Friday, October 19, 2007

a truly healthy heart

I brought Ezra to the lab at the children's hospital today for a blood draw to check his thyroid levels. We're going to be doing this every six months or so as he grows (to the extent that he's growing at all; see this post for some background), to see if his Synthroid dosage needs adjusting.

I didn't tell him ahead of time that this was our agenda; he had a day off from school and I didn't want to ruin the entire morning for both of us. Instead, I told him as we pulled into the parking lot, so there wasn't a whole lot of time to be pissed off and bummed out. And once inside, he was immediately distracted by a gigantic and wonderful kinetic sculpture by George Rhoads, just as he had been on the previous visit, and the one before that. It's like that, this sculpture; you really could just watch it forever.

I myself, however, got a little teary looking at him and thinking about the prospect of daily growth hormone injections for the next ten years, and the possible implications of that skewed liver enzyme level the last blood draw picked up, and also just how much I love this child and want him to be okay.

After the receptionist sent us down to the lab, Ezra started to get nervous. He told me that he was scared. I explained that sometimes when you're scared, things hurt more than they should; and sometimes the anticipatory fear is worse than the actual procedure. (Those were my exact words; no need to dumb things down for my five-year-old!)

He cried intensely for maybe 20 seconds after the needle went in, and then he quieted down. "You were right, Mommy," he said afterwards. "All I had to do was fold my breath, and it was fine."

(Just for the record, I hadn't suggested that he hold his breath--which is probably the worst thing to do, vis-a-vis breathing, in a situation like that--let alone suggesting that he fold it.)

The phlebotomist told Ezra he could get a toy from the treasure chest in the corner, and after carefully selecting one for himself and one for his brother, he said, in a very quiet voice, "I want to put some of my toys in here so other kids can have them. Is that okay?"

I said it was okay, and she said it was okay, and then he pulled out a couple of action figures he had stuffed into his pocket this morning and dropped them into the bin.

I kissed him on the forehead, told him that was a very thoughtful thing to do, and got teary all over again.

1 comment:

family-of-five said...

wow. what a sweet boy.