We just had a trip to the doctor today as my youngest was having a hard time with runny nose, colds and cough. Even though we’ve bought over-the-counter medicines, I still feel uncomfortable giving medicines that’s not prescribed by her pediatrician. She’s the doctor of both my daughters and I call her Doc Sahlee.
Because I had to bring my youngest daughter to Doc Sahlee I had to inform school that my eldest can’t be anywhere but home. There was a disruption in the household as my husband’s grandmother was also in the hospital being looked after by the family members. We never had a nanny so when emergencies come up, we had to make do and make adjustments.
Normally, waiting for a doctor’s appointment can take hours and hours but today we were lucky that the list isn’t long. Our turn came 15 minutes after we arrived. While Doc Sahlee was doing her routine check up, listening to Gabe’s chest, hear her heartbeat, looked at both her ears and had her open her cute little mouth- we were also having small talks about life. We seldom see each other except when the kids get viruses and bacteria one after another which no mom would ever want. She asked me how things have been and I told her how recently I had a breakdown and that I got myself overwhelmed with everything that has been thrown at me. She listened like a good doctor would and told me, “Say no. Just say, no”. Told me that there would always be sacrifices built around wanting to achieve something in life. All these are not new to me but those words coming from a mother whose profession is far more important* than mine, and who took a backseat saying no to conferences abroad, to symposiums and all other activities to take care of her children and her husband- it was a breath of fresh air.
Many people I know in the corporate world has had issues with sacrifices, of what to sacrifice and trying to solve the work-life balance enigma. Always trying to console the self that the sacrifice of being away from family and children is worth it and that being at work for 15 hours in a day equates to love, as such is working hard. I am beginning to believe that those people who’ve already made choices of bringing children unto the world does not have that kind of luxury to even begin with. There aren’t easy choices but only sacrifices to be made. And we must be willing to accept that these sacrifices are necessary and that the children nor the partner shouldn’t be guilty of us taking a backseat for them nor us thinking that they owe us. And if we decide to do the other thing and sacrifice the kids or the partner or the friends and the family then we must be willing to accept the repercussions of not having the most memorable time with those we love and shouldn’t blame ambition and dream for it for we made the choice. After all, time will continue to pass us by and we have the control over how we use it.
After the prescription paper and saying the many thank yous, I kind of appreciated Doc Sahlee more. I just realized that she has become one of those people I truly believe, trust and appreciate.