Today started off really well. Joshua and Patience went to Trader Joe's with me while my mom watched Garty at home. Having never been to a grocery store before, they were completely enthralled. Joshua pushed the cart and helped unload at the checkout while Patience wandered behind.
This afternoon was a different experience entirely. The older 2 kids had their first pediatrician appointments, and Garty needed to have blood drawn. My mom took Garty into the lab for his bloodwork while I chased Joshua down the hall when he decided to run away. He screamed as if being tortured for several minutes when I caught him. He finally decided to stop screaming and get undressed to be weighed when he saw how much fun Patience was having with the nurse. Meanwhile, I could hear Garty wailing. They couldn't find a vein, and they ended up needing 3 people (my mom, nurse, and doctor) to keep him still and draw enough blood. When it was over, Garty recovered pretty quickly and went home for his nap. Joshua and Patience behaved pretty well during their exams. Then the doctor left for a while and Joshua decided he really didn't want to stay for anything else. When the nurse came in to give vaccinations, Joshua freaked out. I had to use my body weight to hold him down while the nurse held his legs for 4 shots. He screamed terrible screams like I've never heard before and was crying for Peter. His screams got Patience screaming, so she was a mess before her turn even came. When it was all over, I was able to calm Patience fairly quickly, but Joshua continued to scream for 10-15 minutes. I just held him and rocked him to try to calm him. I finally got him dressed. We took a bathroom break and then went to the lab for bloodwork. This experience was also traumatic, but the kids actually handled it much better than the vaccinations. Joshua ended up getting poked 3 times because they couldn't get a vein. They got Patience on the first try after feeling her arms for a while, but they weren't able to get as much as they needed for all the tests they're going to run. They're hoping the lab will make it work so we don't have to do it again. Oh, and did I mention that I'm irrationally paranoid about needles? On a positive note, the kids got a ton of stickers due to the extended ordeal. Joshua came home with 8 stickers plastered all over his face.
For the rest of the day, the kids were really clingy and fussy and limping from the pain (real or imagined) in their legs. Joshua made it clear that he never wants to go to the doctor again. A lot of the behavoir they displayed tonight was reminiscent of the first 2 weeks we were together. I think the whole experience must have them feeling insecure again. We cuddled a lot before bed, and I'm hoping we all wake up better tomorrow. My arms are sooo sore from holding them through all their struggling. I'm hoping that's a reflection on how hard they fought and not how out of shape I am.
We'd appreciate your prayers this week as we deal with Papa being away. Other than today's fiasco, the kids seem to be handling the separation alright. The older 2 have been having some problems wetting themselves. It may be a random coincidence or it may be related to Peter's departure. It's a fairly common problem with kids who are frightened in these kinds of new circumstances, but I'm hoping it's nothing to be concerned about. Please also pray for Peter in Uganda. I'll try to post tomorrow about his trip. I'm pretty worn out at this point and don't have the energy to do it.