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This week I took Summer for her 18 month-old check-up. I still dread those vaccination visits. I don’t mind the crying. Although the first time Rick and I took Dylan as a baby, all three of us were pathetically sobbing. Note to new parents out there: Hysterical moms and dads don’t really calm newborns.

No, I don’t cry anymore. I just worry. And frankly, I’m far more talented and experienced at worrying than crying anyway.

It’s the whole could-there-possibly-be-a-connection-to-autism-thing that just makes me queesy. But on the flip side, I’d sort of definitely prefer my kids not get polio or the mumps or the measles. Because that sounds like a major bummer. So I buried my angst and headed to the doctor’s office.

At which point I learned that I never brought Summer in for her 15 month check-up.

Or her 12 month check-up.

In fact, Summer hadn’t had any of her shots for 9 months. I know my friend Adam (the pediatric ER doc – aka the red headed George Clooney) is just shaking his head right now in disapproval. Oh, Adam. I’m not perfect.

Summer has been to the pediatrician 12 zillion times for chest congestion, coughs and colds. But apparently, I had forgotten all about those nifty “wellness” visits.

It’s kind of out character for me because I’m pretty insanely organized. So maybe the fears in my subconscious took over my appointment calendar. Anyway, we’ll will be catching up on her shots over the next month which is good old fashion summer in the city fun.

Meanwhile, 38 is roaring towards me like an Amtrak Acela train (without all the delays). I don’t even know why I give a crap about 38. It’s really her step sister 40 that I am truly afraid of.

I know, all of you out there who are already 40 are thinking, “Com’on Kelcey, don’t be such a friggin’ wimp. 40 is nothing.” And I’m sure I’ll feel that way on the day after my 40th birthday. Or at least, I will absolutely feel that way about 40 on my 60th birthday.

It just all goes so darn fast.

I still keep thinking that I’m going to wake up and be 24, sitting in a cafe with some friends, listening to Blues Traveler and not stressing about child immunizations or 40th birthdays.

Totally hasn’t happened yet. Strange, right?

Instead I will celebrate what 38 years has brought me. Things I dreamed of but could not have ever imagined at 24…

Oh wait. Scratch that. I mean, he was fun. But not that guy. I meant this guy and his girlie sidekicks.

mama bird notes
I really am ashamed of myself. WEEKS ago, the very funny site GoodMom/BadMom featured one of my stories on their Sunday Blog wrap up. You know that story I wrote about my atheist dad. Anyway, I never properly thanked them for the awesome honor. It’s embarrassing really. So please head on over and check out their site and I will rest easier tonight. Thanks to Jennifer H. for unintentionally setting me straight.

And check out our new mama bird poll. How would you feel about your husband going to a strip club?

27 Responses to vaccination angst

  • Jennifer H says:

    Kelcey, I can't organize my own life, but I'm thrilled that I could help you. πŸ˜‰

    I can't remember which of my kids it was, but I missed an 18-month checkup, and it wasn't caught until he/she got sick much, much later. The nurses were all tsk tsk about it. (Imagine their horror if they knew I can't even remember which child it was!!)

    You're doing fine.

    Me? I hit 40 in a few months. My way of dealing with it so far involves putting my fingers in my ears and singing lalalalalalala. Plus, I suppose I should subscribe to More magazine, right? Crap.

  • My little one, missed her 15 month, because we were in for other reasons as well. This week she'll go for her 18 month. Sometimes I think all those visits are a bit much!

    Fyi, you should look into a delayed vaccination schedule, they still get them all, just not so quickly. It's more spread out.

    And for your birthday, you look great and obviously have wonderful things happening in your life, so CELEBRATE!

  • Nat says:

    Don't sweat the small stuff, once the vac's are caught up it will be a distant foggy memory.

    The 40th I also thought was a big deal but looking back (I'm 41 so I don't have to strain too much) 30 was more of a jolt than 40. At 40 I still feel the same, act the same etc, but now I seem to feel a whole lot calmer and laid back about things. I don't know why, it is just so! Enjoy it, ignore it, whatever takes your fancy, but don't fear it.

  • Abby Siegel says:

    As a recently turned 38 year old it really isn't a big deal. I was looking at some photos from my earlier 30s and I still look the same so I'm ok about it. I don't want to turn 40 at all but I have promised myself an extremely fabulous dream trip to Africa so I have that to look forward to. Plus a new decade is like a do-over and a fresh start so maybe think of 40 that way.

    Anyway, I knew you 22 years ago and you still maintain that youthful look and air about ya, so don't stress too much and have an amazing birthday (and 20th anniversary of our high school graduation!!! HOLY SHIT!) on Sunday!

    Ok, just freaked myself out. I know our reunion is in October but on June 22 it will be TWENTY YEARS SINCE WE GRADUATED. OMG. Remember how freaking how it was that day? I thought we would melt on the field. Good times.

  • Rhea says:

    Congrats on your award! And the upcoming birthday!! AND, don't feel bad about the well visits. I've done that before. It happens! My poor eleven year old had to get FOUR shots his last visit but now he's done for quite a long time…

  • misty says:

    in your defense, when your kid goes to the doctor repetitively for illness, who the heck wants to take them there for wellness?

    I still hate baby shots. πŸ™ (And me shots for that matter)

  • wa says:

    Yikes. Nobody likes shots. Including the nurse at our pediatrician's office who now has to wear a wrist guard because of her injuries from holding down kids to give them their vaccinations.

  • Jen says:

    Same Dr. situation with Parker…we were about 2-3 mos. late on her 15 and 18 month appts. Better late than never right! How funny, 2nd kid syndrome. I was the baby of 5 and I can just imagine how my parents forgot about my checkups (among other things…)

  • Erin says:

    You don't look a day over 24! Well maybe just two days but that's IT! Seriously, you look great! I've never seen the pouchy belly you talk about and you even leave your Spanx at home! I'm freaked out about vaccinations too, but like you said I wouldn't want my kid to get polio, measles or mumps either. Sorry Summer has to get all those shots this summer, never fun.

  • E says:

    I never give sick kids shots and I am on a very delayed schedule for all three. But I was recently working in an ER and saw a kid with the mumps. Yikes. It inspired me to make and appointment.

    On my husband's 40th he pulled a neck muscle reading the paper in bed which set off a deep malaise. But in the 7 years since then I have watched him get in better shape, enjoy life more, make more money, and above all be a great dad and husband–so I don't think 40 can be that bad.

  • sam says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHICKIE!!! the good news is that you LOOK like you are 24 so that is really what matters. also 38 is the new 28. 39 for me soon and that seems soooo wierd like i'm older than my mother or something. anyway, life gets better and better because i get wiser and wiser and am able to appreciate it all so much more. so if i have some bags and troughs under my eyes and my bum is migrating kneeward, who cares, i wouldn't trade it for anything! plus (and i find this extremely comforting) we are all getting older together! love you and your hot 38 mama self!!

  • susan kintner says:

    Congratulations on looking as good today as at 24, enjoying life as much or maybe more, being much wiser, actualizing everything for which you yearned at 30, having a great sense of humor, professional and parenting talents, a commitment to things about which you care deeply and tenacity to follow through. And not to worry, your children will forgive you for forgetting those mysterious magical medical moments that you miss! Happy Birthday and live well, laugh often and love much. momala

  • Jessi says:

    Thanks for the reminder of how grateful I am for not having to deal with vax again for another 2.5 years. (But we do make the kids get the flu shot and my daughter has to get a pneumonia shot….so I guess in all reality, I'm right there with ya)

  • ErinB says:

    You have a great deal to be proud of in all you have accomplished in these last 38 years so be sure to celebrate celebrate celebrate! Can't wait to see what you do in the next 38 :-}

  • Lanie says:

    I think that worrying (and crying) come with parenting – no matter what you do. . .HAPPY BIRTHDAY Kelc!! πŸ™‚

  • Tommy-Tom says:

    Perhaps you inherited the missed shots gene. I just wrestled Zipper to the vet and was carefully informed that "Cats should really have their first distemper and feline lukemia shots at a much younger age."

  • Buffy says:

    first SHAMELESS PLUG: check out my website *ahem* better now

    I cry more when I have to take the littles to their wellbaby appointments than when I take them to their actual sick child visits. For those I am all business. What gives? I think it's because I feel like I am tricking them: "Oh yes! Look at your darling smiley happy face…haha…walky walky into decorated roomy..no no this won't hurt when we stab 3 or 4 or 5 times in your precious fat hammies… BWAH HAHAHAHAH!"

    Now when they're sick already what could possibly feel worse?

  • Aimee says:

    First off a very HAPPY 40th–I mean 38th birthday rolling into Grand Central soon! It doesn't matter the number–I think we all have a mind stuck at like 23–Our body shows our age–but our mind plays no mind! You are hip and fun–nobody will ever care about the 3 and the 8!

    Also–I worry about the autism thingy too. With Rylan having some delays I wonder if it could've been prevented had I been more well read on shots–then I became well read and I worry–I just hope he makes it to 3 unscathed and then I can think–ahh why did I worry so much?

  • Pearl says:

    Vaccinations are one of my current obsessions. I have read Dr. Cave's and Dr. Sears's books on the subject. I am still confused. Part of me wishes I would have skipped all of the shots and part of me thinks I should keep going with the AAP schedule. Baby's 12 month "well" check is coming up and I think they have something crazy like 6 shots scheduled. ARRRG!

    Happy upcoming birthday!

  • Damselfly says:

    Hey, what's the deal with those well visits? Am I the only one with a pediatrician who doesn't send reminders out for those appointments, or that the pediatrician M.O.? All of my doctors — and the vet — send me little postcards when it's time to schedule an appointment, but not the baby doctor.

  • Cathy says:

    I totally feel your pain with this post. I turn 37 next month and AM NOT looking forward to it. I don't know why, just not.

    Also, I have a son with autism, so the vaccination thing is a big deal with me. However, autism does run in my family, so my take on vaccines is if you're genetically predisposed to autism, then all those vaccinations may be a bad thing. But there's a lot of bad stuff in the environment, too, that may be causing the rise in cases of autism. I think it's a combination of genes and environment.

  • Nap Warden says:

    I did the exact same thing…How is it that I missed the 15 month well child visit? I am so on top of this stuff, and yet 15 month came and went without me even noticing…Being a Mom is hard.

  • francine Kasen says:

    Mke's first 2 word sentence of his little life came at me from the back seat of my car while driving on errands. I heard a plaintive wail "MOMMY, FEET HURT !" I hadn't taken him for new shoes for about 4 months! They don't wear out at the ripe old age of 14 months, and he had been curling his toes under as I slipped them on each day. I don't remember where I was headed at the time, but we made a bee line to the shoe store and he had grown like 3 sizes since his last pair!!! I felt awful….but still told Mike on the way home,"don't tell Daddy " . Hey, here I was a full time Mom and blowing the job! Good news…Mike DOES walk funny, but it's just like his DAD !!

  • Dixie Chick says:

    This is my year to turn 40. It feels like a big deal. I announce it to everyone I know. I'm going to be 40 in August and I'm embracing it ALL year long. I completed a mini-triathalon in May to mark the occasion. It felt good – so the bike pictures, I can relate to. As well as slapping on a real swimmer's suit with back cut out (and back fat hanging out) but I did it!

    Also, I fretted about my youngest's MMR shot and hesitated. She had already had them!!!

    Happy Birthday!

    Also, I really am embracing 40 and everything that I have learned in the last 2 years. I wouldn't trade the lower metabolism, crow's feet, dimples in my legs for any of that!!

    Have fun in Hotlanta – I'm in hot Baton Rouge.

  • mackbeth says:

    Kelcey – I have heard that you can stretch out the 'live' vaccines chicken pox and one other one and just don't do those together. I held off one of the 15 month shots until 18 months and another until the 2 year. I think the 'live' vaccines are more of a concern. It is worth a suggestion to Mr. Clooney. My alternative doc nodded and approved.

    I am on the 'lalalalala' train for my 40th also. I am waiting to have that "let's throw a rocking party because it is GOING TO HAPPEN" but so far….no sense of humor or fun is taking over. I have voted to bury my head in the California sand with my 3 charming boys…I'll come home 40 and no one will ever know! Except for me, my husband and my entire family!

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kelcey kintner