Following hot on the heels of birthday season for us (October-January) is my annual hair-shirt penitent moment. It is the same thing year after year and you would think I'd learn my lesson. Every single year, I schedule all the kids' appointments to happen at the same time in the name of multitasking. I tell myself that it's a good use of time and energy to get them all out of the way at once. I pat myself on the back for using less gas by only making the 1&1/2-hour round trip trek once.
And every single year, I regret my decision moments after hauling into the pediatrician's office and trying to keep the baby from licking the door handle in what is always the middle of flu season. I bemoan my stubborn optimism while explaining to Ty that the lobby is not the appropriate place to sumo wrestle an unwilling brother. I kick myself while helping Leif redress himself for the fourth time as we're waiting to be called back into an exam room and telling him, "Honey. When they said 'get comfortable' they didn't mean you needed to be naked out here." I ask Liam and Aidan, through my firmly clenched teeth, to "please save their discussions about whether intestinal gas or our dog smells worse for home. Where no one can hear them." I remember the year that I ended up on my knees in the doctor's public restroom trying to mop up a puddle around a cup on the floor. And I invariably make a mental note to spread the appointments out over a couple days next year. Then I promptly forget my resolution in the chaos that follows.
Up first this year was Ty. You may recall Ty's last go-round when he tried to "give a sample" by aiming for a cup set on the floor in the general vicinity of the toilet. Ty, having turned 7, got to do his first ever old-fashioned eye exam. He stood at the end of a hall covering his eye with a large, black spoon-type paddle. The nurse pointed to the second row from the bottom on the eye chart.