We’ve all had tough days. Sometimes you see them coming and sometimes you don’t. I had Monday pegged for a tough day. We scheduled the girls for their annual school physicals. We spent most of the morning prior to the physicals speculating about who would get shots and who would get finger pokes.
The girls, pretty much unanimously, had decided that entire trip to the doctor’s office would be much more enjoyable for not only themselves but also for me if shots and finger pokes were avoided altogether. We had an absolute epic set of physicals back in ’07. They will forever be the benchmark for unsuccessful school physicals.
I don’t miss getting shots. When needles appear in doctor’s offices cheering is not among the options I consider. Cutting the power and escaping in the darkness is one…throat punching the medical professional administering the shot sometimes crosses my mind…the Vulcan neck pinch is sometimes helpful.
The girls are older now and shots, while still scary, aren’t paralyzing like they used to be. Finger pokes, for some reason, have also slid down the scariness rankings. Not sure where they rank anymore but its below shots…and probably broccoli. And bees.
Anyway, in addition to being school physical day, it was also Day We Find Out Who Is In The Girls Class This Year Along With Finding Out Who Their Teacher Is This Year. We have some extra time so I suggested we run by school and see if the lists are posted yet.
Two things here: 1) I have extra time in the morning. I know, Its weird. Does any parent react seamlessly to extra time in the morning? Maybe. But if they do they are some kind of hybrid robot/super parent. I really didn’t know how to handle it. We had a good 20-25 minutes. I think this is what happens when the girls are old enough to complete normal human functions on their in a relatively timely manner without being asked. Like getting dressed. And eating. Well, not always eating, but most of the time; 2) The class lists are actually posted at the school. Not on the school’s website. But on paper taped to the front door. Despite the inconvience, I kinda like it. Its old school. And old school is in direct contrast to the girls’ apparent inclination to provide their feedback or opinions on everything. I blame Twitter.
However, the lists weren’t up yet when we got to school so talked over the rules and expectations regarding the doctor’s office on our way there. They pretty much can be summed up as don’t fight and don’t run around. The last one was really just directed at Bailey.
We arrive, approach the door and then we see it – the waiting room is full. Two vacant seats and there are five of us. I’m not that good at math but I immediately sense a meltdown.
In an interesting quirk of fate, as I filled out and updated 6 forms, Bails was distracted by the fishtank long enough for another seat to open up. Amazing. But not as amazing as this:
“How do long do we have to wait?” an impatient Bailey asks.
“We have about 15 minutes or so.”
Then for the first time in recorded history, it happened. Eight minutes before our scheduled appointment I hear…
“Riley, Kinsey and Bailey?”
Woo Hoo! Holy Freaking Crap we’re getting in early!
First thing is height and weight followed by a vision test. Should be simple. Except getting Bails to stand in one place long enough to measure and weigh her isn’t easy. Plus the girls had to negotiate who would go first for each thing. Rye for weight and height. Bails for vision. I told Kinsey that meant she went first for shots.
She didn’t find it funny.
We’re led back to our room and the nurse goes through a list of questions for me regarding each girl. Then she directly asks Rye some questions. Rye turns 12 in December. She’s going into 6th grade. I wasn’t ready for her questions.
“Are you having any intimate relationships with other people?”
Rye looks quizzically at me until the nurse adds, “…with boys?”
I was unable to disguise my raised eye brow/eye roll/silent groan. Holy Crap. Intimate relationships? Most interesting thing regarding the question was the matter of fact, without any hint of embarrassment way Rye answered the question. In front of me. I guess that’s good. Or at least I’m going to tell myself that its good.
Then she asks Rye if she smokes, does drugs, gets in fights.
Except the nurse worded it as physical confrontations. Rye had no idea what she meant until she added, “…like with other girls?”
“What? No. Why? Like punching? No.”
Finally, the doc comes in. Normally the doctor’s arrival increases my stress level because it meant the shots were right around the corner. Not this time. I was relieved not to be answering questions about intimate relationships and girl fights regarding my 6th grade daughter.
“Okay, Riley it looks like you need a finger poke and…let me see…do you need shots…uh, yes…two.”
Instant shoulder droop from Rye.
“Kinsey, let’s see, it looks like just a finger poke for you.”
“WOO HOO! No shots! I was hoping I wouldn’t have to get shots. I don’t like shots. A finger poke still isn’t great, but its better than shots. Dad, I’m so happy I don’t have to get shots. Too bad Riley does, but I don’t! WOO HOO!”
The doc, taken aback by the spike in volume and excitement levels, begins looking through Bailey’s file.
“…and it looks like just a finger poke for you too Bailey.”
“Oh yeah! That’s right, no shots, uh huh, no way, not me, no shots!”
Three finger pokes and two shots later, we’re outta there. I’d describe them in greater detail except there isn’t anything to describe. They didn’t cry. Didn’t even whimper. There was some gritting of the teeth but that was it. I’m thinking, wow, can’t believe this day is going so well.
Mom comes by and picks them up from the doc’s office so I can get to work and she heads over to the school to check out the class lists.
About 30 minutes later I get a couple text messages.
“Bailey likes her teacher. Kinsey has Lola and Mallory in her class she’s happy. Riley is in tears.“
Rye’s three good friends all ended up the other 6th grade class. So she naturally responded by sobbing. Uncontrollably.
Have I mentioned how much I’m going to enjoy the girl’s teenage years?