A few weeks ago I took the kids to the dentist for their checkups. Living overseas and finding dentists isn’t always easy, but we’ve gone to this dentist for the past few years. I feel like she knows my kids and understands our circumstances with Jie Jie.
I was wrong.
Let me back up a bit. In the past I’ve let the kids know and I even “practiced” with them when they were younger. I still get out the plastic toy dentist set beforehand and play dentist with Jie Jie, but this time I didn’t get that done. Bad, bad, bad.
She was fine watching the other two get their teeth checked, but when it was her turn that content child left the building. I don’t mean she got up and left, I mean she was no longer content and did NOT like anything or anyone.
I was okay. The dentist is great with her and quick.
She understood. I thought.
“Your daughter has a mouth sore and she will need to see a doctor.” (What I thought she said)
We go to the lobby and wait to pay. Jie Jie calms down and plays with the train set. The nurse comes out with a prescription and tells me about a doctor I need to see. Now I’m confused as to what kind of doctor, especially since she gave me a prescription for the mouth sore. I had not understood the conversation with the dentist.
I phoned my husband and gave the nurse the phone.
They talked. I listened. She gave the phone back.
“I’m not sure what she was saying, but I’m almost there. Just wait,” said my husband.
He arrived and talked with the nurse some more. After about five minutes, it was clear that the nurse was telling us that we needed to have Jie Jie tested. She was a little slow for her age.
We kindly let her know that she is a special needs child and that it should be on her medical record from the first visit. It was awkward.
We left giggling because anyone that has ever met Jie Jie knows immediately that she has special needs. We couldn’t be angry, because for one they were so sweet in how they were trying to tell us. I really felt bad for them.
Lesson Learned:Even though you are the only foreign family that visits a dentist and you have been their for years, take your medical information to give to the dentist to look at. It’s better than having awkward conversations like the one we went through.
What dentist/doctor stories do you have with your children? Any communication stories? Please share in the comments below.