sticks and gowns

May 28, 2022

Starting around midday, my coworker and I began to feel ourselves flagging in endurance and, by the afternoon, I asked her, “Have we managed to breathe today?” Truthfully, though, it had kind of felt like that the whole week, never mind Friday—and for everyone, not just us . . .

The young father with an afternoon appointment was, judging by appearances, right with us. It was his first time solo with the two, one an infant and one a preschooler. The infant had spent most of the hour at the clinic crying, while the other child sprang about like Tigger, testing her dad’s patience—the level of which was unfortunately already being tested by the fact that we were overbooked and behind schedule. 

By the time we came in to administer vaccines to the youngest, the other child had apparently misjudged her bladder’s fill line. Her dad was pulling off the wet garments, and the girl was clearly embarrassed. In a quick troubleshooting response, my coworker offered to fill the role we normally assign to parents, with arms wrapped around the little one while the nurse tries to, as quickly as possible, give the injections. Jane gathered up the little one and began to sit in one of the chairs. She immediately leapt right back up, springing from the seat with a surprised gasp, “Oh!,” she blurted out, “I just sat in pee-pee, didn’t I?!?” A glance at the dad’s face confirmed that yes, indeed, this was the pee-pee chair. She glanced at the damage done to her bottom, shrugged, and sat back down in another chair.

Minutes later, vaccinations were done and the family was ready to leave. I’d put the wet clothing into a plastic bag, handed it to the father, and then glanced over to the little girl, now wearing one of our clinic’s spare diapers. While I was getting a bag, Jane had had pulled one of the paper exam gowns out of the drawer and was folding, wrapping, and tying it in order to fashion a small dress for the girl. 

“Oh, wow!” I commented, “that is such a nice dress. My sister and I used to make dresses like that too!”

The girl smiled.

Jane glanced up at me, winking slightly as she said, “You know, I might just need to make myself one of these before I leave today, as well!”

So much in this world is so, so very wrong. But there are, in the midst of all, moments of right-ness

*photo is of another part of my life that is, generally speaking, pretty solidly in the “right-ness” category ;-)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: