Well Baby Visits and First Vaccinations

May 26, 2020, Hailey Cain

There is no 100% right way to do things when it comes to having a baby, and there’s no such thing as being 100% prepared. These are the thoughts in my head as I was heading to the market down the road from our house for the third time in one day.

Ever since first finding out I was pregnant, I was obsessed with doing everything “the right way,” like going to all my doctor visits, cutting out coffee, eating right, and taking prenatal classes. That obsession continued once Delilah was born, including going to all her well-baby check-ups.

My baby girl turned two months old on May 15th and we scheduled her two-month well-baby check-up for that day. I always have so many questions for the pediatrician, especially when it comes to Delilah’s eating. I’ll ask my family first, but I don’t feel better until I get to talk to the pediatrician. At Delilah’s one-month well-baby visit I told the pediatrician that coming to the well-baby visits were comforting for me.

Recently, I was reading posts on a forum on the pregnancy app Baby Center. It’s comforting to read others’ posts even though I don’t actively post because I have a lot of the same questions. The forum is a way to read a ton of other moms’ opinions about a certain subject. The post that caught my attention was about how some parents were doing video visits or choosing to skip or postpone the well-baby check-ups for their babies due to COVID-19 concerns.

At Delilah’s two-month appointment, I brought this up to the pediatrician and she told me the same thing. She said that many parents have cancelled their well-baby check-ups or opt for video appointments instead.

I know that a lot of questions can be answered in a video visit, but I just feel so relieved when Delilah is weighed and I can see where she is on the growth charts. That way I can see visually that she’s eating enough and growing as much as is needed. And I feel comfortable bringing Delilah into the office because from our first visit I have seen the pediatrician’s office taking all the necessary steps to keep their patients safe.

Delilah’s two-month appointment also meant it was time for her first round of vaccinations. The night before, my cousin, who is mom to an 18-month-old daughter, told me how hard it is to watch when babies get shots, and warned me that I was going to cry.

But at the appointment, I wasn’t thinking about her shots at all. I was too worried about remembering all the questions I had, plus trying to mimic for the doctor the weird sound Delilah was making while she eats. Unfortunately, I left my phone that had the video of her making the sound in the car.

First, Delilah was weighed and we found out that she weighs almost 11 lbs. They gave us a picture book that Delilah loved and we looked at it while waiting for the doctor. It had a black and white picture of a slide that just made her smile so big. I guess we’ll be getting her a slide in the future! The shots were the last part of the appointment, after we met with the doctor and I asked all my questions.

I decided to hold Delilah in my lap for the shots so she was more comfortable.  I didn’t cry but I did have to close my eyes super tight, like I used to when I was a kid getting a shot. Even with that I almost cried; it’s hard to hear her cry like that. After the shot we gave her the rest of her bottle and she calmed down pretty quick and slept the whole drive home.

Later that afternoon she was fussy. Looking back, I’m so upset with myself for not being prepared. I didn’t even think about her little legs hurting later and that we would need Tylenol. I didn’t even put two and two together when they gave me the dosage chart at the doctor’s office. We didn’t have any infant Tylenol at the house so I had to run down to the market down the road – I literally ran!  When I got back home we realized the medicine was expired, so I ran back to exchange it. But the store only had a different size that cost a little more and I had left my wallet at home. Thankfully they let me take the medicine so Delilah didn’t have to wait any longer, but after that I had run back to give them the extra $2.39.

Once we had given her the dose of infant Tylenol, Delilah started to feel better and was less fussy. She just wanted to be held and nap. We declared it a lazy day and spent the rest of the afternoon having much needed cuddles.

Important Note: Tylenol is not recommended for infants under 3 months of age unless directed by a health care provider. Make sure to check with your baby’s doctor before giving any medications!