A (Gentle) Giant Difference Between Them

, , , , , , | Healthy | February 8, 2018

(My younger sister and brother are due to get their polio vaccinations. Despite being two years younger than her, my brother is several inches taller and 40 pounds heavier than our sister. But, as she’s older, she gets to go first.)

Mom: “She has a fear of shots, just to warn you.”

Nurse: “Oh, that’s no problem. I know nobody likes shots.” *turns to my sister* “Now, I’m just going to clean the skin on your leg for the shot.”

Sister: “It’s cold!”

Nurse: “Yes, it is. But it will warm up again in a minute. Now, you’re just going to feel a pinch…”

(My sister sees the needle and flips out, screaming, crying, and flailing. She even manages to kick the nurse in the face before my mom is able to hold her down.)

Nurse: *finally gets the shot in* “I’m sorry, sweetie. I know that hurt. I promise, if you relax, shots don’t hurt so much. Would you like a sucker?”

(My sister won’t stop crying; she’s in full panic mode.)

Me: “Mom, if you want, I can take [Brother] to another room and help him get his shot.”

Mom: *still trying to control my sister* “Please, do.”

(I gather up my hefty little brother and follow the nurse to the exam room next door.)

Nurse: “Go ahead and put him on the table, please.”

Me: “Sure thing. Here you go, buddy! You doing okay?”

Brother: “Yeah.” *with the implication of “why shouldn’t I be?”*

(The nurse looks him over, and then leaves without a word. A few minutes later, she comes back in with not one, but three orderlies, all strong-looking men, to hold my brother down. One orderly stands behind him and holds his arms around my brother’s arms and torso, while the other two each secure a leg.)

Me: “He’s not going to go crazy like [Sister] did. He’s our gentle giant, I swear.”

(The nurse ignores me, cleans his leg, and then counts to three for his shot.)

Brother: *frowns* “Ow.”

Nurse: *stunned* “Ow?”

Brother: “That hurt. Can I have a sucker, now?”

(He didn’t so much as twitch, and he accepted his treat with a smile. [Sister] was still crying a river, and didn’t stop until we were halfway home.)

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