I spent the day yesterday shadowing our fabulous pediatrician. Beforehand, I worried that it might be a little awkward, following someone around all day without contributing anything, but it turned out to be a really enjoyable experience! I'm looking forward to doing it again next month.
We saw a lot of kids, of course...kids who were there for well-checks, URIs, EIs, rechecks, and one patient who came in for a rule-out of a fairly rare condition...kids who loved the doctor, hated the doctor, and were ambivalent about the doctor...and they were all adorable. I got a lot of smiles from all of those cuties. It was a busy day, though not unpleasantly so. It was a nice pace. We spent roughly 10 minutes (my guesstimation, I didn't pay attention to the actual time) with each patient which seemed the perfect amount of time, and from 9:30am until about 1:30pm there were not any lulls. Then we went to lunch, visited a baby in the NICU at the hospital, and came back to clinic and saw a few more patients before I morphed back into a parent when BubTar arrived for his 3pm appointment.
Things I learned, in no particular order:
1. I am not used to wearing heels all day. Ha! Obviously, I was on my feet all day and we did a lot of walking and took the stairs quite a bit. It didn't bother me a bit until I was OFF of my feet for a while...then, OUCH. Gotta work on that. ;)
2. Primary-care pediatrics is a lot of repetition. We saw many kiddos that were there for the same well-check, and so you basically repeat the same thing over and over. It isn't a BAD thing, just something that hadn't really occurred to me previously.
3. 4 months old infants are particularly adorable patients.
4. I need to learn more Spanish and get brave enough to utilize what I already know.
5. I can see myself being happy with this sort of career.
6. (which is not specifically related to yesterday) I can survive a week with roughly 3 hours of frequently interrupted a sleep per night, two sick kids, feeling mildly under the weather myself, while keeping up with my coursework and responsibilities, and still manage to enjoy myself.
PS: The pediatrician did a mono spot, a re-swab for strep, and a CBC for BubTar yesterday and all signs pointed run of the mill virus. He has a pretty inflamed throat and very swollen lymph nodes...but his fever broke this morning! I don't know if it will stay down, but it is a start! Also, KayTar seems to have a plain old URI, so I expect her to recover pretty quickly, too.
Cross-posted at Mothers in Medicine