December 30, 2014 § 1 Comment

This morning I took Arianna into the city for her quarterly shot.

She has been doing this for a couple years at this point. This was not a new experience. In fact when we walk into the office it’s like walking into “cheers” and all the receptionists, nurses and lab techs say “Ari!”

Today was different. Ari was extremely anxious which she hasn’t been since the beginning. She gave me a really hard time about going and was a bit cranky even once we got there. She just wasn’t in the mood – just so sick of it. I truly don’t blame her.

I thought about everything on the way home about how she had no choice in this appointment. It made me think about how little she really gets to choose. This stands out mostly from a medical perspective. The sheer number of appointments can be overwhelming and she is poked and prodded, examined, x-rayed and discussed a lot.

As I drove home my heart broke for her knowing these types of things would last her lifetime. I thought as well about how strong she has become, how she has learned to self-advocate within the confines of these “have to” experiences. I am amazed how she makes the appointments the best she can for herself by really making sure the staff falls in love with her by turning on the charm real thick, assuring that they will remember her in the future and yes, it does always get her a little extra TLC. She has become an uber shmoozer!

I worry as we move closer to what will be her first major surgery. She will be challenged and have to surrender on so many levels. As we move forward I try to honor any requests she has. We are even trying to track down her favorite anesthesiologist to help with the surgery. I will continue to help her find ways to have some control in situations where it feels like she has none.

In the mean time I will remind myself as an educator to provide more choices to kids who often are not afforded the opportunity to chose for themselves.

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