Chicken Soup for the Soul

A little girl at the hospital, sitting on the patients bed, getting a routine checkup from the doctor.

An inspiring story for moms of pre-schoolers from Chicken Soup for the Soul.

“We were there for a simple wellness checkup, nothing more. And, as any forward-thinking mother would, I spent time prepping my preschooler. Reminding him that he’d been there before. Assuring him there would be no shots this time. Explaining that the doctor simply wanted to make certain he was healthy and getting bigger. I knew that my well-prepared child would sail through the exam.

But the pediatrician’s office was chock full of sick children. Hacking coughs, runny noses, flushed cheeks. Crying babies, rowdy siblings. Kids fighting over toys. Kids chewing on large Lego blocks and their fingers. The oppressive heat and noise in the stuffy waiting room unsettled me and I could see its effect on my quiet son, as well.

Almost-three-year-old Koy scooted nearer on the Crayola-red bench and tucked his legs up under him. “Wouldn’t you like to go over there and work a puzzle?” I riffled his mop of red hair. He shook his head and pressed close against me.

“There’s nothing to worry about,” I said. “This will be fun! Now, why don’t you pick out a book and bring it…”

“Koy,” called the nurse from the doorway. “Koy, you’re next.”

Gathering my purse and our jackets, I started towards her. Koy hung back.

“Come on,” I urged and took his hand. “She’s waiting.”

His uncertainty was obvious to the observant nurse. “There’s nothing to be scared of,” she reassured him as she led us into the small examination room. “The doctor just wants to look you over and see how big you’ve grown. Okay?”

His slight nod was jerky, nervous.

“Remember?” I murmured. “Mommy told you all this.”

He gave me a doubtful smile.

“Now, first,” the nurse carefully explained, “we’ll go down the hall where I’ll take some important things.”

“Important things?” His eyes widened.

“Yes,” she nodded. “I’ll take your height and your weight. Then, we’ll come back here to this room and I’ll take your temperature and your blood pressure.”

Chicken Soup for the Soul 20th Anniversary EditionStartling both the nurse and me, Koy locked his arms around my knees and buried his face against my thighs.

“Mommy,” he raised his voice in alarm, “she’s going to take my things. All my important things!”

“It’s okay, Sweetie.” I tried to pry him loose.

He clasped me closer and wailed even louder, “But what if she never gives them back?”


~Carol McAdoo Rehme, from Chicken Soup for the Soul: Parenthood