All the doctors ask me…

In the seven years I’ve been a mama, I have met a TON of doctors and specialists.


Pulmonologists, ophthalmologists, radiologists, neonatal audiologists, developmental pediatricians, neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons, infectious disease specialists, pediatric psychiatrists, nutritionists, retinal surgeons, and on and on… PLUS all the usual pediatricians and dentists!


There is one question that at least 80% of them ask me.


Any guesses?


I’m guessing some of my fellow NICU parents or parents of children with significant special needs might know.


The question… is this:


“Are you a nurse?”


It has to do with the terminology I use. The ease with which I handle the stethoscope when they want me to hear something. The way I can attach the leads without consulting the chart.


I don’t think about it. And I’m not trying to show off. This is just who I am now. I don’t think I could change it if I tried.


And, so, I tell them all the same thing. I shake my head and say, “Nope, but I had a 24-week micropreemie and spent three and a half months in the NICU.”


Every single one smiles and nods. That’s all they need to know. They get it.


Have you had reason to be atypically knowledgable about a subject? What subject and how did it happen?

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3 comments to All the doctors ask me…

  • Laraba

    There is a neat book called “Angel of Grace” written by parents whose daughter was born at about 24 weeks. The mom also knew so much medical terminology and it probably saved her daughter’s life because she was able to pass on info to doctors and other medical personnel who didn’t know her daughter well. Kudos to you for making the time and effort to learn what you needed to for your little one.

    To answer your question…no, I don’t think so. I know a lot of about a miscellany of things but none of it is that unusual or unexpected, I guess :-).

  • I do get that question alot. My girls were 24 and 25 weekers. The 25 weeker had an especially complicated journey, with chronic lung and airway issues even today (she is 9). I’ve heard so many stenosis and malacia words.

    I do think that parents of preemies should be given some kind of honorary medical degree, because life in the NICU is a crash course in medical school!

  • Michele

    Yep. Same for me. I get asked all the time what my medical background is. I had a 25 week preemie and we spent 13 weeks in the NICU. I found being able to speak their language made it much more efficient for us to speak to one another and I could read the charts too. In emergencies I am able to quickly tell medical personnel the important information that they need. Like you, it’s just who I am now. I’m not showing off, I’m just taking care of my babies.

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