Amish Cook: Vaccinations make for trying day


I tossed and turned. The mental list was only getting longer. “This is ridiculous, why waste this precious time when I could be sleeping?” I asked myself. “Lord, you can remind me of everything I needed to remember in the morning.”

Soon after I drifted off to sleep, I heard a cry from Jesse’s bedroom. Hastening down the hallway, I quickly scooped him up to keep him from waking the other children. “You precious little fellow,” I mused, feeding him. Soon he was sound asleep. The bed felt oh, so good as I nestled down once more, pulling the covers up close.

One thing was sure, I felt incredibly thankful to know that Daniel would be going with me in the morning when we planned to go for vaccinations for the foster children. Now if there is something that I just don’t like, it’s watching a needle being poked right into my little darling’s plump thigh, yuck; on the reverse side, I’m oh, so thankful for vaccinations, a means of controlling so many horrible diseases!

The next hour consisted of jumping out of bed soothing Elijah and talking to God between drifting off to sleep every now and then. Did he have a burp or was something else bothering him? At last, it was time to tackle my mental morning list. Daniel helped watch the children while I got everyone ready, packed Julia’s pink lunch box and made breakfast. For breakfast, we had one of Daniel’s favorites, fresh inner loin from the deer he shot a couple days ago.

Soon everyone was bundled up and the van driver, who we hired to take us to Robinson, had arrived. The 20-minute trip was uneventful; the children enjoyed the short trip. The first stop was at the doctor’s office for a well-child check-up for Jesse. All went well with him ranking in the 90th percentile on growth. They did mention that he has a little heart murmur, which they are not super concerned about, yet want to keep it monitored in the months ahead. Of course, my first impulse is to worry, but then what good does it do?

Next came my favorite store in town, a second-hand store. Mom had come along to help with the children, so the two of us browsed through it hunting for jackets, shoes and the like. (Yes, we do use some store-bought items, as such.) In the meanwhile, Daniel and Austin took care of other errands.

The health department came next in line. After filling out a couple papers, they informed me that both foster children are due for lead tests, which required drawing blood. Eek. The thought was almost more than I could bear. After listening to our questions about this test, the nurse kindly informed us that this procedure is done for all foster children and there is no way around it. I glanced at Daniel. In a time like this, I just “love him more than ever,” it just felt so good to let him make all these difficult decisions for me. “If it’s required, then that’s what we’ll do,” he said, sounding much calmer than I felt. As the nurse turned to go get everything ready, I stepped into the play area where Mom was watching the children and told her about it. “And you know, we can tell God about it. He’ll care for Rayni and Jesse, even if it is a painful process,” I said, trying to allow those words to soak into my own heart.

“That’s exactly right,” Mom responded.

After signing my consent and waiting another 30 minutes, we were finally ushered to the back with Rayni. The nurse was perfectly kind and helpful as we discussed all sorts of things in regards to Rayni, including her eating habits, which had improved tremendously since those first months after she came to stay with us when she hogged all the food she could stuff into her mouth. As the nurse got her little finger ready to prick, memories of a year ago when they did this for Rayni and her extreme screaming throughout the whole process swept over me. As you can imagine, Rayni has matured by heaps and bounds since then; everything went well.

Next came Jesse. Now he did have more of a rough time. Until he had his blood drawn and two vaccinations he was feeling totally inside out. By the time he had calmed down a bit, the nurse gently informed us that both foster children are also required to have a flu shot sometime this fall. Once more I looked at Daniel. Turning to the nurses, he asked, “We should do it right now?”

“That’s would be great, but it’s up to you.”

“Let’s do it, then be done with it,” he responded. Soon the pokes were completed. By then, Elijah was getting tired and wanted his mama. We juggled the babies back and forth as Daniel, my mom and I gave them extra loving and put Elijah to sleep. We had been in the office for two hours, and I was so incredibly ready for the children to just be home in their own familiar surroundings. As we finished up at the front desk, they informed us that we’ll need to bring them back in a month for another set of flu vaccines. My stomach turned a knot. “I’ll just take this moment for now,” I told myself.

Back on the van, the children were put in their car seats before heading for Walmart, our final stop before going home.

Mom stayed in the van and watched the sleeping boys as Daniel and I made a quick dash to Walmart to get a couple essential items. As I hurried toward the baby aisle, I spotted one of my church friends who has been a tremendous support for me since we got the foster children. As I gave her a brief report of our forenoon, I felt that indeed, my mother heart did feel more than I realized. Wrapping up my shopping, I thought to myself, “I’d better not meet up with her again, or I’ll go into tears for sure, and who wants to cry in Walmart?”

After returning to our home sweet home and everything leveled out a bit and Jesse once more flashed his charming smiles, I knew that all will be well.

Join us making these simple bars on a busy day like this!


2 cups flour

1 cup white sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 cups quick oats

2 eggs, beaten

1 scant cup olive oil

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Combine sugars with oil, add eggs. Beat and add remaining ingredients. Press into ungreased, 15-inch by 10-inch by 1-inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Do NOT overbake.

By Gloria Yoder

The Amish Cook

Gloria is Amish and lives in a rural horse and buggy settlement in Illinois. Readers with questions or comments can write to Gloria at P.O. Box 157, Middletown, Ohio 45042. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

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