Monday, October 13, 2008


With school in session, I can take care of a lot of things I put off during the summer, things I don't want to have the kids around for. I'm thinking haircuts, doctors' appointments, the dentist. This has not always been the case. If you are an at-home mom with little ones, you have probably taken your kids lots of places you wish you hadn't. Even a trip to the grocery store can be a major pain.

I remember taking both kids to the gyno with me when they were little. This, of course, would not have been my first choice, but circumstances prevented my getting a sitter that day and off we went. Now a pregnancy visit is one thing-- pee in a cup, the weigh-in, a little feeling of the tummy. This was an annual exam.

The waiting room wasn't bad, although I wonder if a few of the pregnant women were self-righteously thinking, "MY kids will never act like that!"

Does this happen to you? When the waiting room time is over, you think you're close to seeing a doctor, but instead you are tucked into a tiny examining room, told to strip, and then you wait for a seemingly interminable length of time. Maybe it just seems long because of the lack of pants.

When you are on your own, you can artfully fold your little pile of clothes on a chair, pull the paper robe around you and read old copies of Good Housekeeping. With an 18 month and a three year old in tow, you are simply on germ and damage patrol.

Keeping order in such a small space was nearly impossible for me. Within seconds, my neat pile of clothes hit the floor and Molly started caressing the Sharps container. When I got her away from that, she tried to lick the stirrups. Ugh. Three year old Jake was easier to restrain. Sure, at one point he opened the door to expose me in my paper-gowned glory to folks in the hallway, but I actually think that helped get the doctor in sooner.

During my exam, Jake asked, "Mommy, why does that man have his hand in your bottom?" Yikes. I quickly thrust an old National Geographic at him. "Here, read about the pretty zebras." My exam was brief, to say the least, and after the doctor's hasty retreat, I retrieved my clothes from the floor and began to dress.

Jake soon had another question, "Mommy, why are these people all bloody?" Yep, zebras may have been on the cover, but the magazine was documenting a massacre, in full color.

For those of you in the throes of toddlerhood and preschool, I wish for you unencumbered visits to the gyno, the dentist, and maybe even to get a pedicure. The day will come when you can do all these things on your own again. I know we aren't to wish away our kids' childhoods, but I think in certain circumstances it's okay.


Kate Coveny Hood said...

One of the perks of being a working mom. I can go to the pharmacy without having to reassemble an entire wall of vitamins that my children decide to demolish.

Gretchen said...

Whoa, okay, first off, when I find a doctor, my #1 criteria is how long is the wait time. I do not do waiting. If the office is not running on schedule, I'm finding me a new doctor. That is very disrespectful. If the doc is late because of a delivery, please advise me of that and allow me the chance to reschedule. Doesn't matter if you have kids with you or not.

And, secondly, if your kids were tearing up the room, it serves 'em right for keeping you waiting. You should TOTALLY let your kids play with the tongue depressors and the speculums. What does that doc thinks comes out of his area of specialty? That ain't a money purse in there - it's for growin' babies!!! He needs at least a few copies of Highlights or something.

Carla said...

Oh my. Been there. Made it out alive and taken puhlenty of vows to Never.Ever.Take.Them.Again. :)

I don't wish for my children to grow up so fast but there is that light at the end of a long tunnel...

Anonymous said...

Great meeting you at BLogHer :)

You won't believe this but Sunday I colored my hair (by myself) for the first time; I've been getting lowlights for the past few years because my hair is getting lighter as I get older and when it gets too light people start asking me if I'm sick or 'you look tired' :)

So it's perfect we met when we did- inch of gray :)

Shana said...

This is why God invented school. So that eventually we could run errands without our children in tow. I have no idea how the homeschool moms do it.

Anna Whiston-Donaldson said...

Me either! I feel so bad saying I would never want to do it, but I'd never want to do it!