Welcome to my blog. I write about fitting in, sticking out, and missing the motherland as a serial foreigner.

Welcome back to Tucson! Can you hold for an hour and a half?

Delving back into the medical care system here in Arizona has been a slap in the face. Vermont is a dream land of fairies, butterflies, and rainbows in comparison. I spent an hour and a half on the phone just trying to change Miriam's pediatrician - and that was the successful attempt. A few unsuccessful attempts had already been made and abandoned previously because of crying babies (well, just one), phones running out of batteries because of being in use for so long, etc.

Miriam and Magdalena had their first visit with the new pediatrician yesterday. The thing is, even after all the time and effort I invested in making the change, I'm thinking of changing doctors again. Or even wishing I hadn't changed doctors in the first place. This is already the third doctor Miriam has had since she was born.

The first pediatrician got dumped when Miriam was just a week old for two reasons. First, we waited 90 minutes in a nasty, crowded waiting room for our first (and only) appointment and when we finally did see her, she didn't seem to care about us. But what really made me decide to switch pediatricians was when she told me to stop breastfeeding barely-born Miriam because she had jaundice. Yeah. Bye-bye.

We kept the next doctor for almost the next three years. He was awesome. Many of his former patients who now have kids were bringing their children in to see him, he's that good. The problem is, his office is way over by where we used to live when we first moved here (i.e., the ghetto). It takes forever to get there because Tucson refuses to have a functional freeway. I put up with the long travel time for almost three years, but it finally was just too much.

So I changed the girls' doctor to one based out of a nearby hospital. Here's what I found out yesterday, though: it takes almost as long to get there as it did to our previous, awesome pediatrician. That's because the office itself is inside the hospital, which means I have to park in a huge parking garage and then trek for 15 minutes just to get to the waiting room. Also, it's a teaching hospital, so we are seen by the resident and then the attending physician. I don't have anything against teaching situations like this, because really, they have to learn somehow. However, the visit ended up taking quite a long time as a result. Sigh.

Besides that, it was kind of a mediocre visit anyway. I was already wary because Miriam had a big bruise and a scrape on her back from where she hit it on the bed frame while jumping off the bed. Why do kids get their worst, ugliest, most visible injuries right before professional pictures and doctor appointments? It automatically puts me on the defensive, like I have to prove to the doctor that I am not, in fact, a child abuser.

Then there was the fact that the nurse who measured Magdalena told me she was 25 inches long. I told her that I was pretty sure that was wrong, considering she was only 19 inches long at birth a short six weeks ago. She re-measured and sure enough: 21.75 inches. Whoops. I'm glad I didn't let my daughter get put on the charts as some kind of freak baby.

I'm considering changing pediatricians yet again, in search of that perfect combination of convenient proximity and personable care. Have any of you found that perfect balance? Or am I the only one having negative pediatrician experiences?

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