Let’s not call it an excuse for my child’s behavior or development concerns but rather alternative causes. From the support and words of encouragement from other parents, I am reminded that all children develop so differently. Take for example Humnoy again. He rolled over before he was four weeks old, took his first unassisted steps at seven- and a-half months, walking by eight months, and signed a few words and even understood a bit of Laotian by 12 months. All these amazing achievements were overlooked at this doctor’s visit and we have an evaluation appointment with a speech language pathologist Monday morning.
In addition to the referral for speech delay, there were many other concerns and just as many recommendations from Humnoy’s 2-year well checkup. I’ve had three weeks to analyze, implement, or re-evaluate these concerns in relation to Humnoy’s personal strengths and unique skills.
‘On small side of weight and height but proportionate’ We have a running joke that if Humnoy’s not sleeping or on the boob, he’s constantly on the go. Even while he’s eating, he’s moving his legs and actually now that I think about it, he even does that while breastfeeding. I know there are just people who just are built small, especially breastfed toddlers. I should’ve asked what growth chart the office uses because Humnoy has been and is breastfed. I don’t think it’s fair to pit him against all children. Dr. Sears wrote, “”Lean” means having the right percentage of body fat for your individual body type.” I don’t agree with measuring against an average when every child most certainly is not. The doctor recommends to add butter/olive oil to his meals and take a multivitamin. I’ve done that but I don’t think it matters for all this constant calorie-burning he does.
Photo credit: The Alpha Parent
‘Limit tv/screen time to 1-2 hours a day’ He’s a tv baby. That’s my least favorite parenting moment for me. I didn’t hesitate to turn on Blues Clues because I need to get lunch or dinner made. I hand him the Netflix app when I sense a tantrum coming from the boring grocery shopping cart. There were plenty of days where pregnancy took its grueling toll on me and Curious George let me rest from first trimester woozies. This was a welcome recommendation and I took it by the horns and followed through less than the allowed amount of TV time and it’s for the better.
‘Read frequently and sing/listen to music’ His new interest in books has surprised me the most. I shouldn’t hold the story time disaster against him, I suppose. We have encouraged reading and he loves reading with his dad, which I think is a great reward because he is so excited to spend time with him after being away from home for almost 12 hours. I turn on Pandora and we practice my swing moves. That’s a win-win because I estimate I won’t be back on the dance floor for a while or at least until Lanoy is not such a boob fiend.
‘Time outs – use consistently and for 2 minutes’ Ahh, the most controversial out of the whole bunch. Humnoy has had some issues with throwing, hitting, and kicking. He actually hit the doctor on her knee, which I believe prompted this last-minute recommendation on his chart. She asked how I handle it and I tell her I try to re-direct his behavior or remove his toys. She then brought up how I can’t really remove “when he hits somebody.” Okay, true that so she offers up time-outs as the answer. We’ve done time-outs and I personally feel they are innately damaging. My biggest realization was it is preventable and, here’s the excuse, Humnoy is cranky. One of his basic needs weren’t met and he’s lashing out in protest or a cry for help. In day care at the gym is the only other time he has had this behavior issue. I ran an experiment: instead of normally going to the YMCA at 11:00 am, which is lunch time and then nap, we are ready to leave right after breakfast, which is soon after waking up. He’s both full and well-rested. The first day I tried this, there were no issues. Coincidence? Maybe but it saved the embarrassment of my kid pushing another kid at day care for once.
What doctor’s orders have you welcomed or disregarded?
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