Vaccination Shots: Yep, I’m the Pansy of My Family

There are a few things that I am absolutely terrified of like spiders, the Mothman, rubbing the edge of a serrated butter knife against my teeth, praying mantises, and owning a little dog. Then there’s one of the biggest of all: getting a shot.

Few things make me queasier than the thought of getting a shot and it’s been that way for as long as I can remember. I can remember trips to the clinic before I was even old enough to go to kindergarten that were filled with complete terror. The nurse could offer me all the suckers or ice cream cones she wanted, none of it was worth getting a shot.

In my second year of law school I braved up after suffering through a year of some pretty bad flu spells, and went to the student center to get a free flu shot. As soon as I took off for the student center my palms got all cold and sweaty as I fought the fear to turn around and cower in a corner somewhere. When it was my turn to get my flu shot after arriving at the student center, I sat down and rolled up my sleeve for the nurse.

The nurse cleaned my arm and then stuck me with the needle. She then took out a cotton ball and held it over the newly created hole in my arm. That’s when she realized that my arm was especially white. She said, “Wow, I’ve never seen anyone with such white arms before.” She looked up at my face and realized what was going on. The color in my face had completely drained away and I was on the verge of passing out right there in the middle of the student center.

Thank goodness I’m mostly done with shots now, because it seems like kids these days get dozens and dozens of shots.  Today was Vivi’s day to get another four shots.

With the number of shots Vivi has already had, I would consider removing her from the amateur leagues or minor leagues and send her straight to the pros. Of course, I don’t have any firsthand knowledge that Vivi has ever received a shot, because I’ve never been there to see her get any.  I’ve been told Addie’s had all her shots, but those could all be lies for all I know.

There are two main reasons why I can’t bear to watch my kids get shots. First, I can’t stand to watch them cry and suffer the way shots seem to make kids cry and suffer. Casey had to physically pin Vivi to the table to get her most recent shots, and Casey came home completely frazzled and it pretty much ruined her day. I hope Casey got herself some ice cream on the way home from Vivi’s shots.

Second, I come very close to passing out when I see someone getting a shot. When I was in high school I took my little sister to get shots. I promised I would stand by her to help her get through her shots. As the nurse moved the needle towards my sister, I cringed and cowered into a chair in a far corner. On a positive note, my sister was so worried about me that she didn’t even think about the shot that was being given to her. On a negative note, I came across as a pretty big wimp.

With the psychological damage done to my wife that was caused by Vivi’s most recent shots, I’m guessing my streak of never seeing my girls get shots is about to come to an end. Being a wimp and a coward can only get one so far in life.

Oh, and because I felt so bad that Vivi had to have 4, count them, 1, 2, 3, 4, shots in one day, I manned up (is it acceptable to write that?) and got a flu shot today. The nurse said I was his only bleeder of the day and when my wife got her flu shot 20 minutes later, the nurse referred to me as the very nervous guy.

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