I took Annabelle for her blood work on Wednesday morning, and was very pleasantly surprised at how well she did. I have been dreading that for months, but it ended up being pretty quick and fairly painless for both of us. I took Annabelle into the lab/clinic just before lunchtime and we happened to be the only people there, so we went right in. The lady who took her blood was really experienced so she did really well with talking to Annabelle to keep her calm. Annabelle sat on my lap on that scary drawing blood chair, put her arms out for them to check her veins, I talked to her to distract her to look away from the needle and held her head in that direction, and before she knew it, it was over. She winced for half-a-second when the needle went in, but fortunately they just needed one little vial, so it was over-with very quickly.
Wednesday, on the other hand, was a different story...
Everything started out pretty good. The sonogram was first and Annabelle did awesome with that. She was very cooperative with taking her dress off and laying on the bed. The warm gel didn't bother her. She said that the sonogram thingy tickled her. She kept her hands behind her head. She rolled and took deep breaths on command. And enjoyed seeing and talking about the "Party in My Tummy" (that was SOOO cute!). Then came the VCUG, the part that I have REALLY been dreading since she had it done the first time!
During the first few minutes, it went pretty well. Annabelle put on her cute little baby-sized hospital gown with the teddy bears and beach balls on it, and I put on my beautiful "don't xray me" dress and neck accessory (Belle wanted to take a picture of it, so she did). We waited around for a little bit while they prepared everything, then the inevitable time came to put the catheter in. At first she did well with laying back and putting her feet together froggy style. She was wondering what the nurses were doing down there, but she obeyed what she was asked to do. She winced a bit when the first put the cath in, and wasn't very happy about the "bandaids" (tape) that they put on her to keep the catheter in place. She was pretty patient and did amazingly well with allowing them to put the big machine over her to take the xrays. Again, we watched the "Party in My Tummy" (which looked a LOT like when the "juice, in my tummy"), and she stayed pretty calm for about 20 minutes until she felt like she had to pee.
Once Annabelle informed me that she had to pee, the nurse ran to get the radiologist to come watch it. He was sort of an arse and said "She isn't full enough" upon seeing her bladder and seemed to be annoyed that she had told us that she had to pee already. Once he got there, Annabelle didn't want to pee because she was being asked to pee on herself while laying on a table with 4 people watching her, while for the past 3 months I have been telling her to hold it and only go in the potty. She was frustrated that I wouldn't let her get up and go to the potty. The doctor only waited for us to have her try peeing for about a minute when he declared "I have a presentation to give at the medical center. Call another doctor." as he walked out the door. Sorry to bother you, Arse (with a capital A). With an attitude like that, I'm glad another doctor had to come in.
So, back to playing the waiting game. I continued to stand at Annabelle's head holding the top half of her down and keeping her hands from wandering down to pull out the catheter, and before long Belle got so squirmy and irritated and the nurse had to pin her legs down too to keep the cath from coming out. We continued to encourage Belle to try to pee and had a few false starts, before she squirmed enough that the cath came out. Sigh! So the nurse had to call the other nurse in to help her put it back in. Good times.
Eventually they somehow got the catheter back in despite Belle's squirming and screaming. By this point she was screaming so much that he hair was starting to get soaked from the tears and sweating. It took everything I had to be strong for her and hold back my own tears, especially once she started telling me "I'm fraid Mommy" through her crocodile tears. Thinking back on it makes me cry now, but I had to be strong for my little girl so that she wouldn't be even more "fraid". These cries and squirms requiring 2 adults to restrain her continued for the next HOUR! I kept telling Belle "just pee Baby, and you'll be all done" and she kept responding with the most pitiful sounding "I wanna go potty!" and "I wanna go home!" and "I wanna take a nap!" and "I want a diaper!" and "Annabelle all done!" I asked them to put the big paper and plastic sheets that she was laying on on her like a diaper to see if that would help. It would start to, but as soon as she felt the wetness, she stopped. Finally, once her bladder was beyond full, the nurse went to get the other doctor since Annabelle was bound to pee any second. Again, we played the waiting game as she squirmed and screamed. She refused to pee! The doctor finally said that he couldn't see any reflux and he didn't need her to pee while being x-rayed. After an hour and 25 minutes, she was FINALLY able to get up and go pee on the potty!
It didn't take nearly this long last time, and though the screams were bad last time, I think this time put it to shame. The good news is that the doctor has determined that she doesn't have reflux and her kidneys seem to be healthy (although, I don't quite understand how she doesn't have any reflux since she JUST had the worst UTI that she's had so far just a few weeks ago), and we won't have to take these tests again in another year (THANK GOD!!!)! Hopefully very soon Annabelle will have the hang of pooping in the potty (she still prefers to do it in her diaper and holds it until she has a diaper on for napping or sleeping at night), so that the conditions for a UTI won't be there so much.
Like last time, instead of getting in the car to go home right after this torture, I took Annabelle over to Ben & Jerry's for some ice cream. This time she actually ate ice cream (not just a cone without ice cream... which she did have later too), and they took her picture again to put up on their board and slideshow. We'll have to go back soon so that she can see it. :)