Three weeks ago, Skeeter had her annual check up for her bladder reflux at our fantastic Children’s Hospital. These annual check ups cause much anxiety for both of us. Her first two visits to Children’s (a middle of the night trip to the emergency room and a three day hospital stay) mark the beginning of my struggle with postpartum anxiety. A friend of her godmother’s suggested that we talk to the Child Life Specialists before Skeeter’s ultrasound. This suggestion was an absolute godsend for Skeeter and I.
We had a Child Life Specialist and her intern come into the waiting room in Radiology. Skeeter was a little shy, but she opened up quickly. She talked to both of the women, and she immediately started playing with one of the toys that they provided. When the ultrasound technician came to get us, Skeeter hopped down from her seat and walked right into the exam room. The Child Life Specialist told Skeeter that her job was to sit very still and play with her toy so that the tech could take the special pictures of her belly that we needed. The Child Life Specialist and her intern spent about twenty minutes with us, and the ultrasound exam lasted ten minutes. I felt so much relief after the exam. I wanted to hug everyone – the ultrasound tech, the intern and the Child Life Specialist for making this experience so positive and soothing.
Skeeter and I enjoyed a quick snack between our radiology appointment and her appointment with our nurse practitioner in the Urology clinic. Skeeter could not wait to show off her potty training skills and went to the bathroom twice. After her appointment, we had lunch and then visited her daddy at work. Skeeter finally took a nap on her way home. When I carried her into the house, she woke up and said, “I had a tough day today, Mama”. I told her how proud I was of how she handled herself and how well she paid attention. I gave her a big hug and reminded her that she would get to have lots of fun at her dance class later that evening. I am so grateful for the amazing care that we received. I needed the comforting and soothing as much as my Skeeter did that day, and we were given compassion, patience and understanding.