This is Marie’s Mom, and if you don’t remember, she was a former patient of yours. She was diagnosed with macrocephaly at birth. When I was told that that was a big, fancy word for a big head, I didn’t think it was a big deal. The implications of that, along with a low tone diagnosis at 4months were when I realized that this was a big deal. That and the pediatrician recommended that she see a neurosurgeon for regular visits were a clue that something was not right. We discovered that she extra fluid around her brain (hydrocephaly) and was not sure if she would need a stint to drain it. We were not sure if she would have cerebral palsy because of her low tone. It was a very stressful time. At 9 months of age, she qualified for services. And that’s when you entered the picture as her first physical therapist.
She used to cry whenever you came over to work with her. You seemed to lack that gentleness that is helpful, if not necessary, to work with babies. It was hard for you to accomplish anything with her because she had a hard time not crying with you. You also asked me to leave the room since you attributed her crying to my presence, not your roughness and general crabby demeanor. Being a new mom, I stood in the kitchen peaking around the corner, watching my poor baby girl crying while you tried to execute your exercises. I endured that and a lot more because I was desperate for her to get better. However, what was most memorable about you is when you told me she would be destined to be a leaner because she would never have enough strength to always stand straight and that I would be lucky if she walked without braces and by the age of two.
Well, Marge, that little baby is now three years old. As she RAN into her classroom the first day of preschool, many things came to mind. Most were the normal things a mom of a “regular” kid would be thinking: I was so proud of her for being independent and brave. She looked so cute and happy. But then another thought ran across my mind, and it was, “Suck it, Marge!” I say suck it because here was this baby who you said wouldn’t walk until she was two and possibly with braces and she RAN into that room. And you know what? She RUNS everywhere, and she CLIMBES up the ladder to go down the slide. Oh, and she JUMPS, too! So, Marge, be careful what you say to new moms because it could wind up biting you in the ass. I understand you needed to be honest about Marie’s condition, but perhaps you could take some professional development classes on bedside manner because your ambivalence about her condition was heart wrenching to hear. And if I could, I would forward my therapy bill to you because you did a lot of damage with those comments and telling me to leave the room because my baby was crying because of me. She was crying because of you and your negative energy.
So, Marge, suck it! My baby girl is in preschool and doing great! No thanks to you, of course.
P.S. Tell Noelle her note about Marie’s “anti-social” behavior is coming soon!