I took the boys to the doctor last week.
If you are my friend on facebook, you might know that I did this all by myself.
I don't know what it is about the doctor that intimidates me, but I haven't taken the boys by myself since they were in their infant carriers...and I only did that one time.
I have drug a lot of poor souls to the doctor with me: my mom, Neva, Kathryn, Elizabeth, Katelyn, Karen, Keitha, Dustin, even one of our NICU nurses, Amy, went with me to get shots last winter.
Even with two adults, I leave in a full sweat most times. It's a test of strength and stamina for sure.
But really...I hate having to depend on other people. They are my children after all...shouldn't I be able to take them to an appointment by myself? Shouldn't I be able to handle that?
Well...I'm here to say, that I did it.
It's liberating to just suck it up and face your fears. What's the worst that could happen? We have a complete meltdown and I load us all up and drive home? Big deal, right?
In case you might have a similar fear...here are my suggestions:
1. Let your children play with the waiting room toys. Eli and Landon have never had the privilege of touching anything in the pediatrician's office waiting room. But sometimes you have to choose your battles and wrestling two 18 month old boys for 30 minutes was not a battle I chose. They are still alive to tell about it, although they did develop a nasty runny nose about two days later. Coincidence? I think not.
2. Be confident and stay calm. Sometimes I get nervous taking them places by myself and guess what...they totally know it and they take advantage of it. They are like dogs...they smell fear. When I make a point to be confident, calm, and in control...they pick up on that as well and they respond much more favorably.
3. Take lots of ammunition. Snacks, sippy cups, books, and cars are lifesavers! This visit happened to be a longer wait in the exam room than any of our previous, so when those things no longer worked, I pulled out my repertoire of Bible class songs. That bought me another 7-8 minutes.
4. When all else fails...just let your kids run wild and make lots of noise (safely of course). After trying to quiet them and keep them sitting and happy in the exam room for about 25 minutes, I just gave up and let them run around like crazy banshees. Guess what...when all that noise started...we got seen pretty quickly. Coincidence? I think not.
5. I found that leaving was the hardest part. That stop at the checkout counter to schedule the next appointment was a doozie. By this point in time, you have used up all of your resources, patience, and strength. Pretty much anything goes here. Just remind yourself that victory is almost yours and the Starbucks down the road is waiting on you. Make it out the door with the most dignity and the least amount of sweat and tears.
6. Definitely reward yourself. That 1.5 hours just felt like 57, but it's all in the past now and that's all that matters.
And for my records...here are what my babies are up to:
23 pounds, 2 ounces
32 inches tall
19 inch head circumference
24 pounds, 12 ounces
32.25 inches tall
19 inch head circumference