Monday, January 15, 2007
I woke up not long ago from a panic-inducing nightmare. Apparently, pediatricians were tired of the constant parade of kids who may or may not have an ear infection, and decided instead to empower all of the moms and dads by insisting that we buy our own otoscopes and DIY. (Note - I had to look this term up. I am NOT a doctor is what I'm trying to say.)
Anyway, in the dream, I couldn't tell if what I was seeing in Andy's ear was wax, pus, fluid, reflected light, maybe some crumbs, or what. It was kind of terrifying. When I went back to my pediatrician, just like in the Don McLean song, he just smiled and turned away. Then he shrugged and said, "Mrs. Raggedy. If I keep doing this, you'll never learn. What do YOU think it is? Learn to trust your instinct."
I'm pretty sure I know why I had this dream. In real life, one of the pediatricians in the practice we use has the habit of offering parents a peek in the otoscope and saying, "Look at that. Do you see that fluid? That redness?" Unlike in the dream, however, he's the utmost professional and wouldn't leave me to flounder.
But to my untrained eye, I feel like saying, Dr. G., I'm here because I trust you. I have NO IDEA what you're talking about. Having never seen Ann's ear when there's no infection, what does it mean to me that it looks kind of yellow in there right now? It means NOTHING!
I've joked around with a friend who heard the same thing from this doctor. Is it ridiculous to ask moms to do this? Is it somehow empowering? All I know is I hope not to see the day when I've got my very own otoscope and have to make the call without relying on Dr. G.