Saturday, June 15, 2024

Did You Ask Questions?

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( We all know that children grow at different paces. While some start off small and get big, others can start out big and grow more slowly. Then there are children that start out big and only get bigger. There are quite a few different factors that go into how fast or slow your child grows such as genetics, environmental or developmental differences, and diet. With black children, this is especially the case because our children, at times, tend to outpace others and grow rapidly. With my youngest son, it has been a completely different story as far as growth than with my first. My little Snapping Turtle weighed in at 7 pounds and 5 ounces which was two pounds heavier than his older brother. Once he came home, Turtle exploded and started growing by leaps and bounds. It wasn’t until I was having a conversation with another Mama Bear that I started to question how fast he was growing.

When Christmas rolled around, and she asked his sizes and was alarmed when I told her Turtle was five months old. She immediately started asking about what I was feeding him, how often, and where he was on the growth curve. I have to admit that I looked super confused while holding the phone because I never thought anything was wrong with Turtle. He was just my jolly chubby baby that liked his food. I had to really stop and think about the health of my newbie baby in a way that I hadn’t before. I began to google what was normal size for a baby his age and was surprised to find out that at five to six months old, Turtle was only supposed to weigh between 16.8 – 17.6 pounds. I admit that before his six-month appointment that I was more than a little worried. What if we got there and she told me that there an underlying problem that I had missed? What if it was causing him pain in some other way that I had ignored?



When the time came for his appointment, I had a list of questions for his pediatrician as well as all the answer to questions that I knew she would ask. Of course, the nurses took his vitals and I anxiously waited for them to put him on the scale. Turtle put up a fight as usual before they got him on the cold scale, but I was genuinely surprised when the scale stopped on his weight. Even though it felt like my son weight over 30 pounds, he only came in at 25 pounds. When she came in, she examined him from the top of his head to the bottom of his feet and said he was fine. She said that he was as healthy as healthy could be.

As soon as she said that I began asking my barrage of questions about if he was overweight or not, if there was anything that needed to be done about it, and could she show me what growth percentile was. Her face went from being surprised to one of being appreciative. She quickly agreed to plot his growth curve for me and answer every question I asked. After having the curve explained to me, she simply stated that he was fine and there was no need to worry since he was about to be more active. She also added that if knew when to stop eating when he was full then there wasn’t too much of a problem. Long story, short, my Turtle was just hefty.

Needless to say, I sat up scouring Google and working myself into a frenzy for no reason. It did feel nice to be prepared when I went to the doctor’s appointment because I knew that my concern about my child’s health is not something taken lightly. One thing that I failed to mention was that his pediatrician is an older black woman. This obviously makes a huge difference in the treatment that is suggested for my Turtle. There was one thing that his pediatrician said to me that caught my attention that she was so glad to see another black mother asking the right questions about their child. She stated that there are times when mothers just let certain health problems ride because another family member had it or it is not causing an issue. Don’t be afraid to ask questions at the doctor’s appointments, Mama Bear. You’re doing exactly what you need to for your little cub to be big and strong.

Staff Writer; Jessieca Carr

One may connect with this sister online over at Instagramsusiecarmichael1920 and Twitternoladarling1920.

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