After our long struggle with Arik’s health, it was tempting to just put it all behind us when we’d finally reached a resolution. A big part of me never wanted to think about it again. Ever. Instead, I blogged about it. My hope was that if Arik’s story could make a difference for even just one family – one other baby struggling needlessly with a tongue tie – it would all be worth it. So I slogged through my notes, journal entries, hospital letters and pictures. (And a whole lot of wine, particularly when I was going over the part about Arik’s MRI). Once it was ready, I published it on my blog, posted it on Facebook and shared it with a few people who are working hard here in Norway to change the lack of attention tongue ties get in this country. Several people encouraged me to deliver it to the various health institutions we’d been dealing with. In all honesty, I didn’t think much would come of it, but figured it couldn’t hurt and, since it was already written, it wouldn’t be more difficult than printing out a few copies and delivering them. Arne-Morten and I have also been contemplating filing a formal complaint. Our intention is not to get anyone in trouble (although, as those of you who read my original blog post might recall, there’s one doctor, at least, who was certainly deserving of a professional reprimand!) Rather, we wanted the doctors and other health professionals we dealt with to take tongue ties seriously. We don’t want others to go through what we did. And it’s mind-boggling to us that something so simple (and so easy to fix!) is wreaking so much havoc. We agreed that I would write out a formal complaint in English and Arne-Morten would translate it into Norwegian. I’ve been dragging my feet about it though; busy with other things and not particularly keen to relive the ordeal yet again. So I was pretty surprised when this letter came in the mail today (note: English version at the bottom)… Wow. Just… wow. They’re actually taking this further! I may have done a happy dance.
I’ve seen some posts floating around Facebook (like this one) about conversations to have with your kid every day. There are a few different versions, but they generally focus on the questions the authors have decided to ask their kid each night and how it helps the relationship and yada, yada, yada. I’m a sucker for those kinds of things and, admittedly, the concept seemed pretty decent. (It’s also a condensed version of the “30 questions you can ask your kid instead of ‘How was your day?’” articles. I can’t remember 30 questions; I’ll get overwhelmed and inevitably revert back to “How was your day?” I can remember four questions). I decided to start asking Linnea the four questions I liked the best from the various versions I’ve read:
- What was your favourite part of your day?
- How were you brave today?
- How were you kind today?
- What could you have done better today? (I liked this better than the “How did you fail today?” version in the post I linked to above).
I told her that I was brave by admitting my mistakes.It’s not easy to admit when you’re wrong (at least, I don’t find it easy) and, sadly, it’s often even harder to admit to our children when we mess up. They look up to us. They idolize us (at least at the age of three) and, well, we’re “the boss.” But if I want my kid to admit when she’s wrong – if I expect my daughter to say she’s sorry – I damn well better be able to do it myself. So I did.