When I got home from work yesterday I had a chance to speak with my neighbor who's son is the same age as Michael. J and Michael are only a few days apart in age, and they also see the same pediatrician. It turns out, that J and Michael double teamed the Pediatrician on Wednesday, with appointments only 15 minutes apart. From the sounds of it, the Pediatrician didn't have a very good day either.
I high-fived J for being his ornery little 4 year old self. It made me feel a little better. It's petty, I know, but I'm just keeping it real.
J's mom was surprised at how the doctor spoke to me. She never speaks to her like that. I'm not surprised, J's mom is a bit firmer than I am and must be more in line with what the doctor thinks is appropriate parenting.
That got me thinking. I wonder just what the doctor thinks I'm like. Clearly she has formed an opinion of my parenting and felt it was appropriate to coach me on how to do a better job. I'd like to suggest that judging someone's parenting, or what their child is like, based off of 15 minutes of behavior is probably a bad idea. In fact, I'll go so far as to say that it's arrogant.
It's also pretty funny because I think it's fair to say that her read on me was not accurate. I am a permissive parent, to a point. There are times when I do let Michael negotiate with me. I know the doctor doesn't approve of that, but we have well established boundaries as to what Michael can, and can't negotiate. Riding in a car seat, going to bed, being respectful to others...not negotiable. Where he would like to go for a family outing, negotiable. It's not an either or situation, and every parent will find a different balance with every child. I think she thinks that I just let Michael do whatever he wants, which is certainly not the case.
The other thing that I think she judged poorly was my ability to follow through on my threats. Several of her comments were about consequences and consistency. I think she would be very surprised to know that I'm very adamant about this and one of my primary parenting quotes is, "Don't threaten it if you don't want to follow through." I do this all the time, even when Michael cries, even when he screams, and even when he tells me he's not going to be my friend.
I'm sure I'm going to mull over this a little more, but I feel like I've pulled he goodness from the situation, and can ditch the rest. I've also decided that I will avoid scheduling with her if possible. She's a very good doctor, and it's a shame that she's not a good match for my family, but at this point I'm primed to go off on her, and anything she says will be a potential target. No need getting booted from the practice when there are other doctors that are good as well.
The good thing about this is the timing. I could really use a distraction to get it off my mind. No need churning on negative thoughts when all they are going to do is tick me off. We will be leaving for Disney world in the next few days, and that should serve as an excellent distraction.
Along those lines, wish us luck with the travel. Michael has never flown before, so it should be an adventure. We are flying from Philadelphia International, which is not the easiest airport to deal with. But, we'll do our best, and hopefully make it in one piece.
This also means that I'm going to be taking a short blog vacation. I'll see you come June.