Baby’s First Doctor Visit … With Shots

Early on you’ll have a few doctor visits which are mere check-ups. The real trauma, for both baby and parents begins with the first round of vaccination shots. Yes, we decided early on in the pregnancy that we were going to participate in getting GT vaccinated. And, even though we had already made our decision, the cosmos sent us a reaffirming nudge when there was a measles outbreak among small children that hadn’t been vaccinated. Despite where you stand on the vaccination debate, there will eventually be a situation where your control over your child’s well-being will be sidelined.

In our case, it was his first doctor’s appointment involving shots. GT has been an overall happy child. Even while the doctor was checking him over he was alert, smiling, and playfully engaging the doc. It was at the point where the nurse came in near the end of the appointment with the needles that we knew things were about to change. Seemingly in a blink of an eye the nurse put the needles down, grabbed and pinned GT’s legged, and the crying and tears began. I’m not sure if the nurse was putting too much pressure on his legs for his liking or if it was the shock of instantly being constrained, but when that switch flipped and the cries and tears began, those heart strings were being tugged hard.

It was the first time in our short existence as a family that neither one of us could rush in and instantly stop the torment. I was standing behind Mommy, so I couldn’t be sure if she had tears in her eyes, but I know I did. That was THE hardest challenge in my short time as being father. To GT’s credit and testament to just how happy he is normally, the crying lasted about 5 minutes after the last needle. After some calming snuggles from Mom and a bottle (yes, we totally rewarded him with food) he was back to normal.

Baby’s First Laugh … For Dad

Mommy was of course the first parent to get GT to laugh. But, she also had the privilege of 8 hours of intensive training each day with GT during her maternity leave. Then one day after work, while holding GT, he was trying to support himself on my chest. In doing so, he started to sway one hand and then smack it down. The swings began to get wilder and I caught a stray palm in the face. Of course, my reaction was say “ouch!” Man-o-man, you’d swear I just won Last Comic Standing because he thought that was the funniest thing ever and began laughing.  And that’s how Dad received his baby’s first laugh.

From that day, I’ve become the self-proclaimed King of Laughs in our house. It could be making animal noises (the monkey is his favorite), playing tease or tug-of-war, peek-a-boo, or tickling his back or legs; it doesn’t matter, he breaks out into a laughing fit. So, don’t despair if you haven’t been able to get your child to laugh, the time will come!

On a side note, during another Daddy Daycare stint, we were attempting dinner while Mommy was at work. GT was starting to get a little rambunctious in the high chair and I told him a stern “No!” He paused what he was doing, looked up at me, and instead of the tears I was expecting, the little apple of my eye laughed in my face. Staring at each other, one of us in a full giggle fit, it was impossible to not join in. Obviously this was a mistake because now anytime I try to tell him no, it’s giggles and he’ll just keep repeating what he’s doing.

Please leave a comment about your favorite laughing moment!