Momwithastethoscope's Weblog

September 26, 2009

Loving Pediatric Medicine – the anti-rant

Filed under: Office,pediatrics,positive medicine — momwithastethoscope @ 7:49 am
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Reason Number 27:  Patience

My residency director described me as zealous.  I was a bit taken back when he announced this at our graduation dinner.  To me the term meant militant maybe even with terrorist tendencies – Yikes!  Not exactly the touchy-feely pediatrician you would take your babies and children to, huh? On introspection with the help of Miriam – Webster, I’ve come to realize the postive aspects of being zealous – ardent, eager, passionate.  That impetuous side works well in emergencies and in critical care settings, and knows how to prioritize information and tasks.

Yet most of pediatrics is not emergencies, and I have had to learn the fine art of patience.   Parenthood has taught me to slow down and wait, but medicine, pediatrics, and patients – despite the breakneck speed of practice – has drilled lessons of composure into me, too. 

Patience is waiting for a toilet-training two year old to return from the bathroom.  It is letting a parent tell his or her reason for the appointment in more than 20 seconds before interrupting.  Patience is knowing that Roseola takes a big fever before declaring itself with a rash.  Patience is waiting for a phone call from a subspecialist.  It is coaching a reluctant patient through an ear examine, throat swab, or suture removal.  Being patient is embracing flexibility and letting the day flow.  Patience is gentleness. presence and listening. I hope that’s how my patients remember me.

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