*a virtual dollar for anyone who can tell me the artist of the song in the post title without Googling. If you can, you sir (or madam), complete me and I’ll be your friend for life.*

The Dormouse had her yearly checkup yesterday and given the last couple of weeks, I decided to have her get a flu shot so we wouldn’t have to go through that nightmare again. She’s always been pretty good about shots until age four. Four kicked our asses because we weren’t ready for the drama and trauma the four year old shots would cause. She had always been rather blasé about getting a shot in general and if she cried at all, it lasted a minute tops and all was right with the world again. I had no reason to expect anything else. But somewhere between three and four, the memory and anticipation factor increased ten fold. So after the first shot when she realized it hurt and then she could. Not. Bear. Another one. So she kicked, squirmed, yanked her arm back and screamed bloody murder through the next three.

So when I decided she should get a flu shot at this appointment, I prepared her before. I reminded her how awful she felt when she had the flu and explained that this shot might hurt for a minute, but she felt awful for days when she had the flu and it might be worth it to have a little bit of pain that would be over in a second rather than be sick for days again and feel as badly as she did.

Either what I said worked and I’m a great parent, or she just grew a year more mature since the last time. (probably the latter) Whatever, she was a trooper and didn’t even try to kick the doctor in the balls once.

So we finished the visit, told her how brave she was and headed out the door. I got through the waiting room, past the front desk, out the door and half way up the steps when I realized The Dormouse wasn’t by my side. I turned and looked over my shoulder to see her standing in front of the desk. “Cm’on,” I yelled, and turned toward the steps again.

She stood there.

"We're leaving."

She still didn't move.

Exasperated, I went back down the steps through the open door to grab her by the arm and drag her out of the office.

"But, Mooooomaaa...." she trailed off.


"I was braaaaaave!"

Suddenly, it occurred to me: the nurses usually give her a lollipop and tell her how brave she was after she has an appointment in which she gets a shot. She got a shot and she wanted her lollipop, dammitall. Even though it'd been over a year since she last got a shot, my little behavioral modification experiment subject had been taught that she deserved a lollipop and she was physically incapable of moving until she did.

Pavlov's dog, ring a bell?