Taking Things Too Far

Earlier last week I had the pleasure of taking Carter to the doctor.  He was in need of a couple immunizations before we could get him registered for kindergarten over the weekend.  I explained why Husband and I felt the shots were necessary and that while they hurt a little it was quick and would soon be over.  For a child I don’t think shots are ever quick enough.

It has been quite a while since Carter needed a shot and, while he acted nervous and played the part of a scared child, I think it was mostly for show.  I don’t think he really knew what a shot was.  That is until the first needle went in.  His eyes went wide and he looked at me, startled that I could allow this to happen to him.  Then he got the second shot and the tears started.  The nurse and I had to practically hold him down so as to put the band-aids on.

The nurse murmured her goodbyes and left the room.  Carter did not want hugs nor did he want words of comfort.  He kept his distance from me and did not want to talk about it.  I tried to give him his space which was not all that hard for he stormed out of the room, stomped down the hallway, and outright refused the typical consolation prize of a temporary tattoo from the basket by the door.

He was a storm cloud in size twelve Jedi Sith shoes and a blue puffy jacket.  He refused to hold my hand across the parking lot, yanking his hand out of mine and gripping my jacket sleeve when I told him he needed to hold on to me for safety.  We got to the car, I buckled him in, and took a couple deep breaths before getting in myself.  As soon as I turned the key and the engine came to life, Carter started talking.

carter:  Stanley?  (Stanley is the name of our Subaru and he can only talk while his engine is running, of course.  I should state at this point that for the past several weeks Carter and I have played a game with a troll statue who stands on our fireplace mantle under the cover of leaves of a large potted plant.  The troll and Carter have had wonderful conversations about an array of topics.

Carter and the troll

Here is Carter reading a story to Troll while Troll sports his paper party hat.

For the record, I am the voice of the troll.  I am also the voice of Sock Monkey and, most recently, Stanley the car.  I have been getting a complex about this lately for Carter is quite comfortable talking to Troll, Sock Monkey, and Stanley about things such as Dexter, our dog’s, death, and how he misses Dexter, Rosy and Grandpa, but he rarely talks to me about these things.)

stanley:  Yes?  (Stanley’s voice sounds suspiciously like Sock Monkey’s voice but Carter has not noticed this).

carter:  My arm hurts!  I got two shots and it hurt and it made me sooo mad!  I have two band-aids, one is orange and one is yellow.  Stanley do you get shots sometimes too?

stanley: Nooo, I don’t get shots but just yesterday I hit a pothole in the road and hurt my wheel.

carter:  Immediate sympathy.  Stanley?  Which wheel hurts you?

stanley:  My left front wheel.  It sure does hurt.  I wish I had a band-aid like you.  Did the band-aid make your owie better?

Carter went on to tell Stanley of all that transpired behind the closed door of the doctor’s office.  He confessed that the band-aids did help him to feel better.  Carter then asked me, not Stanley, if when we got home we could put a band-aid on Stanley’s left front wheel.

Carter and Stanley bandaid Collage

And that is how I ended up driving a car around town with a band-aid on the left front wheel.  I have to admit that the band-aid on the wheel came in useful when it was time to remove Carter’s two band-aids.  Stanley was quite brave during the removal (perhaps because his engine was off and therefore he could not scream), making for a good role model for Carter.

I really am all about play and imagination but sometimes I wonder if putting band-aids on car wheels is taking it a bit too far.  What do you think?

Carter and the two bandaids

About Shoes

I am an elementary school teacher, a former microbiologist, a mom to a herd of two boys, and a grilled cheese sandwich and beer connoisseur.
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36 Responses to Taking Things Too Far

  1. I don’t want you to think I am ignoring the actual content of this post because I love so many aspect of it BUT I have to tell you another parallel life thing!!!!!!! Our car’s name is Stanley too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • shoes says:

      Am I the only one of us hearing the music from the Twilight Zone playing in the background? How can that be? Please don’t tell my your Stanley is a Subaru too.

      • Nope – the coincidences stop there – he is a Honda Element. And, by the way, if you didn’t put the band-aid on the car, I would have been disappointed. Meet your child where they are at! How wonderful to process a scary time with him how he needed to process it!!

  2. Geoff says:

    I would do the same thing…. Ah, perhaps that’s not reassuring to you…

  3. mimijk says:

    I think it’s perfectly appropriate that Stanley wear a bandaid (and that picture of Carter is priceless!!!)

  4. barbtaub says:

    Love the story and the pictures! (Of course, I did band-aid a graham cracker together once…)

  5. Definitely not taking it too far! I think it’s sweet and if it comforts your little guy when he needs it, then there’s definitely nothing wrong with that. Can the next post include a clip of a conversation with Stanley, Sock Monkey or Troll? I have a feeling it might be quite the entertainment. 😉

    • shoes says:

      He really seems so comfortable talking with these creatures, it is pretty funny.

      Hum, I have never taken a request and writen a post from it. Perhaps I will try my hand at providing you a bit of entertainment from a Carter and Troll conversation.

  6. So sweet!! We got our pre-K shots last Thursday, same deal. He HATES doctors, for some reason. We got him a doctor’s kit for Christmas, so this time he was ready to go, kit in hand. But he made the doctor play patient first, doc went along, and shots weren’t as much of a problem as we anticipated. Way to go, Carter! Love the band-aid on the tire. I like how he thinks.

    • shoes says:

      That sounds like one great doctor! I am glad the kit and having the doctor play patient helped with his fear of the visit. Shots can be pretty scary even if they don’t hurt all that much. I was very touched by Carter’s concern over Stanley’s injured wheel. Both Carter and Stanley have completely recovered.

  7. If I saw you driving Stanley around town with a band-aid on the wheel, I’d flag you down so we could be friends.

  8. Love the band-aid! If my kids were younger I would steal the idea from you – if i tried it now they wouldn’t let me drive them anywhere…which may be a good plan after all.

  9. my27stars says:

    How sweet of you to put a band-aid on Stanley for Carter! Not taking it too far at all. We’ve put band-aids on his bedtime buddies to help ease those ouchies. 🙂

    • shoes says:

      For some reason I don’t think I have band-aided anything other than the car. I have stitched stuffed animals, making quite the production out of their surgery and recovery and I have tied paper towels around stuffed animals appendages when I am too busy (or too lazy) to get out my needle and thread but never a band-aid. It did make Carter feel better about the whole thing so I am glad we did it.

  10. Definitely not too far, in my opinion. I love that he could tell his problems to Stanley, and that he and Stanley could empathize with each other.

    • shoes says:

      I was wondering if I was going a little batty during the band-aiding of the car but it made Carter feel better so I simply went with it.

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

  11. Sweet the way you can talk like this and that Carter can reveal his true feelings.
    I hope the wheel is feeling better. Nice.

  12. Jodi says:

    I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again, you have two lucky little boys.

  13. No such thing as taking it too far when little boys are communicating, or when they’re showing concern for others…I read somewhere (and my personal experience bore this out) that boys are better at talking when they’re involved in something else alongside you, rather than looking at you and talking, like girls do…or, yelling, if we’re talking about my daughters…
    The bandaid on the wheel was perfect, by the way 🙂

    • shoes says:

      That is an interesting thought and I think you are spot on. Both of my boys clam up when I try to talk to them face to face about how their day went or how they are feeling but if we are building a marble maze or a snap block robot the conversation comes so much easier. Carter is really into talking to Troll these days and I find that I learn a lot about him from these exchanges.

  14. I think a band-aid on Stanley is fine! It is good that he vented to the car about the doctor visit. Carter is adorable!

    • shoes says:

      It was very deliberate, him waiting for the engine to turn on so he could vent to Stanley. It is a good thing Stanley is a good listener and that he had a bum wheel so they could commiserate together. 🙂

  15. Rondy says:

    Not too far at all!!! What an awesome way to help him address his feelings in a way he feels safe doing it! Amazing parenting, taking the time to help him process his feelings and to really hear him!

    • shoes says:

      I am a little sad that he doesn’t want to talk to me about these things, but whatever works for him to get his feelings out. Thanks for the compliment – this parenting thing is not easy sometimes.

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