The Waiting Game

Monday was one of those days.  After weeks and weeks of unseasonably warm weather, temperatures dropped into the range that one would expect for mid-October.  To go along with that a cold rain was falling and it was windy as could be.  In short, it was the sort of day that you wanted to spend indoors curled up in front of a warm fire.

Unfortunately, that wasn’t an option for me.  Kaylee was scheduled for her 3 year checkup, so after we dropped the boys off at school we came home for a little more than an hour then headed out again for her appointment.  Normally I don’t let the kids take toys with them when we go out because that just invites opportunities to lose their toys.  But for some reason (I was feeling in a generous mood I guess) when Kaylee asked to take her new pony with her to the doctor’s office I said she could.  I also grabbed up our iPod as a back up in case we had to wait for any length of time.

I’ve touched on it before, but let me just say again: I absolutely love our pediatrician.  He has been so fantastic through the years that even though he’s moved locations two times in the 10 years we’ve been seeing him we’ve moved right along with him.  Not only is he a wonderful pediatrician his whole office is just amazing.  They very rarely keep us waiting more than a minute or two, and he’s got one nurse that works with him on a consistent basis that is just as awesome as he is.

So we blew in through the door about 5 minutes prior to our appointment and got ourselves checked in and settled into the waiting room.  Kaylee contented herself with clip-clopping her pony on the seat next to her and I began to play games on my phone to pass the time.  A couple minutes after our appointment should have started our normal nurse came to the waiting room looking for a family that had left a jacket in one of the exam rooms.  Not finding them she spotted us and came over to talk with Kaylee for a minute.

After she’d played with Kaylee she told me the real reason she’d stopped by.  Things were not going well that morning, and they were behind schedule.  I tried to wave her off and tell her it was no big deal, but she emphasized again that they were REALLY far behind.  She apologized profusely for being behind and offered to get me checked into our exam room but that we’d be waiting in there fore an extremely long time.  I told her not to worry about it and that we would be fine in the waiting room until they were ready for us.

Boy am I glad I did because she was not kidding.  It was over an hour before she came to get us for Kaylee’s appointment.  To be honest though the wait wasn’t really too bad.  Kaylee went back and forth between playing with her pony and playing with the iPod (I was so happy that she had both because after about 10 minutes she’d get bored with one and switch over to the other–so having both kept her engaged and entertained longer).  Plus knowing for certain that it would be a while and not wondering what the holdup was helped me as well.

Once we finally were called back we went straight to the scale where they take the kids height and weight.  It was there that it first hit me how big my little peanut is getting.  She sat right down on the floor and took off her shoes before moving over to stand on the scale.  She’s gone through this enough times that she already knew what they were going to ask her to do.

After that we moved to our exam room and went through the preliminary exam with the nurse.  I answered all the basic questions they ask at the start of every single appointment and then the nurse handed me a hospital gown and told me to strip Kaylee down to her undies and have her put the gown on.  That was the second time it hit me how big she was.  When they’re babies they just have you strip the baby down to their diaper and call that good.  But now she’s big enough that is no longer appropriate and they give her a gown to wear.  Thankfully once I put the gown onto her I was reminded that she still is little because she was swimming in the thing.

On her way out the door the nurse told me again that it would be a bit before the doctor would be able to get to us.  I appreciated the update and it really wasn’t a problem because now Kaylee not only had her pony and the iPod, but also the plastic dinosaur toys that our pediatrician keeps in his exam rooms.

After only a couple of minutes Kaylee, who has a great talent for doing this at the most inconvenient times, indicated she needed to go potty.  Lucky for me, this was not the first time she’d done this in the middle of a doctor’s appointment and so I knew right where the bathroom was.  Even more lucky, they’d put us into the exam room right across the hall from the bathroom (almost as if they were anticipating that she’d need to go…).

As we made our way to the bathroom I spotted our pediatrician making his way down the hall and thought he was heading for our exam room.  It briefly crossed my mind that Kaylee’s trip to the bathroom was just going to put him further behind schedule and tried to hurry her through the process.  Have you ever tried to make a 3 year old hurry when using the bathroom?  It’s not possible.  The more you try to hurry them the slower they move.  So after what seemed like an eternity we got back to our exam room, only to find that I was incorrect in my assessment.  The pediatrician was actually heading for the room next door and another patient.  I could barely hear the rumble of his voice through the wall which was the only reason I knew where he was.

So I settled back in to wait some more.  It was a good 30 minutes before the doctor finally made it into our room.  The first thing he did upon entering our room was apologize for the long wait.  While it wasn’t necessary, I appreciated that he recognized that he’d kept us waiting for so long.  And once he got there things really got interesting.

Kaylee was so pleased to finally have an audience other than me that she started being a complete ham.  She was trying to show off her pony to the doctor as he was going through some questions with me, and when that didn’t work she started showing of her ninja moves.  Finally he started focusing on her, and she was happy to show him what she could and couldn’t do.

He got to the point where he wanted her to show him if she could stand on one foot.  She got off her little chair and lifted her foot into the air.  Within seconds she fell over and collapsed into a heap on the floor.  He said that still counted and made a note that she could do it for a few seconds at least.  Meanwhile, on the floor, Kaylee wasn’t done showing that she could stand on one foot.

Sitting on her behind she lifted one foot in the air to show him that she could keep it up longer than just a few seconds.  The result being that she toppled over onto her side again.  About the time she fell over the doctor looked up from his notes to see her sticking her foot way up into the air.  He chuckled and told her that didn’t count.  (which is okay because she fell over anyway).

And that was the way the rest of the appointment went.  Any time the doctor asked Kaylee to do something she made a big show of it and tried to keep all attention focused on her.  Finally the doctor was finished and said the nurse would be in to administer a lead test (standard procedure for all 3 year checkups at our doctor’s office).

The nurse was back almost right away and distracted Kaylee by talking to her and getting her settled on my lap to do the lead test.  That’s what I love about this nurse, she’s very effective at getting the kids thinking about other things and by the time they realize she’s going to give them a shot or poke their finger she’s already done it.  Which was the case this time.  She’d poked Kaylee’s finger and had 2 or 3 drops of blood into her vial before Kaylee finally screeched “OWWWW!!  Dat hurt!!!”

Once she realized it hurt she started to cry and wanted to know what the nurse was doing with the vial.  I wasn’t about to tell her she was filling it with blood because if Kaylee realized she was bleeding it was just going to make her cry harder.  By some miracle I was able to convince her that the red stuff was paint and that the nurse was painting the tube.  You’ve got to love the gullibility of the average three year old because Kaylee bought it lock, stock, and barrel.  Once she thought it was paint she forgot all about the pain and indecency of being poked and was interested to watch the “paint” going into the vial.

After it was full they stuck a cotton ball onto her finger tip and wrapped a band aid around it.  My daughter is a very good bleeder (unlike my two sons who both took forever and a year to fill anything and had the poke mark scabbed over pretty much by the time they were done) and soaked the entire cotton ball within just a few seconds.  I double checked the wound to make sure there wasn’t going to be a problem but could see that it was finally starting to scab over.

After getting Kaylee dressed and ready to head back out into our dreary, miserable day she finally looked down at her hand and started to panic.  She held it up and said, “Mommy look, she got paint on me.”  Well at least she was just worried about the paint.


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