Friday, August 18, 2006


On my way into the hospital from the parking lot this morning I passed a couple and their daughter who had paused outside the door for a cigarette (right next to the "no smoking" sign). They followed me through the doors and the daughter asked, "can we take the stairs?" The dad said, "No! Are you crazy?" and they waited for the elevator.

I chuckled a bit.

But then I went to this morning's Grand Rounds and learned about mental development in children. The speaker gave examples to support his view of relationships and the social environment in early brain development. He talked about tiny children throwing chairs at preschool teachers, depressed toddlers, and how 21% of small children met the criteria for a psychiatric disorder in one large study. It was amazing and heart-breaking.

This morning has reminded me of the importance of being a parent. I can work as an activist to support good child-friendly policy, and I can work as a doctor to heal wounds and help kids develop, but I can never do so much good as when I hold my son tight and let him know that I love him and always will. I'm his daddy. Nobody else can be, not the church, not the government, not the doctor, and not the school.


Shana said...

I totally agree and Sam is sure lucky to have a Daddy that realizes the importance of his roll in his children's lives.

Ree said...

"No success can compensate for failure in the home." The truth of the prophet's statement has never been more evident than it is today.

I'm thankful to have had such great parents. And it's also wonderful to have so many relatives who are great parents too. Keep up the good work, you guys--you lift me up and give me encouragement.

Tarimisu said...

I like this post a lot. I think about this kind of thing as I'm sending Eliza off to school in the morning. My attitude as she gets ready for school in the morning can totally make or break her day. Does she feel loved and accepted by me? Does she feel special, or does she feel like she is a failure? And then all day with the little ones - what am I teaching them throughout the day? Am I giving them plenty of those very important hugs? Is my correction, well, correct, or is it self-serving or out of frustration? I have to remember that I'm working to turn out confident people into th is great big world. I want them to feel loved and appreciated as they go through life, and like they can always turn to their Dad and me for anything. Like you said, no one else can be what Scott and I are to them. Thanks so much for this post.


Thank you for your post! As a teacher, it is very frustrating to see students struggle (and I'm not talking about just school work) because their parents aren't around to be parents, or they don't know (or even care about) how to be a parent.