My son Joe showed up to his 7yo well-checkup with a fairly advanced urinary tract infection. Good thing they check that stuff, because he hadn't complained of any problems; and as he was pretty much independent in that area, I hadn't noticed any.
Long story short: After a few rounds of antibiotics, several months, a few sonograms, many follow-up visits and a lot of palaver, there was still blood in his urine. They then decided to do this test, which involved taking an x-ray of his bladder while full, and then he had to pee while they x-rayed the process in real time -to ensure all was working OK. The techs were two gentlemen of mature years; -nice men, but given to lots of platitudes and false joviality (is that a word? it is now). "We're just going to take a picture of your bladder, Joe. This won't hurt a bit".
Here was the problem: The bladder had to be full of s special x-rayable fluid. To get it in there... well, it wasn't ingested. They used a local anesthetic, but Joe still said it hurt. His concerns (and mine) were poo-pooed by the Overly Jovial Men. This was before I knew we have Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Type III. It is well documented that Lidocaine doesn't work too well on us. Poor Joe.
So they filled up his little bladder, took a few pictures, and then they wanted him to pee lying down. This insulted Joe's Autistic sensibilities hugely. He was a BOY! He didn't pee lying down like a baby! Thankfully the while contraption tilted, so they uprighted him while still on it, which freaked him out a bit (more). I can still see him standing on that table, naked, all 48lbs of him, shivering, goosebumply, and pale blue; trying to hold it together enough so that he could pee and get out of there. He did and I was proud of him.
The test was normal.
A few days later (I'm not kidding!), we went on vacation to the Jersey shore. On the very first night, Joe fell onto his head. I knew immediately by the scream that he was really hurt. The ER poo-pooed our concerns (they were closing!) and sent us home with he usual instructions: wake him every few hours and come back if he is unresponsive or starts vomiting -but only after they re-open at 10am (nice).
The next morning, there was obviously something quite wrong. He was completely white, refused to eat or drink and complained of a headache. On the way to the ER (10 minutes) he screamed at the slightest bump or pothole and threw up twice.
He needed a head CT. He had actually been doing really well with the whole hospital thing until an overly-cheery young female tech announced that she was "just going to "take a picture of his brain"
I don't know quite what he thought this might entail, but this was less than a week after the bladder thing, and I can only imagine his thoughts.
Joe lost it. He completely and utterly lost it.
He went into full "fight" mode, throwing Ninja punches and kicks (aimed to miss) that he had seen on the telly in her direction. She ended up backed against a wall, helpless. She was NOT amused.
So Joe was sent to the ER proper, put in a gown and left with me to try and calm down a bit. They wanted to sedate him for the CT scan, but there was a question as to whether he would allow them to run an IV without a fight. Given his stress level, I didn't think it was likely, so I gave them permission to restrain him if needed.
Restraining USUALLY means swaddled in a blanket and sat on (not really) by several nurses. Imagine my horror when a tall and tattooed young gentleman, built like a brick outhouse, with the muscles on his muscles bulging out of his scrubs, walked down the ER and asked me, "where is the the kid who needs to be restrained?" I gulped and pointed to Joe. I mean, honest to God! Talk about overkill! I think one of this guys arms would have outweighed Joe. He could have restrained him with one thumb! I explained to Captain Meaty -as I had to all the nurses- that Joe is Autistic and to take their cues from me. Thankfully, they listened. In fact they were really, really good.
It turned out that Captain Meaty was actually a complete marshmallow. He bonded with Joe over Spiderman and Pokemon. The nurse explained to Joe -in detail- how they were going to run the IV and Joe allowed them to do it. He didn't need to be restrained.
In fact, Joe was responding so well to this guy -now renamed Mr Marshmallow, that we decided to try the CT scan without sedation. Mr Marshmallow went into the room with him, stayed with him, and talked him though the whole thing. Joe stayed still, they got the pictures first time and we were all done. The CT scan was clear, thank goodness.
So now you know why Joe doesn't like x-rays.
In contrast, Grace had her first x-ray (chest) conducted with maximum niceness and minimum drama in a private after-hours pediatrician's office, which is still called "the skeleton doctor" In Grace parlance. She is always happy to go back there.
"Which doctor are we going to see?"
"The skeleton doctor"
First impressions last.