I have my highs, and I have my lows. This week I have been exceptionally lonely and prone to cry. My friend and co-worker Mike is in a training class, so I was volunteered to take one of his children for a psychiatric evaluation and psychotropic medication consult. Jenny (not her real name) is almost 4 years old, a chunky little nugget with pigtails and that raspy voice that some little kids have. When I pick her up at the daycare at the crack of dawn I am informed she hasn’t had breakfast, but we are running late so there is no time to stop. We get to the doctor’s office and wait, and wait, and wait. Jenny never gets cross, or pouts, or whines. I get in the floor and we play house, then she cooks me some food in the kitchen, then we color, then we are farmers with all of her animals, then she plays games on my phone until it dies. She knows we are going to McDonald’s and asks when we can leave every 5 minutes. At 11:45 I finally complain, and then I’m asked to bring Jenny back “around 1:30” because the doctor has a mandatory staffing and she can’t be seen until then.
We go to McDonald’s, where Jenny gets a Happy Meal, quickly making her cheeseburger, fries, apples and Sprite disappear. My little nugget has a few of my chicken nuggets as well. Not-her-case-manager buys us ice cream cones AND chocolate chip cookies, with me praising her for being such a good girl. When we return to the doctor’s office Jenny draws a picture of us, and then I show her a picture of my dogs and she draws them as well. She is still happy, laughing, playing…such a good girl! The doctor finally sees us at 3 p.m., and Jenny has her meltdown shortly after. She yells and cries and runs in and out of people’s offices. I explain to the doctor that she hadn’t had her nap and that she was tired and cranky. I have a bag of toys in my trunk and am forced to promise to give her three of them if she will stop running away from me, stop yelling and get in the car. Once she is seat-belted in and digging through the toys (choosing Stitch, the Cookie Monster and a meerkat) she is fine and happy again. As we near her foster home, she asks me if I am staying for dinner. I say No, I have to go home to my puppies. She asks if I will come in and play with her for “just a few minutes” because now we are best friends. My heart, which she already had, melts. Of course I do go inside and play Barbies with her for about 15 minutes, garnering a quizzical look from the 60-year old foster mother. I don’t care, I just smile and play with her dolls, because she has made me happy today, with her continued good mood and positive energy. I might be crying a little as I write this, but they are happy tears, given to me by a precious little one, a chunky little angel 🙂
“Such a perfect day, you made me forget myself…I thought I was someone else, someone good”