Tuesday, July 11

Motardmageddon II: Idiot Parent Pre-eclampsia

I guess there is something about being pregnant (or trying to get pregnant) that heightens your awareness of bad parenting going on around you. (Note Ian's frustration in Motardmaggedon 1.) That said, it's time for a rant. I was in the Dr's office today for my check up, and, lucky me, I got to sit there for almost an hour because the receptionist forgot to pull my file when I checked in and so the nurse didn't know I was there. Now, I could go on about the ineptitude of my Dr's office and the foolishness of making a 7-month pregnant woman wait for an hour and so forth, but actually, I understand that mistakes do happen, and that my Dr was not purposefully trying to torture me. Plus, when my nurse finally saw me sitting there, she 1) recognized me, which, as many of you may know, is a big deal in a busy OB practice and 2) she immediately made a big apologetic fuss and brought me in right away, cutting into both her and the Dr's lunch time. So, all is forgiven and I am not angry with them. What I am angry about are the motards I had to suffer in the waiting room.

Let me set the stage: This is a big practice with 6 different Drs with lots of patients, obviously necessitating a large waiting room. The room is lovely and spacious and typically a comfortable place to wait. Comfortable, that is, until two running, screaming, 2-ish-year-old boys are using it as their own personal play yard. Now, I know what some may say...they are two-year-old boys and genetically predisposed to run wild. These kids, though, were racing around the waiting room, screaming loudly, throwing a small plastic ball and then crawling underneath people's chairs to retrieve it, and generally behaving in a manner barely acceptable outdoors, let alone in an area where pregnant women (already not the most graceful creatures on the planet) should be allowed to walk unimpeded by little screaming obstacles. More than once I saw one of these boys slam into a pregnant woman trying to make her way across the room. Thoughts of the litigation that could accompany a horrible accident kept running through my head, and I seriously began to wish that Supernanny had some sort of hotline to call to report obscenely bad parenting.

And what of the parents? you may ask. They (The mom and dad of one boy and the solo mom of the other) were sitting in the corner of the waiting room chatting away as if nothing was amiss, blithely ignoring the glares of the other patients. Every once in a while they would call out a token "Tyler, come back here" or "Damien, settle down" (I actually forget the name of the second boy, so I made up my own), which the boys would completely ignore and which the parents never followed through on. This went on for quite a while until an older nurse popped her head out and chided the young boys for their behavior, telling them that somebody was going to get hurt. After this, the parents, apparently humbled by the reprimand of an authority figure, made a genuine effort to control their children for all of five minutes. They got up out of their seats (shocking!) and carried the now screaming boys back to the corner of the waiting room where they tried to calm them down and amuse them with some sort of game. Once the threat of the nurse had dissipated, though, the kids went right back to running around. At one point the dad, who seemed to have a slightly deeper sense of discipline than the moms, put on his best "firm voice" and told his son to "Come sit down RIGHT NOW." The little boy turned around and replied, I kid you not, "NO!" I was stunned. Surely, I thought, this kid has finally brought the smack down on himself. I was actually afraid for the little monster, possibly because the thought of what one of my parents would have done if I had told them "NO" was still deeply enough ingrained in my psyche as to cause me actual terror. Holding my breath, I waited for the response. Waited...waited...waited...THE FATHER DID NOTHING!!!!! He ignored the boy, who went on with his running and screaming, while I sat there fighting back the onset of an apopletic fit.

When did it become OK for kids to behave like this? When did it become OK for little kids to tell their parents "No"? How stupid do you have to be to not realize that you are failing as a parent when your children behave in such a way and blatantly flout your authority? And, most importantly, why in God's name are you sitting in an OB office pregnant with your next kid when you already can't control the ones you have?!

It was at this moment that I looked down at my giant belly and promised Twitch that her and I would never have this problem. The day she decides to look at me and say "NO!"...the one time this happens...will be a day carved forever in her memory, even if buried deep in her subconscious. If this makes me un-PC, so be it. I would rather be seen as an overly strict authoritarian than as an irresponsible motard who put an entire room full of pregnant women in danger. I would rather my child fear me then feel good about herself while ruining everybody else's morning. I tell you this now, Twitch--you can scream all you want, but I am bigger, stronger, and smarter than you. I am the parent, and I have the power to make you behave. It is just that simple.

It was at this point that I finally got to go in to see the Dr, and when the nurse took my blood pressure, it was (surprise!) high, causing her and the Dr to get worried looks on their faces and start talking about the danger of pre-eclampsia. The Dr started to tell me about the symptoms of pre-eclampsia and what to look out for, until I pointed out that possibly my blood pressure was high because I sat forgotten in the waiting room being accosted by ill-behaved two-year-olds for an hour. The nurse kind of chuckled and agreed with my self-diagnosis. "Maybe we should wait and see how her levels look next visit, Dr."

Let this be a warning to all you motard parents out there...the inability to control your children can lead to pre-eclampsia in innocent pregnant women; so USE SOME SENSE!

Oh, and in case you're keeping up with such things, here is my belly update for this visit:

Total weight gain since conception: 13 pounds
Approximate baby weight: 3.5-4 pounds
Fundal height: 32 cm
Belly circumference: 47 inches


Tammy & Darren said...

I can't wait for the day that Twitch tells you NO. Hell, I'll even be the first person to teach her the word! HA HA HA HA HA!!
And when she comes to visit Auntie Tammy we'll play Barbies, go shopping for shoes, have manicures and pedicures, talk about boys and buys lots of make-up and play "Pretty Pretty Princess."

Brian said...

I was at the golf driving range today, hitting balls next to a man and his 10 year old son - let's call them Augustus Gloop Jr. and Sr. - who were obviously amateur golfers, but had some really nice, new sets of golf clubs, and were out for a fun afternoon of bonding and golf. Occasionally, the kid would yell "S*%t!" or "Damn, these clubs suck!" or "Give me some money for some water!" The father just continued his own awful shots, all the while enduring the abuse of this little monster. As I was leaving the range (I was actually to distracted to go on), I heard the son say "I thought we were going bowling tonight! This sucks!"

A brat? Yes. A new phenomenon? No. The "spoiled" child is nothing but a cliché. A cultural tradition, spanning all creeds and classes, that needs to be upheld. Certainly, one of these kids will grow up to be a world leader - look at our current President.

(Too political?)

Himself said...

The fisrt day that TWITCH tells Me no will be grim...the second fatal. ANy makeup than visits My house will find a new home in my spacious trash cans. If the father had taken the time to beat his son with the clubs, the boy would quickly have realized that the clubs were, in fact, perfectly adequate to the task of straightening his ass out. And while there is a long tradition in this country of raising spoiled brats, I am not a traditionalist, and woe betide any child who orders Me to give them money.

Brian said...

I know I misspelled the word "too" in my previous comment. It has bothered me for quite some time, but I don't know how to go back and edit once a comment is posted.

Also, I hope I am not misusing quotation marks. I believe that quotes CAN be used when defining terms(?), but they are also much easier to use than italic tags when you want EMPHASIS in HTML--however incorrect this may be.

I can't sleep at night knowing grammar snobs might read this.