Being a mother comes with a whole new set of superhuman skills. The hair on the back of your neck stands up when you sense your child is in danger. Your heart starts beating faster if something is off. You find yourself pressing for more information. You just know that you aren’t getting the full story, even if you have no idea how you know.
One of the most infuriating positions for a mother is at a hospital or doctor’s office. There are so many times when you know that something is wrong but the doctor disagrees. Your mommy gut instinct is telling you that your child needs something more than what they are getting. You know that the way that they are acting is not their norm. Maybe you don’t have the medical intellect to diagnose them, but it doesn’t matter. You know that there is something wrong with your baby.
I had a few of these such encounters before I was able to find my voice. I had doctors dismiss me because there was nothing they could find that supported my feelings. At one time, I had a doctor remind me that he was the one with the fancy degree, and I was just a mom.
JUST A MOM?!
Are there any bigger fighting words out there?
What I wanted to do was yell back in his face: “You walk in here for FIVE minutes, take a cursory glance at my child and think you know it ALL?!”
But I didn’t. Instead, I used my own fancy set of skills, that of being an amazing mother, and put him in his place.
The next day was spent documenting each and every symptom that my son had. I graphed it alongside an accounting of my child’s daily activities and meals. Then I searched online for credible medical sources to back up my thoughts as to what was going on with my baby.
After I was done, I printed off the relevant articles, shoved the stack of pages into my diaper bag, and hauled my kid back into that doctor’s office.
That doctor realized his mistake. What he had deemed behavioral issues was actually a gluten and lactose intolerance. He had underestimated the power of a mother. He put his education above an innate sense of instinct that only a mother possesses. At the end of the appointment, he saw the error of his ways and my son started on the path to recovery.
Not only am I sure in the fact that the doctor will think twice before he ignores a mother’s intuition, but I also know that I will never have another instance where I hide my true feelings, my personal opinions or my gut instinct in regards to my child.