Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A little sympathy

In case anyone was wondering, Thing 2 received a clean bill of health at her check-up today. Thank goodness for reminder phone calls! I am so glad I didn't have to reschedule - our pediatrician announced to me today that she is pregnant, and her schedule is rapidly filling up. She's really an inspiration to me. She already has three children, she has breastfed them all, and has a healthy pediatric practice (there's always a wait for well visits, which I take as a sign that she has plenty of patients). And she is always so happy!

Sorry to gush, it's normally my style. I think the real reason I love my pediatrician is that she has always made me feel like she's rooting for me and my family. When I met her, I was nearing the end of a difficult pregnancy, my husband was working in another city, and I had fired my doctor who was also Thing 1's doctor. At every subsequent appointment, she asked me how I was handling working and parenting without backup during the week. And she gave me suggestions for ways I could get the help I needed to get through the roughest parts of the day. It was she who brought up at Thing 2's first well visit how miraculously perfect she was, in spite of the rough pregnancy. I don't know if she's just really good at making notes on her charts, but I don't care. I think a good pediatrician should at least take note of the state of mind of the parents of their patients, and try to get to know them. This is important - if parents are stressed, children suffer. Besides, it's easier to get information from someone with whom you have a rapport. But the bigger reason, in my opinion, is that doctors should be partners with parents in raising healthy children. Because my doctor listens to me, I am much more likely to listen to her, and follow her advice. Besides, it made my day a little bit brighter to get a little bit of a pat on the back.

In fact, the day ended that way, too. My PI runs a monthly evening lecture series, with invited speakers from around the area. When one is scheduled, we labmembers are expected to help with set-up, and of course to attend the talks. I couldn't go to the one tonight, however, because hubby is out of town, and I needed to pick up the kids. When I let PI know that I wouldn't be able to stay, he said, "Oh, my wife just got back from a trip. It's so hard to do double duty, isn't it?" We shared a couple of laughs, then I walked out. As I walked, I realized that not everybody could expect that kind of interaction with their PI. Of course, I was bummed that I was going to have to miss the talks - they are usually pretty interesting, and I did choose to go to graduate school because I actually like science. Plus, I had a long night ahead of me. The last thing I needed was somebody bitching about the fact that I wasn't going to be able to stay. And because I didn't get that, I'm more likely to make that extra effort the next time it's needed.

And I just feel a little happier than I expected to this morning.

1 comment:

Amelie said...

Great that you have such an understanding PI.