The Waiting is the Hardest Part

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I am a certifiable expert in the way of pediatrician visits.  Little BooBoo has been seen a record number of 12 times so far this year alone for a variety of toddlery things.

Of the dozen visits this year, I come back to the same gripe which I like to call “the waiting room tease”.

Ah, the waiting room, a veritable cesspool of illness; all germy and perfectly ripe for spreading.  You probably hate the waiting room and anxiously await your child’s turn into the office.  I used to do the same dear Mommy Friend, that was until Dr. P became our pediatrician.  

In defense of the germy waiting room, there are books, a big child activity center and an amazing pharmacy LED display that somehow manages to capture BooBoo’s attention for 10 whole minutes which is an eternity in toddler time.  Little BooBoo is happy, entertained and most importantly, quiet in the waiting room.  Dr. P’s office has this adorable habit of allowing us to wait in the waiting area for an average of 45 seconds before calling us in, sound like a dream come true?  Think again.  

Our name is called and we are whisked away into an exam room but not to be seen, but rather to wait some more.

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I’m going to go out on a limb and call the exam room the worst place in the universe for a toddler to wait. 

The exam room is cold, small and full of expensive stuff.  As expected, my toddler instantly develops cabin fever in the exam room.  He wants to open every drawer and cabinet, press every button, turn every knob and flip every switch.  He wants to play with the ear checker thingy, squeeze the blood pressure bulb and jump on the faucet pedals (OK, even I’d like to do that).

Nothing in my bag of tricks stands a chance against the gravitational pull of expensive medical equipment.

I have waited in an exam room for as long as an hour before being seen and by the time Dr. P arrives I am exhausted and miraculously able to recite the immunization schedule by memory.

Why can’t we wait in the waiting room?  Isn’t that what a waiting room is for?

These are questions to which there are no answers, I know because I’ve asked and haven’t received answers.  If I wasn’t so in love with Dr. P I might make a move but his care is worth it, and then some.

Please tell me, how do you keep your child(ren) entertained in hands-off environments?


  1. I think that is far to long to wait in an exam room! And I also don’t know any failproof way to keep them entertained. I usually could read to mine. A book would keep them entralled forever. I was also never above a bribe of a sucker!

  2. I am fearful of all things doctor office, because if my kids weren’t sick, I feared they would be with all the hacking and snotting going on around there!

  3. Let’s see….I have four kids and they go to three different pediatricians (don’t ask)

    One of them has the best waiting room ever, it is like a playroom, so they keep us out there as long as possible and as soon as they call us back, the Dr is in the room waiting for us.

    The other kid, her DR is in a high-rise, so all I have to do is position her on the table and she is occupied by looking outside.

    Both my boys go to the same one, and that is so so. Usually I just throw in a new cheap toy that they have not yet seen.

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  5. Your Mommy Friend Lori says:

    My son has asthma and it was a very rough spring.  Next visit, I am going to demand the germy waiting room; it simply must be done.

  6. ummm my kid is 12.

    honestly I didn’t take her to see the doc unless she was really sick. So we didn’t have to deal with the waiting rooms as much. Even then I wanted to just put on a Hazmat suit. ugh

    In your case I would explain to the receptionist that you can not wait that long to be seen in the exam room. Please have the doc come to get you out of the waiting area unless he would like all the equipment trashed. 😉

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