After our less-than-successful dentist visit last week, The Boy and I both had anxiety over today’s doctor appointment. The obsession with being done by a certain time popped up again, and I had to explain in detail three times that we would likely not be done by 3:46PM, as there was a lot of waiting involved with a doctor appointment. Each time, he seemed even more anxious. I was expecting to be there for at least an hour and a half, maybe longer, and I was envisioning another meltdown.
We went a bit early because we missed our appointment last summer. I called to tell them I would be 10 maybe 15 minutes late, and whoever I spoke to on the phone was pretty pedantic with me, repeatedly telling me how important it was to be on time, and that they would have to reschedule our appointment. I was furious. Today, I was not going to take the chance of being a minute late, so we arrived about 20 minutes early.
Ideally, you shouldn’t do this, as this is more time for anxiety to fester, but I kept him busy with games of slappy, a new app on my phone, and plenty of cuddles (which must look pretty weird to others, this tall, lanky boy on my lap, but I really don’t give a flying fig – whatever it takes to dispel my son’s anxiety is what I will do).
Wonder of wonders, they were on time. Took us right in, and the nurse who did the prelim stuff was a PRO. She made a game out of everything, and The Boy was having fun. At the doctor’s.
The doctor came in, and she was quick and efficient, answering my questions, and allaying his fears all at once. And when she was done, The Boy said anxiously, “What time is it?” I looked at my phone, and it was 3:34PM! We zipped out of there, sucker in hand, and were home by 3:44PM.
We even discussed how our next two visits would include “pokes”, his biggest fear when going to the doctor. By the end of the conversation, he was telling me the reasons why “getting pokes” was important, and how brave he would be.
They were such pros. HE was such a pro. And I am very, very happy.
(Photo attribution: By Bart Everson (Flickr: Doctor’s Office) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons)