one thing!” He told them to wait a second. They did. Then he pleaded “let me tell you one more thing.” They did. He asked if the shots would hurt. We reiterated that they would be over quickly. He pleaded again “let me tell you one more thing!” We said “this is it Mario. What is it?” He looked at Jon with big old tears and said “I don’t know I just want one more thing.” He knows how to procrastinate.

The nurses and Jon and I caught eyes and knew it was time and boom – shots in both arms and we were done! They put band-aids on and it was over… but not for Mario. He wailed on the floor and on the table about how much his arms hurt. Then, after the drama and as Jon was about to leave, he sniffles out “where is my money?”

We knew we were back to the old Mario.

Braving the flu vaccine

I finally scheduled flu vaccines for M&M last week. I got hit with that alien bug and wanted to try my best to prevent the kids from suffering (even though there are rumors that the flu nasal spray may cause flu-like symptoms?).

Maria swore up and down that she was going to get the shot. She prides herself on being a machine. I can’t count the number of times that she has fallen off her bike and people passing by make a quick stop and stare at her thinking she’s seriously hurt. She pops up with a big smile on her face and chirps “What? I’m fine! I’m fine!”

When we walked in the doctor’s room, Mario begged to go first. He wanted to get the ordeal over with and wanted to make sure he got the spray. There was no way he was considering the shot. He still gets concerned when we tell him he has to get shots in a month for his check-up. He asks twenty questions about the shots: “Are the shots big? Will they hurt? Do they sting? Will I cry?”

The nurse came in with the nasal shot and explained to Mario how he’d have to hold his nose after she sprayed the mist. He was excited that he was so calm about the ordeal.


The nurse sprayed both nostrils and he immediately pinched his nose just like the nurse ordered. Perfect patient.


Mario stepped off the table beaming proud at his accomplishment. He helped Maria onto the table acting like her little knight in shining armor. She continued to demand a shot and the nurse went out to get one laughing at Maria’s courage. Meanwhile, Mario played with a truck and I looked at my phone. In those few seconds, Ri changed her mind.

“I was going to get a shot to show Mario it doesn’t hurt but then he got the spray so there’s no reason to get it.” Makes sense.


The nurse was sent back to get nasal spray shaking her head as if she knew that Ri wouldn’t take a shot. Little does she know my girl. She would have easily taken that shot if there had been any reason. But Mario already had his spray and I wasn’t getting one so why suffer unnecessarily? She’s smart. She also fully abided by the nurse’s orders and squeezed her nose tight after the spray.


The nurse shook her head yet again as she walked out of the room and muttered “I wish all of my patients could be so good.”


No More Medical Professionals Please!

“Mom, when do we get to go home?  I want to go now, mom, please.”

Maria enjoying the dentist

Mario bellowed those words over and over this morning.  I subjected the poor boy to a double dose of fun – the dentist and the doctor – and I am quite sure he will mention the indelible trauma it caused him 30 years from now.  Maria has never minded the dentist or the doctor.  She did not want to leave on her first dentist trip; she kept asking questions to the dentist, and was pumped when she got to take a sticker out of a big plastic tooth.  Today was no different.  She burst into tears at 6 am this morning when I told her we may not go to the dentist because Mario was spiking a fever. 

“Mom, please, take me to the dentist.  You can just hold Mario and give him your phone to play with.  Please, mom.”

How could I deny her after that pleading?  I don’t want her to blame me for a traumatic event, too.  She walked right into the back room when the dental assistant called her name. When I stood to ask her if she wanted me to go back, she stopped me.   “I am fine, mom.”  Yet another leap away from needing her mama.  Proud…but kinda sad.  

Mario not enjoying the dentist

Mario sat in the waiting room playing on my I-Pad and asking to download every ninja, hunting, or fighting game he found.  When they called him back, he dutifully walked back trying to continue his play on the IPad while walking (he’s my son).  The dental assistant sat him in the chair and explained that she was going to clean his teeth.  He chose grape flavor and all was good… until she attempted to put her hands in his mouth to clean his teeth.  He clenched.  He cried.  He did not want her near him.  I tried to explain to him that she was not going to hurt him in any way but he wanted nothing to do with her.  He pleaded to go home.  He begged me to take him out of the chair.  Horrible.  Sweet Maria looked around the room trying to find items he might enjoy (a picture of a “hot” girl brushing her teeth, a balloon, and my IPad) but nothing worked.  She told him to hold her hand and that she loved him but that didn’t work either.  It was ridiculous!  My tough-man is not so tough at the dentist. 

So, if I had not tortured him enough at the dentist, I took him to the doctor right after we dropped off Maria at school.  He usually does not mind the doctor, especially when his sister joins us.  But today, I knew it would be different because he had to get a throat swab to check for strep throat.  My stoic Maria even cringes at the thought of the swab check.  But her worse reaction to it was to cry for three minutes and then open up and get it over.  Mario beat her by far.  When the nurse came towards him with the swab, he innately knew something was up.  She had her one chance to get him but she was too slow and when she stuck it in his mouth as he opened up for her, she must have hit the roof of his mouth and he closed up immediately.  She didn’t get the swab, and there was no way she was going to get it.  He was beyond pissed off at every  medical professional now.  He sobbed, he hyperventilated, he begged to leave or at least “wait until later.”  It lasted an entire fifteen minutes until the nurse left and even then, he laid like a wet noodle in my arms.  Eventually he got back into the IPad but then the doctor came in the room.  Luckily, she was good with him and asked him all the questions that would engage him (who is your favorite superhero, what did you get for Christmas, what is your favorite IPad game). 

Nevertheless, when she took another swab out of the jar, he freaked.  There is nothing worse than having your son beg you to help him through what he believes to be a horrid situation and the only thing you can do is put him in a hold-down and be complicit in the horrid act.  But again, this doctor came through and tricked Mario and me.  She asked him to open his mouth just so she could shine a light on his throat (what she did earlier) and then she quickly and precisely jabbed the swab in his throat.  When she took it out, he realized what had happened and looked at me in disbelief.  I praised him like he had just won the Olympics.  When we walked out, he looked up at me and asked “Are you proud of me, mom?”  My sweet babe.  We took a long walk in the stroller and he fell asleep due to all of the trauma of the day.  I stopped and stared at him for a long time.  My doll baby.   

All I know is that I am scheduling the next appointment for Mairo on a day when Jon is in town!